How to Work Less and Enjoy Your Life More with Joe Sanok
“So if you’re treating your business like a baby, that means you’re inappropriately loving it. There are things in your business that you have to stop doing, whereas as a parent you’re going to always love that kid (hopefully! Hopefully you’re a good parent!). So even the way we think about our businesses — oh, I’ve raised it! It’s my baby! — No! This is a business. This is something you hope to contribute to the world. And you may need to walk away from it at some point.”
– Joe Sanok
Meet Joe Sanok
Joe Sanok is the author of Thursday is the New Friday: How to work fewer hours, make more money, and spend time doing what you want. It examines how the four-day workweek boosts creativity and productivity. Joe has been featured on Forbes, GOOD Magazine, and The Smart Passive Income Podcast. He is the host of the popular The Practice of the Practice Podcast, which is recognized as one of the Top 50 Podcasts worldwide with over 100,000 downloads each month. Bestselling authors, experts, scholars, and business leaders and innovators are featured and interviewed in the 550 plus podcasts he has done over the last six years.
In This Episode…
Are you interested in being more productive during your work time and in having more free time in your weekly schedule? In this Money Skills for Therapists episode, Linzy talks with Joe Sanok, author of several books including his newest release that just came out this month, Thursday is the New Friday: How to Work Fewer Hours, Make More Money, and Spend Time Doing What You Want.
Linzy and Joe discuss several vital topics for therapists such as (1) the importance of downtime to regenerate and be more productive, (2) when to hand off responsibilities, and (3) how to use your income to buy help. They also discuss tips about how to ensure that you stay curious and excited about your career while also enjoying your life beyond your career.
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For more about Joe’s books and keynote speaking: joesanok.com
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Joe [00:00:01] So if you’re treating your business like a baby, that means you’re inappropriately loving it. There’s things in your business that you have to stop doing, whereas as a parent, you’re going to always love that kid. Hopefully, hopefully you’re a good parent. And so even the way we think about our business is, Oh, I’ve raised it, it’s my baby. No. This is a business. This is something that you hope to contribute to the world. And you may need to walk away from it at some point.
Linzy [00:00:30] Welcome to the Money Skills For Therapists podcast, where we answer this question. How can therapists and health practitioners go from money shame and confusion to feeling calm and confident about their finances and get money really working for them and both their private practice and their lives? I’m your host, Linzy Bonham, therapist turned money coach and creator of the course Money Skills For Therapists.
Linzy [00:00:51] Welcome to the Money Skills For Therapists podcast. Today’s episode is with Joe Sanok. Joe Sanok is a therapist turned business owner. He is a hugely successful podcaster, and he is releasing a book in October called Thursday Is The New Friday. The book is all about how to work less, be more productive, and actually enjoy your life, which is a puzzle that I think so many of us therapists are trying to figure out all the time. How do we actually make our businesses work for us and enjoy the rest of our lives when it’s so easy to turn our businesses into a kind of agency-like situations where we’re working so, so much. If you feel overworked in your private practice or any other businesses that you have on the go. If you find that you struggle to let go of tasks because you think that you’re kind of the only person who can do x y z for your practice, and if you want to develop a healthier and more balanced relationship to working and private practice than this episode is for you. Joe brings up so much interesting history how our relationship to work and time has been formed and how we bring that into our work as private practitioners, and also how there’s some key steps that we can take to actually start to improve our relationship with work and enjoy our lives and be better at the work that we do for it. So without further ado, here’s Joe Sanok.
Linzy [00:02:32] All right, so welcome, Joe, to the podcast.
Joe [00:02:35] I’m so glad to be here. Thanks for having me, Linzy.
Linzy [00:02:37] Yeah, you’re welcome. So you have a book coming out in October and it’s on a topic that I think is extremely relevant to therapists because this is something – a puzzle that I see a lot of therapists and health practitioners trying to solve all the time, which is how do you work less but make more money and actually have time to do what you want with your life and spend time doing the things that you enjoy? It’s kind of like this puzzle that I feel like a lot of therapists are turning over in their minds often.
Joe [00:03:03] Yeah, I think that so often therapists just start with the old model, but they just start seeing clients and then more clients. And then they’re on all the insurances, and they just – everywhere – aren’t even evaluating having any sense of intention. So instead of starting with, OK, which insurances should I be on locally? How much do they pay? How many clients are there? Is it even worth the hassle? And then saying, Well, what could I get for private pay? Should I compare those two before I start taking clients. And then looking, do I want to be out of network? And so even just starting with, what’s my intention with this practice? Because too often what happens is they don’t have that intention and then they get busy. Maybe not the right kind of busy. It could be on insurances that you really – it’s not your ideal client. And then you find that you’re barely making what you made at the old agency work. And then you’re burned out and you’re stressed out and you’ve just given yourself a job. You don’t have a business. You just – if you don’t show up, you don’t get paid. If your kids are sick or there’s, you know, things that just happen, you don’t get paid. And so then you don’t take time off because, you know, if I take this vacation, in addition to paying for the vacation, I’m going to lose two grand this week. Dang, that’s like six grand week when you take a whole family away, like, we can’t afford that. And so then they just keep on working and working and working when there’s just so many better ways that you can do it.
Linzy [00:04:19] Goodness, yeah. I think that coming out of agencies, which most of us do. Yeah, you inherit this model that was never for your benefit in the first place. But we build private practices that are entirely in that model. And it’s kind of like it happens to you unless you’re really taking that empowered, intentional stance that you’re talking about, which most of us don’t. Realistically. You end up creating those same conditions that you were trying to escape when you left agency work. So zooming out on that even more, Joe, your book, Thursday Is The New Friday, is taking a new take on work and productivity. And I wanted to start with this idea of the 40 hour workweek. So the 40 hour workweek is something, personally, I’ve always been very skeptical of. It’s never really worked for me, and it’s this model that we inherit through agency work because most of the time we’re working 40 hours. And so that even when we’re in private practice and even when we’re self-employed, often most of us are still thinking about our work in terms of 40 hours. Right? I’m curious. Tell me a little bit about the history of the 40 hour workweek and how it’s kind of shaping how we work, even broader, even outside of therapists?
Joe [00:05:25] Yeah. So for me, whenever I almost get anything that I’m learning, I want to know the history behind it because oftentimes we can’t know where we are or where we’re headed unless we know that history. So I’m really glad that you asked about that because I actually want to go back a little bit before the 40 hour workweek started back to the Babylonians about 4000 years ago. So the Babylonians, when they looked up at the sky, they saw the Sun, the Moon, the Earth, Mercury, Venus, Mars, and Jupiter. It’s a seven big, bright things in the sky, and they said, we should have a seven day week. And that’s literally where the seven day week came from. The Egyptians had an eight day week, the Romans had a 10 day week. It wasn’t until 300 or so when the emperor of Rome became a Christian and then looked at the Bible said, Oh, there’s seven day week. The Torah where that seven day week was written down was in Babylon. And so, it was when the Jews were in exile there that the Torah was written down. So even the idea of the seven day week. It makes absolutely no sense in nature. We could just as easily have a five day week and have seventy three weeks in a year. A year makes sense, it’s how long it takes us to go around the sun. A day makes sense, we spin for a day. But there’s no seven days in nature. So let’s just start with the seven day week is completely arbitrary. So fast forward to the late 1800s/early 1900s, the average person was working 10 to 14 hours a day, six or seven days a week. They were working all the freaking time. And so when Henry Ford in 1926 says I want to do the 40 hour workweek, that was a huge step for the evolution of business. It was a huge step for workers. It was a huge step in many ways. And his primary reason for doing the 40 hour workweek was to sell more cars to his own employees because he had the idea that if you have to work on a Saturday and Sunday, you’re not going to want to get there faster. But if you have those days off and you have a fun place to go, to go with your family or go out and recreate or whatever you do, you’re going to want a car to get there faster. So it was primarily to sell cars to Ford employees that he switched over to the 40 hour workweek. So then that takes off less than a hundred years ago. So then it’s like, OK, we made up the seven day week we made up the 40 hour workweek. We now are the generation that is leaving the first pandemic. Who knows if it will be the last. But we as a whole society across the globe have said to ourselves, why do we work this way? We’ve had a global experiment happen where we have disrupted work and we get to now say, do we still believe like the industrialists? Do we think of people like machines like they’re just, you know, going down the conveyor belt? Or do we think people are a little different than that? And I would argue we’ve left the industrial mindset already and that the way we view time is actually one of just the last remnants of that industrialist era.
Linzy [00:08:06] Right. And that’s especially interesting thinking about therapy work because sometimes I see this this attitude in therapists where we think like, well, I work 40 hours, I’m going to make myself a therapy machine. I’m going to do as much therapy within those 40 hours as I possibly can, right? But I would argue that therapy work is very different from industrial work and working in a factory. We’re drawing on very different parts of ourselves and very different skills that maximizing them is not necessarily actually to the benefit of your client, even.
Joe [00:08:37] And to say that we do our most creative, innovative work when we’re maxed out and stressed out? I mean, would you really want your therapist – say you’re going through something really rough, whatever it is, and you know, you are the fortieth client that this person has seen this week and you show up to your therapist. Are they going to be as creative as they are on Monday morning, when hopefully they’ve taken a break for the weekend? Or maybe they didn’t even take a break for the weekend. They fielded all sorts of texts from clients, they worked on their website, they worked on their blog. They have no sense of boundaries so that they can enjoy their family or hobbies. Like, is that person going to really be the most creative therapist and be able to help their clients the most? I mean, I would argue, no. Like we know this, that deep down, our best ideas don’t come when we’re stressed out. You know, it’s like when we’re in the shower and you have that idea or you’re out for a walk, or a run, or maybe a long drive, like when our brains are rested, that’s when we start to make these these neuro connections between things that we couldn’t see before.
Linzy [00:09:30] Right? Yeah. And I think in terms of clinical work, you know, I certainly know for me, I’ve noticed when I have space in my schedule, my brain’s been working away in the background on something about a client that I would not be able to be doing if I was seeing five other clients in that space. And so when that client comes back the next week, suddenly I’m taking this new, different approach because of the downtime I took, my brain was able to kind of like process and think about something in a new way that wouldn’t have been available if I was just seeing other clients and doing that output that whole time. So going into that idea then of expanded creativity and even maybe productivity, I know in your book you talk about the neuroscience, which is right up therapist alley and also some case studies about how taking this different approach can actually increase those things – makes us more creative, makes us more productive. Tell me about that.
Joe [00:10:19] Yeah. So every summer I host an event called Slow Down School. I didn’t do it in 2020 or 2021, but I’ve hosted for many years before that. And we fly therapists into northern Michigan, I pick them up in a big yellow school bus, and I don’t actually drive the school bus. Let me clarify that. So I have a bus driver pick us up in a big yellow school bus, and then we slowly drive out to Lake Michigan and we stay on this beautiful campus on the water. And for two days, we genuinely slow down. We go for hikes. The only time they’re supposed to use their phones is to take pictures. I bring in massage therapists and yoga teachers, and it’s just this amazing slowing down. Even our executive chef has partnerships with local farmers, so we know where the kale came from and the carrots came from. And it’s just – we set it up so that we can genuinely relax for a couple of days. And then Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday morning, we run full tilt towards their businesses. And this therapist, Michael Glavin from the Chicagoland area is such a great example. I talk about in the book of what we can get done when we slow down. So Michael has this amazing couples therapy clinic. He brings in interns, he has extra clinicians there, it’s a group practice, and his model with with counseling work with couples is a really unique model, and he has some great data that backs it up. And so for years, he had been really think about like, how do I start writing about this and sharing it and training therapists? And he was in this mastermind group and he was making kind of average progress. And there were times when, you know, he wasn’t writing it down as much as he wanted. And so he comes to Slow Down School, slows down for a couple of days, kind of steps out of his comfort zone. And the first day of sprinting, when I teach him the sprint approach, I ring the bell, everyone goes and does their sprints, and in 20 minutes, Michael outlines the first nine chapters of his book, with five major points on each one. In 20 minutes.
Linzy [00:12:07] Oh my gosh.
Joe [00:12:08] And so it’s like, OK. So yes, the Michaels of the world could just keep kind of running the rat race, and you just keep seeing people. Or if you’re going to level up and you’re going to build streams of income, that aren’t just reliant on you showing up. For him, that was writing the book and creating this curriculum. That was what was important. That was that next big step to move out of just the job type of business and to move actually into a business type of business. So when we slow down, we then can allow that that top level stuff to come out, but the other side of it is when we give ourselves less time, are we going to work on the crappy stuff or are we going to work in the thing that actually matters? And so, you know, take the average clinician, they’re like, I can’t work four days a week. I have to work five. Really? Because like, if you work four, are you going to do your best work in that time and drop the ball on your worst work? Or are you going to do all the stupid stuff and then drop the ball on the top level stuff? You’re naturally going to have your best work rise to the top. So you may drop the ball on a few things. You may stop taking out the trash or forget the vacuum. And all of a sudden, two weeks later, you’re like, Oh, this place is a pit. Well, what does that tell you about the priority of cleaning your own office as the owner of your business? Maybe you should have a cleaning person come in. Maybe you should outsource that. If all of a sudden all of your billing starts to back up? That gives you some information. Maybe it’s time to hire a biller because you’re doing your top level stuff. So when we actually reduce the amount of time that people work, they end up doing better and better work as a result of it.
Linzy [00:13:30] Right, yeah. I mean, it sounds very clarifying, right? By creating that little bit of like constriction, it’s really going to be clear what is just you and you know, I think about this in terms of the business growth that I’m doing. What are the CEO tasks? What is what is only you or your gift can do that? And what is something that somebody else could be doing for $15 an hour that frees up your bandwidth for those more important, bigger impact things?
Joe [00:13:53] Well, and then you start to outpace the competition because you’re putting your time into those top level things. And so it’s like, you know, several years ago, I was saying, my big step is if I can get consulting clients that are twice the cost of my clinical clients, that’s like one person paying for two hours. And then if I do that really well now I’m just sprinting in that direction, then I can jump into mastermind groups or a membership community. And then, you know, the people that are just kind of limping along, you haven’t just outpaced them in like double the time, you’re 10 or 20 times farther ahead, just because you focus so much in that particular area.
Linzy [00:14:27] Right. And that’s that’s a really interesting kind of trajectory that you’ve laid out there because I think a lot of therapists in private practice might have these dreams of something bigger. This like hope of like, well, one day I’d like to be a speaker. One day I want to start a group practice or I want to create a course. But they are so focused on what’s in front of them right now and just not being able to let go of that. That even taking that first step into thinking, OK, well, how can I do a little bit less work and have even more impact for more money? Even that step feels scary for them to take. Right. And so I’m curious about what you see as the relationship between money and impact, right? Like on this podcast, we dig into finances, and a lot of therapists want to have that bigger impact, but also might be nervous or maybe even a little bit scared of making money. Tell me, how do you see money relate to to what you’re talking about here?
Joe [00:15:23] I see money as a multiplier. And what I mean by that is that – just how you were saying I could put 15 dollars into this. So say you charge 150 per session and you do one extra session and you have someone that you can pay $15 an hour. Granted, there might be other costs there, but you can then buy 10 hours of time for that one hour. So every hour that you bootstrap it and this and that, you are the most overpaid person doing this fifteen an hour thing. Yes. So the way I think about just how I kind of run everything is, I want to get the basics down really well and get those plates spinning and then hand those plates off to other people to keep them spinning. And so to really look at what in my practice, we’re just starting with someone who owns a practice, what my practice is essential to me. You’re not going to have someone else show up for counseling to be the counselor if someone has signed up for you to be their therapist. So, let’s say therapy is number one. And then there might be a handful of other things, but for the most part, everything else you could handoff. And then we can beg the question of, are you the only therapist in the practice that can do therapy? Maybe you need to add some 1099s or W-2s so that you can then get the plates spinning, have some predictable income, and then once those are going and you’re giving feedback, you’re not just handing it off and saying, do what I do, but I’m not going to give you any feedback. You have to give that feedback. You have to say, you know what? You’re in my emails, if say, you have someone that’s going to check your emails, which would be very hard for a lot of therapists to give up. First, you have to disclose to your clients, Hey, I’m having my executive assistant take this over so that I can do more therapy. She will always disclose when she’s responding. I just want you to know that she’s reading it and need you to sign this thing, saying that you’re aware of that. So I’m protecting myself. So then we give feedback on how those emails are going. You know, if there’s an email that your assistant should have responded to, maybe you just BCC them. And so then you’re learning over time. And so then, once those plates are spinning, now that money has bought you the ability to do bigger, more impactful work. And if those plates are spinning and it’s predictable income and you know your budget and all those basics, then you can take bigger risks over on the other side because it’s something that you can fail fiercely. You can say, I’m going to try to not just make a course, I want to make five courses and a membership community, I want to be on 20 podcasts next month. And if none of that comes true. OK, I still have my money over here from where the plates are spinning, and so that money really opens up the ability to take much bigger risks because you’re not basing the big jumps in your life on making money. It’s on, I’m going to make a big jump and open some doors here.
Linzy [00:17:49] So that money actually opens up that opportunity to have an even bigger impact than that one on one client session would be. It’s kind of like that enabler to doing even more and something that I’m hearing Joe as you’re talking that I think can be a real kind of falling down point for people who do start this path of outsourcing and getting help is sometimes what I notice is like group practice owners, for instance, who suddenly get help. Then they have this extra time on their hands and we’re like, Well, do I really need a VA to answer my emails, like, maybe I could just jump back in there. And my argument to that is like, that’s a very terrible demotion you’re giving yourself. If you can be making 250 an hour, why would you jump in and do your VA’s $15 job? But I’m wondering for you, for somebody in that position who has done these first steps of opening up this space, what would be their next steps? I mean, one thing I’m thinking of is that they should be working less.
Joe [00:18:36] I have this whole section about the overvaluing of work and the undervaluing of fun. And even just thinking about – so that example you just gave this person is making 250 an hour, they jump back in and they’re doing all these things, maybe even doing more therapy. What does that say about, for one, your trust in your team? It shows you don’t trust them. It shows that you don’t think that they’re going to be able to do a good job with what you have tasked them to do. So you’re basically telling people you just hired that you think they’re crap, OK? That’s probably not a healthy environment to have. Second, what is that saying about how much you need to be needed? Maybe you do need to be needed, but do we want our volunteer work to be within our business or do we want to do it somewhere else? I mean, I remember a number of years ago I handed off doing every single podcast image to Sam. Sam’s, my chief marketing officer, now. But at the time I was, I would record it. Then I would spend two hours making this beautiful image. I’m artistic. I loved it. I got a lot of fulfillment out of it. Ooh, look how cool that looks. And then I handed it off to her thinking, she’s never going to do it like I do it. And she didn’t. But she needed some feedback. She needed some, some help. But then eventually she got better than I did at it. And you know where I have my art now, it’s downstairs and I do watercolors for fun. It’s like, I just do it for fun instead of within the business. And so to be able to then say, I have a bookend to my day, I am done now. I can close my computer. I give myself permission to be a dad with my two awesome girls, to go on adventures, to go paint. I’m learning to play November rain on the piano because I think that’s an awesome Guns N Roses song. So it’s just like you get to do these things. But for high achievers, sometimes it has to be that you put in these blocks of things that are in your free time that you say, I’m going to do a one minute plank every day or I’m going to go to the beach five times this summer. When you schedule those things in – I think that’s the first point that most people need really need to have something there. If they’re just left to their own devices, they’re probably going to go back to work because they’ve overvalued it too much.
Linzy [00:20:36] Yeah. And I think in in therapy work and health practitioner work, especially if you tend to be that helper who needs to be needed and derives your value from that, it is easy to really make that your life. But as you’re talking, there’s this phrase like kind of bouncing in my head, which is a bit harsh, but it’s kind of like, you got to get a life. You have to make it so you have a life that’s interesting and a life that’s fulfilling and a life that houses your creativity and has meaningful relationships and adventures. So that work is not more interesting than your life.
Joe [00:21:03] Yeah. Well, you even think about how so many people think about their private practices. It’s my baby. It’s not your baby. There’s businesses that you need to kill and usually walk away from, and you just send into foster care. Like, I’m not going to do that to my kid, my kid I will love unconditionally. So if you’re treating your business like a baby, that means you’re inappropriately loving it. There’s things in your business that you have to stop doing. Whereas as a parent, you’re going to always love that kid. Hopefully, hopefully, you’re a good parent. And so even the way we think about our business is, Oh, I’ve raised and it’s my baby. No. This is a business. This is something that you hope to contribute to the world. And you may need to walk away from it at some point.
Linzy [00:21:43] Yeah, I love that. That’s like such appropriate boundaries around a business. Rather than this kind of like mixy – and also, like my business is me, and my value can be something that gets tied up
Joe [00:21:52] And my ego’s, all in it with my success and my failure. And if you can walk away from the ego side of it within your business, you’re going to be unstoppable because you’ll try things and fail and be like, great, that gave me data. In the book, I talk about the three internal inclinations, and it’s curiosity, an outsider’s perspective, and an ability to move on it. And just that idea of curiosity instead of it being pass/fail, like we were taught all through grad school, to say, Well, that’s interesting. You fail, quote fail. And then you’re like, Oh, why did that happen? What data do I have about my clients, my audience? Whatever that quote failure is, top achievers actually are curious about it, and they don’t view it as pass fail. They view it all as data that they’re taking in.
Linzy [00:22:32] 100 percent, I’m so glad you brought that up because I was really curious, I know you have these internal inclinations. I was about to ask you about them. So curiosity being the first is like, so speaking to my trauma therapist heart because this is like was always my approach with clinical clients. And it’s my approach with coaching clients is like, be curious, like step back, be curious. And and in my case, it’s like, be curious about what happens when you sit down to work on your money. Do you suddenly want to vomit? Oh, that’s interesting information. Take that in. Maybe what’s that about? But I’m hearing in our businesses, this data point is so essential, and I know for me, my business is a little bit different than private practice at this point. But we do our key performance indicators every Monday. Every Monday, my team sits down and we like all contribute numbers to the spreadsheet and we look at it and we’re curious together and we problem solve like, huh? Suddenly, people aren’t registering for our webinar. Suddenly people aren’t showing up and we come to it with curiosity and it is so fun. It is so much funner and more engaging and more productive than making it a story about us failing or who we are or that nobody wants what we do. It really unlocks this whole new way of being in your business.
Joe [00:23:36] Yeah. And you think about the narrative we’re given. When I entered the chapter on curiosity, I try to start with kind of a blank slate. Like if I was just brainstorming curiosity, what would my questions be without any of the data or direction I want to go? And the first thing that came to mind was Curiosity killed the cat, and where did that come from? So in 1910, the front page of The Washington Post said Curiosity killed the cat. So for five days there’d been this cat stuck in a chimney, and it was like national news. So a very slow news week. Very quiet time right before World War One. So front page, this curiosity killed the cat is all about this cat that got stuck in a chimney and it died. It was sad. But think about what that teaches us and our kids. If you’re curious, you’re going to die. Is that even accurate? No. No. Like the other day, my daughters were outside. They’re six and 10, and then my nieces who are five and three, and they’re just playing. And then they all stopped. And when things get quiet with kids, you know what’s going on out there. And they found a dead mouse and there is this dead mouse, all four of them were standing around looking at like with curiosity kind of horror. And then they started asking questions like, Why do you think the mouse died? Is an owl going to come eat the mouse? Should we put it in the woods? Should we bury the mouse? Like all these questions and curiosity. We have that as kids, we have unending curiosity because it’s all new to us. Now as adults, at some point we lose or sway away from that. And if we can return to that and find that natural inclination towards curiosity, that’s where we unlock so much within our businesses.
Linzy [00:25:03] I like that so much. And so tell me about the other two. Curiosity was the first.
Joe [00:25:07] Yeah, the second one is an outsider perspective. And so you look at top achievers that oftentimes they have an outsider perspective, and you may have even experienced this if you join a new nonprofit or something, you come in and you’re like, That’s weird, why do you do it that way? What is this system? I remember every Monday I worked as a foster care supervisor. Every Monday. Every foster care worker and the three supervisors all got together in this like 50 person meeting and went through all these clients. And I just remember running the numbers on how much it costs the agency for that one hour to have everyone just sit around. Why do we do this? This is ridiculous. I’d rather just meet with my own team and talk through our team needs rather than sit around with like 40 or 50 people. And so those outsider perspectives are really valuable. We see it with, you know, Einstein moved countries all over. Elon Musk was raised in South Africa and in Canada and culturally was felt like he was out on the outside looking in. There was actually an interesting research study where they looked at the colors blue and the colors green. And so they had groups of six to eight people come together and the researcher would hold up a color and say, Is this blue or is this green? And you know, most of the time people agree that’s blue, that’s green, and there’s some they’re kind of in the middle where there’s a little bit of disagreement. But then the second part of the study, they did the same sort of thing, but brought in two researchers and those researchers occasionally in those middle colors when it was pretty clearly a blue. They would say green or when it was clearly green, they would say blue. And they found that statistically those researchers, as outsiders, had more influence over the group than they should have. And so there’s been other research studies that really show that outsiders actually have more influence than they often realize and that they’re able to sway crowds in ways that we wouldn’t expect. So we see that in a number of different areas. And then the third one is that we want to have the ability to move on it. And so by that, if we think about a spectrum on one side, we have speed and on the other side, we have accuracy. And so if I’m going to go under the knife at a hospital and my doctor, if she’s going to be cutting into me doing anything where I’m asleep, getting cut open, I don’t care how long it takes. She can be as accurate as she needs to be. Take your time. Yeah. Take your time. Take forever. But in most of our business, speed is going to trump accuracy every single time. And so, you know, throughout grad school, we’re taught, you know, write this paper, go to the writing lab, retool it and then turn it in for a final grade to get pass fail. That’s just not how the business world works. And so we want to focus on getting things done more than being paralyzed by perfection.
Linzy [00:27:29] Yeah. Oh my gosh, 100 percent on that last one. And that’s something that I notice with therapists around their finances, even, can be almost like a nonstarter is they’re so busy trying to be perfect that they do nothing at all. Right? There’s such a focus on this has to be perfect, and there’s no reason that it has to be perfect in finances or in business. There’s no reason that it has to be perfect. So what I’m hearing is like that imperfect action moving forward is way more valuable than being paralyzed or taking forever to accomplish something.
Joe [00:27:59] Yeah, I mean, you’re going to get the feedback as well. So imagine instead of spending two or three hours on one blog post that you’re going to do for your SEO and then you’re so burned out from that you’re like, I can only do that once, maybe twice a month. So you then are doing, you know, one or two blog posts a month versus, I’m going to set a timer and I’m going to write as much as I can in 30 minutes. I’m going to do it as fast as I can. I’m going to do three main steps on anxiety three main steps on depression. And you just, in those three hours, knock out six or seven blog posts and then you start to see your SEO work. Maybe catch some misspellings or something. So you go back in and you edit it. Maybe you cited a piece of research that later you realized was really bad research. So you go in and edit it. So what? And so it’s not like, this is going to be your final dissertation that’s on file at your college forever. This is a blog post, and most of what we do is that level where we don’t need to overthink it. We don’t need to be putting so much accuracy into it that it’s really the speed is where we’re going to see those big steps forward.
Linzy [00:28:56] OK, so coming to the end of our conversation, I have a question that I ask everybody and I’m going to ask you, although I’m going to tweak it a little bit because we’ve been talking more about work than money, which is great. So my question for you, Joe, is what advice would you give a therapist who’s listening today, who wants to start to take steps to improve their relationship, to work? Who like they’re listening and they’re hearing like, Oh, that’s me. Like, I’m working all the time. I’m paralyzed with perfectionism. I’m doing things I don’t need to be doing. What would be some advice on how to get started in changing this relationship for the better?
Joe [00:29:28] Yeah, I would say whenever they’re listening to this, look ahead to the next weekend and I want you to add something and I want you to subtract something. So I want you to add something that’s going to set you up to feel more relaxed and more in tune with yourself by Monday morning. So put that in first. Is it, you know what, I want to rent a movie or stream a movie with my kids, and we’re going to order pizza out. Is it going to be, there’s some friends I haven’t connected with in a while, let’s have drinks on the deck. Is it going to be, I want to make sure I get in nature and move my body with my family. Put something into that schedule that is not going to change that you’re adding. And I want you to also subtract something that’s draining you and maybe a toxic friend that whenever you leave, you feel like trash. It may be that you’re so sick of mowing your lawn and maybe that, you know, by the time this airs, maybe leaves are starting to fall in Michigan. I swear snow comes in September. Winter is coming. You know, and so it could be, you know, this year I’m going to pay the neighbor kid to rake my yard. Finding something that is stressful, that doesn’t set you up for Monday. If Monday is your first day, whatever your first day is, that sets you up that you can remove from it, that you say, Oh my gosh, it feels amazing to not more my lawn this weekend. This is awesome. Remove something and add something. When you take those really small steps, you’re going to start to see that even that really small step is going to make you feel so much different as you enter the work week and you’re going to start trying more and more, you’re going to do more experiments. Next thing you know Thursday is going to be your new Friday.
Linzy [00:30:56] So Joe, if people want to find you online, where’s the best place for them to find you?
Joe [00:31:02] Yeah. So the book’s available everywhere. So whether it’s Amazon or your local bookstore, you can get the book there. The website is JoeSanok.com for everything book and keynote related, and then for all of my private practice work that’s over at PracticeofthePractice.com. I also have a podcast called Practice Of The Practice. We have six hundred and fifty episodes all about private practice now with lots of big names and lots of just average people telling really good stories about their practices.
Linzy [00:31:28] Great. Wonderful. Thank you so much, Joe.
Joe [00:31:30] Thanks so much for having me.
Linzy [00:31:47] I so enjoyed this conversation with Joe and something that really stuck out to me about even the experience of talking to Joe – it’s no wonder that he has this massive impact with his Practice Of The Practice business – is he’s so energizing and inspiring something that I see so many therapists in private practice do, and especially those of us that struggle with money is struggling to take up space and thinking that what we do is valuable and that we have big contributions to make. And what I know is, with so many of my students is although they won’t be making these bigger impacts and they have a passion, whether it’s for perinatal therapy or complex trauma, we’re so stuck in this. First of all, this like, butt-in-seats models, is what they would call it, of just individual sessions and seeing so many clients every week that we’re really limiting our ability to be creative and start to dig into those bigger and more exciting projects that would help us help more people and help more people get our message. So I so appreciate Joe giving us a bit more of a map of how to get there. So if you’re a therapist who has that ambition and wants to do those bigger things and who just wants to enjoy their life more and make a project out of enjoying your life, not just being successful in business, I think Joe’s book has a lot to offer. All the links that Joe mentioned are in the show notes, so you can check them out there. Check out his book Thursday Is The New Friday and his website Practice of the Practice for his own podcasts. He has multiple podcasts on there that you can check out. And to hear more from me and Money Nuts & Bolts, you can follow us on Instagram. We’re putting out great free money content all the time. And if you’re feeling inspired to take those next steps to really get your private practice finances working for you so that you can start to do some of these things that Joe talked about and and really get your impact going because you have the money working in your practice to sustain you and take care of you and mean you don’t have to see a bunch of clients, I really encourage you to check out my masterclass, “The Four-Step Framework to Getting Your Business Finances Totally in Order”. It’s going to lay out my approach that’s helped hundreds of therapists really get money working for them so that their business and their life suit who they are. So you can check out the link in the show notes to register for the masterclass and watch at a time that works for you. Thanks for joining me today.
Are you interested in being more productive during your work time and in having more free time in your weekly schedule? In this Money Skills for Therapists episode, Linzy talks with Joe Sanok, author of several books including his newest release that just came out this month, Thursday is the New Friday: How to Work Fewer Hours, Make More Money, and Spend Time Doing What You Want.
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