We have all heard of popular sayings and expressions like “Win Win”, “Two birds with one Stone” and other similar ones. The idea here being that we should be more efficient in life, careers, finances, by doing more with less. In other words, use one hand to do two different things and 2 hands to do 4 things and so on.
From a financial and personal growth prospective, this is about doing more in less time, thus stretching one valuable and finite resource that we all want more of: time! If we are time-stretched and since we can’t create more of it, why not do more in the same time it would take you to do one thing? In fact, we can go even further and do multiple things at once, thus making it a win-win-win proposition. Compounded over time, you are effectively freezing or even creating your own time, since the alternative would have cost you a lot more in terms of how long it will take. Some of the personal examples below may not seem as obvious as they seem simple and obvious enough, but they are powerful and add up over time. In fact, as you go over them, you will realize you may already be doing some of these.
Staying home is a win-win-win proposition for me. I save on gas. Save on eating out. Get to study or read. The alternative is driving my car, where I am not only wasting gas, but also putting my mileage on car. Of course, there are these times when you want to go out to change scenery and that is fine once in a while.
Another example is when I go out for a walk, I am also learning by listening to podcasts or audiobooks. That is, I am doing personal development and learning, while improving my health by walking. This is something millions do on a daily basis, but may not have thought about the win-win benefits they are reaping.
Multiple incomes: In his book “The 10 Pillars of Wealth” ,Alex Becker argues that we need to separate our time from income if we are to become wealthy and have a lot more money than our 9-5 job can provide us with. In other words, just because we only have 24 hours in a day (2/3 of which is spent sleeping and socializing) doesn’t mean we are limited to making money in only those 9-5 hours. We have to have our own ‘Entrepreneurial hours’ where we have to pursue secondary side income, regardless of time of the day. This can come in the form of passive income that doesn’t require a lot of our time (dividend income, rental properties, online gigs, book sales, Youtube ads etc) .
When I did Uber as a side gig a few years ago, I would use the time between rides to listen to podcasts and audiobooks. In fact, I used the the idle time to study on my E-Reader for a technology-related certificate I was working on. This is an example of exploiting the time to do one profitable endeavor in order to do something else: perfect win-win example. The alternative would have been to sit idle between rides or listen to the news, and gain nothing in the end. And in fact, I ended up obtaining that certificate and that helped me with my career development and advancement.
To some of us, when we think of win-win, we think more along the lines of business. For example, a fairly negotiated deal may create a win-win for both parties. And by the same token, win-win may work between individuals, directly or indirectly. For example, if I make a charitable donation – with the first and true intention being to help others – only will I help others, I may also get a tax deduction as a result. The tax deduction is a by-product of the act of kindness and not the main intention, but it still creates a win-win situation.
While creating these win-win situations is great, there may be some limitations we need to manage or overcome. For example, for most, it is the inability to multi-task and the need to focus on one thing at a time. In fact, I am one of those strong proponents of focusing on one task at a time to ensure it is performed to perfection and no distractions. But most of the examples above involve one active task with another passive one in the background. While one task requires our full attention (e.g listening to an audiobook) , the other task may only require passive or subconscious attention (e.g walking) .
If you always think in terms of win-win – or triple win – you will exponentially improve your life and in a lot less time than the alternative. When doing an activity or task, think about whether you can make it a win-win proposition.