I'm not so far removed from the gym floor that I forget what it was like to be up at 5 a.m. and heading to the gym to meet my first client; or to forget driving lazily home at 9 p.m. after I was finally finished with my last client of the day.

I loved training, in fact I still often miss it. I even joke with my wife about getting a job at the local 24hr Fitness in the evenings after the day wraps up at Fit Body Boot Camp Headquarters.

My point is the reasons I hear from trainers for their struggles to build a successful business are pretty much the same as the reasons our clients have always given us; time and money being the top two.

We all have the same twenty four hours a day to work with. I often wonder what would it be like to follow my entrepreneurial hero Richard Branson around for a day. In my own life I now run three small companies and an international franchise while commuting almost weekly between two countries. Some would say I'm busy.

Truth is I've always considered myself to be a lazy individual. I openly say I don't like to work. Sure, maybe it's just because I love what I do so much that it doesn't feel like work most of the time. I'd say it's more because I've learned some important little tricks along the way.

1.You only have 3-4 good hours per day. I truly believe this, and let me explain what I mean by that. You know that feeling you get when you're inspired, everything happens faster, it just feels easier; in fact, I'm experiencing that right now as I write this. When you get bogged down with a lot of different tasks you burn up emotional energy. I find after 3-4 hours emotionally I'm worn out; getting anything that involves more than mindless action done efficiently after this point is like digging a six-foot hole with a spoon. Keep this in the back of your mind for the next few days see where that zone is each day where things just happen faster.

2. Harness the "Magic Time." I think Craig Ballantyne coined this term. It's essentially those hours when you feel energized and thoughts, problem solving and creative efforts just happen and occur faster. What time of day that is differs for each person but if you completed step 1, you might just have an idea when yours is.

3. The whiteboard. I have two big whiteboards in my office, and a notebook with me just about anywhere I go. Any time I think of something that needs to be done I just scribble it on the board or in my notebook. Then you just need to understand what to do with them once they are there, that's next.

4. The nightly ritual, pick your big three. We all have these massive to-do lists, especially as a solopreneur that's required to wear all the hats. It's completely overwhelming and is, in my opinion a root cause for procrastination. Yet if you just consistently crossed one thing off your list each day I can almost guarantee you'll be successful beyond what you ever thought possible. So here's what you need to do: at the end of each day pick the three things you will work on tomorrow. Write them on a small piece of paper to keep in your pocket. Any spare minutes you have tomorrow dive right into one of those tasks until one or all of them are complete.

You can't wait until the morning to pick your tasks, because your subconscious will work hard through the night making them easier to complete. And if you do wait until the morning you’ll sacrifice a great deal of your emotional energy just choosing the tasks, or you might even avoid picking any at all because it becomes so overwhelming.

These four things are the secret; I'm convinced of it, this is how entrepreneurs manage to manage so much. There are two final things to add to this, they come last because they are just me personal preference and ideas.

I find it helpful to have one day a week that I keep my schedule clear, so that I have no strain at all on my "magic time" that those few hours become the most productive of any all week and are dedicated to the major or more complex projects on my list.

The final thing comes as words of wisdom from a friend. In recent years he experienced a traumatic brain injury, one that required prolonged healing and long periods of inactivity and avoidance of electronic stimulation. At one point his physician demanded he only use his brain for just two hours per day for a period of three months. The rest of the time he needed to be resting, ideally in a quiet dark room.

Imagine trying to hold your career together in just two hours a day, you would have to carefully choose what you spent your time doing. Seems to me this complies with the 80/20 rule we all know and one of my favorite authors Tim Feriss might have told a story similar to this.

Bottom line is your success is not determined by how long you spend working (even though you may need to presently work more than you like) but rather will ultimately be decided by what you choose to do with your time.

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How much of your time would you estimate you spend growing your business?