InterviewsPersonal Development

How to work less and live better by Bill O’Hanlon

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(Literal) Text Transcription of the video :

Olivier Roland: Bonjour mes rebelles intelligents. After the example of Phil last week, here is another one of someone who lives the 4-Hour Workweek lifestyle. It’s Bill O’Hanlon who is a renowned psychologist. He wrote like 30 or 40 books and most of them are authorities on the subject. And despite his success, he lives a very cool lifestyle.

So a few years ago in 2014, I wanted to interview him about how he does that and how other people can be inspired by him to work less and enjoy life more. So, here it is.

Hello Bill.

So, Bill is a renowned psychotherapist, a renowned author. Even in France, you are famous for your work around hypnosis, you were a student of Milton Erickson. And you are just about to release a new course about, the name is “Time spare”.

Bill O’Hanlon: Time to spare.

Olivier Roland: Yeah, time to spare.

Bill O’Hanlon: Having more time, a time abundance. You have more time than you need.

Olivier Roland: Yeah, it’s a really interesting topic because a lot of successful people like that you say are really so busy.

Bill O’Hanlon: Almost everybody I know that’s successful, that is done well in life, you ask them how they are and they say “Oh, I’m doing great but I’m so busy, I’m so busy. I’m just busy all the time.” And, I came from a place where I was a hippie, I had long hair, I played guitar and I wasn’t busy. But, I didn’t have any money.

Olivier Roland: Yeah.

Bill O’Hanlon: You know, I didn’t care about money, I didn’t want money. And then, I got tired of being poor and not having money. And, I became successful in my career. First, I was a psychotherapist. Then, I became an author, then a speaker. I was travelling around the world three or four times a month. And I was more money but too busy.

I didn’t have time to take care of myself. I even was annoyed at my friends, they wanted to spend time with me and I’m “Oh, I have to go and see my friends”. I love my friends but because I was so busy, it felt like a duty or a burden

Olivier Roland: You were addicted to work.

Bill O’Hanlon: Yes.

Olivier Roland: It was all your life.

Bill O’Hanlon: Work was very satisfying. You know, you make more money the more you work. You know, people admire you, your success. And so, there was a little addiction.

So, the first thing I did was, I realized I was handling money in not a good way. Number one, because I was so busy, I was indulging myself “Oh, I’ll upgrade to first class and pay thousands more dollars because I deserve it”.

to make more money

And so then, I would have to work more to make the money, to pay for all those fancy cars and big houses and new guitars or whatever it was. So,

Olivier Roland: It was a bad spiral.

Bill O’Hanlon: Yeah. You know, it was not good. And so, I started to plug the money leaks. So, the other thing I wasn’t paying attention to where my money was going. I was so busy, I didn’t pay attention to it because I was out of making the money and doing the work, addicted to work.

And so, I thought “Okay. First thing, I’m going to do is plug money leaks. Second thing, I’m do is plug time leaks.” There are people that just drain my time. They take too much time and so, “Okay, I’ve got to stop looking at emails so much, I’ve got to… Those people that aren’t adding value, not friends but business people, I don’t need to spend time with them. I can get somebody else to deal with them or I don’t spend time with them.” I have to stop those money leak.

And then, I was doing things really and efficiently. I was disorganized again because I was so busy and because I’m a naturally disorganized person. So, I got some help and I organized my whole house. And then, I got rid of things.

Olivier Roland: Yeah.

Bill O’Hanlon: Books, tapes… I had video tapes many from all my work through the years. Audio tapes and CDs and I digitized it all. I spent two years, hard time.

Olivier Roland: Two years.

Bill O’Hanlon: I would just go in my office and I would put a video in and I would digitize it into my Macintosh computer. And after two years, I had a bunch of hard drives and stored on the cloud and fewer things. When I had fewer things, more energy, more time and I could find anything I wanted.

Sometimes, I was telling you before we were talking that I have a lot of electronic equipment because I do videos and I do workshops. And I would sometimes not be able to find the piece of equipment because everything was so disorganized. So, I would buy another one and that was more money.

Olivier Roland: Having more disorder.

Bill O’Hanlon: And more disorder and more money.

Olivier Roland: Yeah.

Bill O’Hanlon: And so, starting to plug the leaks, it’s the first thing. The time leaks, the energy leaks, the money leaks. And so, there are people that drain your energy, there are things that drain your energy and the more things you have the more frozen energy. So, I started to unfreeze that energy.

Olivier Roland: So no more frozen energy.

Bill O’Hanlon: Yeah.

Olivier Roland: Interesting.

Bill O’Hanlon: Your objects are frozen energy and you have to buy a bigger house to store the objects.

Olivier Roland: Exactly, yeah. So, it’s interesting because how long did it take you to realize that you had too much clutter, too much you know,

Bill O’Hanlon: I knew it for many years but I didn’t know anything about it.

Olivier Roland: That’s the problem.

Bill O’Hanlon: It is. And then, I went through a crisis. I went through a divorce and I thought “I don’t want to live like this anymore.” The money’s not worth it, it is love and the quality of life. And, I read the 4-Hour Workweek.

Olivier Roland: Yeah.

Bill O’Hanlon: And I also read another book called “Your money or your life”.

Olivier Roland: Oh yeah.

Bill O’Hanlon: And this was a book about just paying attention to your money and being conscious of what comes in and what goes out. So, there are four areas where I think you can plug leaks and be more effective.

So, I’d said money, energy,

Olivier Roland: Yes.

Bill O’Hanlon: Managing your energy, attention, what do you pay attention to? Because some things capture your attention you know and Angry Birds on the computer, or going on Facebook for hours.

Olivier Roland: Distractions.

Bill O’Hanlon: When you think “Oh I’ll be on there for a few minutes”, two hours later you look up and you’ve been on Facebook for two hours.

Olivier Roland: Exactly.

how to work less and live better

Bill O’Hanlon: So, is that what I want to do? If that’s what I want to do with my time that’s great. Where do I want to put my energy and attention and time? And how do I want to spend my money?

So, first you plug the leaks and then you add more without adding more activities. So, you become more effective which is one of the reasons we met each other because you know a method for making more money without having to work so much.

Olivier Roland: Exactly.

Bill O’Hanlon: And, when you’re working in a company or, I was when I was a psychotherapist, I had to do more work to earn more money. And if you can learn ways to work more effectively passive income, residual income, learning more effective marketing. So, for the same amount of work, you make a lot more money. I think that’s… I went on a quest to clean stuff out, to stop the energy, money, attention and time drains. And then, to be more effective when I did work, to make more money.

Olivier Roland: And so, I think there are lot of people that are watching us right now and say “Yeah, yeah I want to do that.” So, what would be the first step for them? The very first step.

Bill O’Hanlon: First step is to raise your consciousness about this because when you’re so busy, you’re not paying attention. You know, I didn’t know how much my bills were, I didn’t know how much money I had to gather each month to pay my bills. And I sat down and wrote it all down because it is on that “Your money or your life” book. And, I was a little shocked.

Olivier Roland: So, you felt more secure?

Bill O’Hanlon: Yes. How much I owed? How much debt I had? How much I had to have each month? And then, I began to reduce how much I had to have. So, stopping the leakage, it’s raising awareness first then stopping the leakage. Those are the easiest things to do first.

Olivier Roland: Yeah, you mean because most of people are not aware of what they really need.

Bill O’Hanlon: Right.

Olivier Roland: And so, they just keep wanting more and more and more.

Bill O’Hanlon: Well, I think that’s a different problem too.

Olivier Roland: Okay.

Bill O’Hanlon: And so, I heard this story a while ago of these two famous authors in the United States and they were invited to a party in a really big hedge fund manager’s house. And, his living room was bigger than both of their houses combined.

And, one of the authors says to the other one who was a best-selling author, he said “Doesn’t it bother you that this man, this hedge fund trader makes more in one week than you made in your whole life with your books?” He goes “No, it doesn’t bother me”. He said “Come on, you must be envious” And he said “No, I’m not envious because I have something this man doesn’t have”. “What could you have that he hasn’t? He got everything.” He says “I know the meaning of enough”

And so, the question is what is enough?

Olivier Roland: Exactly.

Bill O’Hanlon: You know, we meet people because we’re in a group together that have a lot of money and they seem to want more and more. If you have a bucket,

Olivier Roland: They are just so busy

Bill O’Hanlon: They are so busy, they don’t have a lifestyle.

Olivier Roland: Yeah.

Bill O’Hanlon: If you have a bucket and there’s a hole in the bottom of it, no matter how much success or money you put into it, it never stays.

Olivier Roland: Yeah.

Bill O’Hanlon: So, you have to figure out what the hole in the bucket is and find out what’s enough.

Finally, making it, you’re enough and it’s enough. It’s enough money, it’s enough status, it’s enough love and it is enough acceptance. What’s enough?

Olivier Roland: That’s a problem for entrepreneurs because most successful entrepreneurs are successful because they wanted badly to be where they are now.

Bill O’Hanlon: They do.

Olivier Roland: So, when do you…

Bill O’Hanlon: Well.

Olivier Roland: … say okay it’s enough? When do you say alright I want to… you know?

Bill O’Hanlon: Well, I think that that’s when you need to make a change. And for me, I had to go through a crisis. I went through a divorce, it was very painful and I’d have to rethink the strategy that got you here, that made you so successful. Maybe the thing that makes you unsuccessful in other areas like in my personal relationship. Or, in my relationship with myself. I didn’t have time to exercise, I wasn’t taking care of myself and so maybe after a while, you have a heart attack because you overeat.

Olivier Roland: Exactly.

Bill O’Hanlon: Or you don’t exercise, or you don’t sleep enough and you become unhealthy. And then, you have a crisis and you say “I wanted to change my life”.

So, usually it takes a crisis but it would be nice if it didn’t take a crisis and you could just make a change. What got you here was good because it helped you be successful and it may not get you to the next place you want to go to.

Olivier Roland: All right, Great. So, first step is raising your awareness.

Bill O’Hanlon: Yes.

Olivier Roland: And, when they do that? What will be the first action?

Bill O’Hanlon: Yes. I think just writing it down. For me, writing down what I spent my time doing,

Olivier Roland: Yes.

Bill O’Hanlon: Writing down what I spent my money on. How much was coming in. How much was going out. Writing down what gives me energy. What drains my energy.

Olivier Roland: Oh, interesting.

Bill O’Hanlon: While writing down what I spend my time doing and what I don’t want to spend my time doing. So, most people have a to-do list: I need to… you know, write down everything I need to get done. I began to make a not to-do list.

Olivier Roland: Oh, interesting.

Bill O’Hanlon: I put it on my bathroom mirror, I put it on my computer.

Olivier Roland: Yeah. I don’t want to do that.

Bill O’Hanlon: Don’t do these things. I don’t want to do these things or I don’t want to spend time with this person or these people.

I don’t want it, these are energy draining activities, people and things. I don’t want those things.

Olivier Roland: So yeah, you have to do a list of people that are draining your energy too.

Bill O’Hanlon: Yes, that’s right.

Olivier Roland: Seneca was saying it’s really interesting that people are fighting hard for their position, for their house. If someone wants to enter in your house and he is not invited, you will fight back.

Bill O’Hanlon: That’s right.

Olivier Roland: But, if someone try to conquer your time, you will not defend your time as much.

Bill O’Hanlon: That’s right because watch “Oh, would you need to do this for me or can you do this for me?” And that’s why I don’t answer my telephone, and that the answering machine answer it. And then, I decide when I want to do it.

I don’t look at my email anymore, I have someone to screen my email and then send me only the ones I need to do. Because, otherwise people expect something of you, “Hey, I emailed you and you didn’t email me back.” “I didn’t agree to email you back.” “No.” “Thank you.”

So, I like that analogy. You protect your house.

Olivier Roland: Yeah.

Bill O’Hanlon: This is the house of your energy, your attention, your time and your money.

Olivier Roland: So, you have to not be afraid of pissing off some people.

Bill O’Hanlon: You will.

Olivier Roland: Because they are the wrong people.

Bill O’Hanlon: Anytime you change, you will upset somebody. But, most people will understand. And I explain it, when someone wants something I may say “Oh, you know it would sound interesting but I really, I am fiercely protective of my time and my energy because I want to spend it with the ones that I love.”

Like I love my family, my friends and they say “Oh, yes I understand, me too”. I wish I had more time for my family. So, if you explain it a little more diplomatically, you won’t piss them off so much. But still, they may be unhappy because you haven’t given them what they want but that’s okay.

Olivier Roland: Awesome. Right, thank you for all these awesome tips. So, if you still watching this video, I think it’s because you are really interested. So, please do this first action step, raise your awareness, do those lists that Bill just gave because it’s really easy to do, right? You just have to do it.

Bill O’Hanlon: Right.

Olivier Roland: So, please do it if not, it will just be an intellectual masturbation. So, thank you for watching. Thank you Bill.

Bill O’Hanlon: Yes and you can come to get a free gift and how to start, on enough time and money.com

Olivier Roland: All right. I will put a link under the video.

Bill O’Hanlon: Okay.

Olivier Roland: Thank you, bye.

Voilà, mes rebelles intelligents. I hope you enjoyed this video. Like usual, feel free to receive this complementary content to the video, an extract from my upcoming book in English that is already a best-seller in French. The extract is three principles to win in every field of your life back by science. And, as you will see it shares a lot of the principles that Bill shares also in this video.

So, to receive it, just click on the thumbnails that appears here. Also, feel free to watch this complementary video and feel free to click on the button to subscribe and the channel to not miss one of the amazing videos that will be published here.

Thank you for watching, see you next time and the meantime, don’t forget: be intelligent, be rebel and be part of people who work less and enjoy life more.

Tchao.

 

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