Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Advice from a mother-in-law

OK, many of you are squirming at the title of this tip. I love my mother-in-law dearly but in my early years of marriage found she often was a little too “helpful” with her advice (do you know what I'm saying?). However, one piece of advice she gave me has been SO helpful over the years and comes back to haunt me when I don't heed it.

Years ago, she and I were running errands together. I was a typical young mom, 2 kids in car seats, frazzled and in a hurry making a quick stop at the local ATM. I flew back into the car, tossed the cash and my card into the console area between front seats and started to throw the car into reverse. My mother-in-law stopped me and said… “Wait, just stop for 30 seconds and put your card and your cash away, it's a good habit and 30 seconds now will save you lots of time later looking for a misplaced ATM card or lost cash.” Her voice rings in my head every time I am frantically looking for keys or a purse that didn't get returned to their proper place and I am running late. Her words came back to me yesterday as I was running my business profit and loss statement in order to fill out college financial aid forms. I'd gotten sloppy with some of my transactions in November and December and was wracking my BRAIN to try to remember what it was I'd done.

What should have been a 15-minute process took the better part of the day. WHAT a waste of time. All it would have taken was an extra 30 seconds with each “mystery” transaction and so much time would have been saved in the long run.

Needless to say - “take 30 extra seconds” is one of my New Years resolutions. How about you? What is taking extra time in your business or personal life because you rushed through it and didn't do it right to begin with? Think about it…

“If you lose your money, you can always make more, if you lose time, you can never get it back…” - Jim Rohn

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