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The Secret to Doing it All

Group of People Connection Digital Device Concept

Just yesterday I received this question from a reader:


I have been benefiting from your insight (very appreciative I found your information!) and I am seeking to implement the principles you share. I am amazed. I was thinking: you run Southwestern Consulting, you generate enormous amounts of actionable content, you have speaking engagements… all the while having a family and the responsibilities that go with it. What a juggling act it must be!

How do you stay ahead of the wave of time?

I’m starting out on building a platform and I wonder, will I have time to respond to comments like you do? Create quality content? And not sacrifice family relationships or my own health?”

– Pat

Thank you so much Pat!

Your comments are truly inspiring and uplifting to me. We do have a lot going on and I promise you there are many times where it is probably appearing like we have our act together far more than we actually do!

Needless to say, your note made me feel good to have someone take notice of how hard we really do work. Especially when the people we are working so hard for are people just like you!

My personal philosophies about productivity are clearly outlined in Chapter 5 of Take the Stairs (The Harvest Principle), in my Tedx talk, and of course in detail in Procrastinate on Purpose.

But I want to highlight the question “How do you manage to keep up with it all?”

Because there is a simple answer to it.

While it isn’t necessarily a secret, the answer is still dramatically under-realized by most people.

The answer to “how do I manage to keep up with it all?” is…

I don’t.

We do.

Me and my Wifey (AJ) do. Me and my Partners at SWC do. Me and our extraordinary “Special Ops” (Operations) team at SWC do. Me and our now private team of Vaden family assistants do.

We are a team.

We, as a team…do.

People often feel like it’s impossible for themselves to keep up with it all – and they’re right!

That’s exactly the problem. Most of us are trying to keep up with it all.

You can’t.

Only, you + a team can.

You have to have a team.

You must have a team.

It is our team that deserves the credit.

And I don’t mean that in a trite, cliché, politically correct, it’s the nice thing to say, kind of way – although I do love our team, appreciate them dearly, and believe in them.

I mean that you literally have to lead people. You have to inspire people to join a mission.

You have to create an outlet for them to pursue a cause.

You have to create jobs for people.

How do you do that?


You reinvest.

The way to building a team is you have to learn to reinvest.

And here is the key…

When you’re first starting out, you have to always reinvest more than you feel comfortable reinvesting.

There has never been a single time in the growth of our business so far (which is now an 8-figure business) where I felt like I had enough money to reinvest.

You always feel short of what you need.

But you have to do it anyway.

You can get Virtual Assistants at $2-4 per hour to start with simple tasks. And then you work your way up from there. Not to mention that you can get family, friends, neighbor kids, and interns to often help you out too.

If you’ll do your best to invest into them, they will do their best to invest into you.

My goal (and AJ’s) is to always keep reinvesting in other people. And one of my personal goals in the next 5 years is to have all of our top performing team members making more than any other person in the world who does a similar job function to what they do.

We want them to win. We want to create for them. We want to provide unparalleled opportunity for them.

When you reinvest in other people, you’re betting on them but you are also betting on yourself.

You’re betting that with the extra capacity they can give you, you can use that time to create more revenue, more opportunity, and more value.

And then once you do that, you reinvest again.

And again.

And again.

You build a team.

Slowly if you have to, but you must build a team.

Because you can’t do it all.

You need help.

You need other people.

And they need you.

And if you’ll create for them…

If you’ll work for them…

If you’ll risk for them…

Then you will provide rewards for them that they can’t get anywhere else.

And in turn, they will pick you up, support you, and carry you on their shoulders all the way until other people look at you one day and say…

“How in the world do you possibly keep up with it all?”

Life Story with Amanda Johns Vaden and Jim Cavale: Highest Use Of Time – Episode 147 of The Action Catalyst Podcast


As Iron Tribe’s President, Jim Cavale’s focus is scaling the Iron Tribe Fitness athlete experience throughout all of its gym markets, leading each of his departments to innovate new growth strategies and engage their respective teams to achieve the brand’s purpose of creating fitness communities that change lives. He is passionate about impacting lives in a positive way in every aspect of his life.

Amanda Johns Vaden is a Senior Partner, Million Dollar Producer, Business Consultant, Executive Coach, and Keynote Speaker at Southwestern Consulting™Her involvement in Southwestern Consulting™ started in 2006 where she traveled the country working with over one thousand U.S. based sales offices training them on best practices in sales and business.

Show Highlights:

  • As you grow you realize it’s tough to scale anything, especially culture. @JimCavale
  • When people are all about purpose and passion, sales sometimes becomes a dirty word. @JimCavale
  • At some point you have to say no and let go of controlling every aspect of your life. @JimCavale
  • Time management is a system that you use to manage your time, not a tool of productivity. @JimCavale
  • Are the items on your to-do list the most important use of your time? @JimCavale
  • Create more whitespace on your calendar to free up your mental and creative capacity. @AmandaJohnsSWC
  • When you go from one meeting, phone call, and project to the next, you don’t give yourself time to get real tasks done. @AmandaJohnsSWC
  • What do you do better than any one else in the world? Don’t get distracted by everything else and do that one thing really well. @JimCavale
  • What is your time worth today? @JimCavale
  • Put those goals into motion and figure it out along the way. You will never have everything figured out before you start. @AmandaJohnsSWC
  • I never want to look back and say, “I didn’t get the most out of myself.” @JimCavale
  • The more you help yourself and make yourself better, the more you can help others be better. @JimCavale

To learn more about Jim and Iron Tribe Fitness follow the journey and get involved at irontribefitness.comTwitter, Instagram, or Facebook.

If you are interested in partnering with Iron Tribe and opening up a franchise in your area, click here!

The Action Catalyst show is a weekly podcast that Rory Vaden of Southwestern Consulting™ hosts every Wednesday, which is regularly in the Top 25 of Business News Podcasts and has listeners from all around the world. The show shares “insights and inspiration to help you take action”. Each week Rory shares ideas on how to increase your self-discipline and make better use of your time to help you achieve your goals in life. He also interviews one very special expert guest and thought leader every week. Subscribe on iTunes and please leave a rating and review!

What You Need to Know About Prioritizing

Prioritizing is a valuable skill.

But prioritizing has a limitation that no one ever talks about.

There is nothing about prioritizing that creates more time.

Prioritizing is more like borrowing time from one activity to spend on another.

It is just bumping an item up on your to-do list – which is valuable – but it does nothing inherently to create more time.

And it doesn’t necessarily help you accomplish the other remaining items.

Instead, You multiply time by giving yourself the emotional permission to spend time on things today that give you more time tomorrow.

That is called the significance calculation. It is a measure of how much something is going to matter in the future and not just right now.

Don’t prioritize only the urgent.

Instead give yourself the permission to eliminate, automate, delegate, and procrastinate on purpose on the trivial, urgent, or insignificant things.

And then give yourself the permission to protect the significant things – the things that you can spend time on today that create more time tomorrow.

Don’t just manage time.

Don’t just prioritize time.

Multiply time.

The Delegation Limitation and The Permission of Imperfect


The thought that “someone else won’t be able to do it as well as I can” is the ultimate limiter of scalability in an entrepreneurial organization.

Until you defeat that thought as an entrepreneur, you will be the bottleneck, the constraint, and the throttle to your own growth.

That thought must die in order for you to get to the next level.

It’s a fascinating case study too because it’s a matter of “what got you here won’t get you there.”

You have become successful by doing it yourself, making sure it’s perfect, and doing it right 100% of the time.

Yet as church leader Andy Stanley says, “Leadership is not about getting things done right. Leadership is about getting things done through other people.”

What you are missing then, is the permission of imperfect.

You need to allow yourself and your organization the permission to make mistakes. To not have every single “I” dotted or “T” crossed.

Not because you’re embracing a lower standard, but because you know that your ability to empower others will ultimately only enhance your organization’s ability to serve more people a more quality customer experience.

As an Owner, Leader, or Multiplier your job is not only to do, but to create other leaders around you who do.

Your role isn’t to just make money, but to help other people around you make money.

Your role isn’t only to create the ultimate customer experience, but to create leaders who create amazing experiences.

Your role is to Multiply.

And they key permission you need in order to be able to do that is the short term permission of imperfect.

You need to allow yourself the potential grace of realizing that “sure, they may not be able to do it as well as I can once, or twice, or even fifty times” but when you make the significance calculation, you realize that eventfully they’ll be able to figure it out just like you were.

So it is the permission of imperfect that you are missing. And as soon as you give yourself that permission, the sooner you will delegate and the sooner you will Multiply.

Ps if you like this article you need to watch this webinar and buy our new book.

10 Lessons from Building a $10 million Company in 10 years

Southwestern Consulting Silly Photo

This past week we celebrated 2 major and emotional milestones for Southwestern Consulting:

  1. This year marks our 10th anniversary since we founded the U.S. operations of our company in May 2006.
  1. As a company, we sailed past $10 million in annual revenue in 2015 for the first time ever.

It feels like an abundant blessing since both mark significant checkpoints that sadly the vast majority of businesses that start from scratch will never get to experience.

In reflecting back on the amazing achievements of our team, here are 10 lessons I’ve learned:

  1. The Power of Who– While I am a huge Simon Sinek fan and Start With Why is one of the most impactful books I’ve ever read, we’ve actually learned that “who” is even more important than “why”. The purpose of our company has changed and evolved over the years, but the reason that we have survived is because of the rock-solid foundation of amazing people who have stayed through it all. If you lost your focus on your mission you can get it back, but you have to fight like hell to get and keep amazing people no matter what.
  2. The Power of Why – A very close second however is developing true clarity about why we are in business. Influenced heavily by Sinek’s book, we made a very pointed shift to clarify the internal purpose of our company and why we exist in 2013 with “We exist to help people achieve their goals in life.” Defining that internal mission of service to  our clients has become a rallying mantra that has helped us to attract team members and deliver better offerings for our clients in the last few years. You can read about where we almost failed at this here.
  3. The Power of Team – As the African proverb says, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go with a team.” How do you build a $10 million business? You don’t. You build an amazing team of people and the team builds the business. If it all works out, you’ll just be lucky enough to go along for the ride, but it’s not one that any one person can take credit for. One thing I love about our culture is we are a team of partners who all could build businesses on our own, but we instead choose to do it together.
  4. The Power of Technology – “Automation is to your time what compounding interest is to your money,” has become one of the signature quotes from our most recent book Procrastinate On Purpose. It’s no coincidence that since our implementation of Infusionsoft in 2012, our company has quadrupled in size in the last 3 years.
  5. The Power of Perception – Perception is reality. Which is why branding, thought leadership, social media, and marketing is a bedrock in today’s business environment. It doesn’t matter what you say about you, all that matters is what Google says that other people say about you. You have to be serious about putting valuable information out into the world to build your reputation and more importantly to build trust with people. These areas of content marketing and branding are areas that you are going to see even more rapid investment and improvement from our team in the next few years.
  6. The Power of Commitment – Last night, Amanda and I watched the movie The Big Short about the economic depression in 2008 spurred by the collapse of the US housing market. The year 2008 was our second year in business and we remember booking workshops with mortgage offices one week and by the next week when we showed up they were boarded up! We built our company in the middle of a down economy and several of our clients built their businesses during the same time frame – we never knew anything different. It shows that if you are willing to be committed you will find a way to be successful regardless of circumstances.
  7. The Power of Scrutiny – This is one we owe to much of our mentorship at The Southwestern Family of Companies to continually challenge the need for every single expense. It’s like Dave Ramsey says in Entreleadership“You have to constantly be beating down your overhead expenses with a bat.” We’ve found that you create drastic turn-arounds in profits and healthy margins in cash flow by making hundreds of cuts and managing even the smallest expenses. Undisciplined finances will eat away bit by bit and kill even the best company one cut at a time.
  8. The Power of Culture – You know you have a great culture when it “ejects” or weeds out the people who don’t belong or who we’re not a good fit for. At first, we were shy and timid about the things we believed because we didn’t want to offend anyone. As it turns out, that caused way more problems than it solved. Now our job descriptions openly advertise things like the fact that we pray in company meetings. It helps people know right away whether or not they will fit in with us and like being on our team. We’re not looking for the perfect set of skills as much as we are now looking for the perfect fit for our culture. And we don’t hire people who want to do what we do as much we hire people who believe what we believe.
  9. The Power of Vision – This last year, the CEO of the parent family of companies challenged us to model out a detailed month by month 10-year vision forecast for the company. It was painstaking, but what ended up happening was we took it out 34 years and it is so inspiring! We now know exactly what we have to plan for, and it provides clarity to everyone about where we’re going and what it will take to get there.
  10. The Power of Faith – One of the silliest mistakes I personally made was that I never actually prayed the prayer to give our company over to God until 2014. Since that time it has been a very wild ride of unexpected ups and downs but the radical changes have included tremendous growth in more ways than just revenue in the last 24 months.

When we started this company I was just 23 years old and most of my partners were also in their 20s – we were just kids. But to everyone who ever believed in us, supported us, and took a chance on us helping them to achieve their goals in life, we thank you!!!

And we are committed to only getting better and better at helping deliver increased sales for our clients.

Much Love!

Rory and Team

Southwestern Consulting’s Co-founder, Rory Vaden, on Fox and Friends – Procrastinate on Purpose: 5 Permissions to Multiply Your Time

This weekend, I had the opportunity to be a guest on Fox and Friends national morning show to discuss Southwestern Consulting’s new book, Procrastinate On Purpose: 5 Permissions to Multiply Your Time.

We all struggle with time management. Everything we’ve ever heard about time management is all logical – tips and tricks, tools and technology, calendars and checklists. But time management isn’t just logical anymore, it’s emotional.

Key Takeaways:

  • Our feelings of guilt, worry, and fear dictate how we spend our time as much as anything.
  • Throw everything off your calendar and make it fight its way back on.
  • Anytime you say “yes” to one thing, you are simultaneously saying “no” to something else.

Watch the full Fox and Friends interview above!

To see a free full 1 hour webinar on How to Multiply Your Time click here: