As a physician, you’re probably already familiar with the concept of working “smarter” and not “harder”. You’re also well aware that the idea isn’t that far-fetched.
In short, the concept argues that when you learn to leverage the resources you already have –– your knowledge, your time, and your money –– you’re far more likely to increase your wealth, without getting lost in the process.
But what does working “smarter” look like?
In short, I’m talking about:
Excellent time management, and
Utilizing tools that will help you reach your goals in less time – and with less effort.
Let’s take a closer look and understand how you can apply this concept to your life, today.
3 ways to minimize your efforts and increase your wealth
1. Earn passive income and build wealth through real estate investment
One of the best ways to work smarter in order to increase your wealth is through real estate investment. As a physician - someone in one of the highest-paying occupations - you more than likely already have the cash flow and the creditworthiness to speed up the process and make it a lot easier for everyone involved.
When it comes to real estate investing for beginners, it’s important that you do your research, as well as work with a professional who can teach you the ropes of real estate investment and everything that goes into buying a property. Once you’re clear on the process and your budget, the real magic can begin.
One of the best investments for doctors –– outside of buying into an established medical practice –– is purchasing low-risk, high-growth real estate property. Less volatile and less risky than the stock market, real estate is one of the most secure ways to invest your money and reap the rewards.
Some of the most important things to keep in mind when looking for the best places to invest in real estate are:
The type of property you’re investing in –– from commercial real estate to residential real estate and land real estate
The location of the property and neighboring properties, too
The risks of investing in that specific real estate, such as potential costs and expenses
Your cash flow and the budget you've allocated to deal with situations that might arise
There are a lot of different ways that doctors can earn passive income through real estate investment. The decision is ultimately yours, from purchasing a vacation home to investing in a rental property.
By relying on your job for income you’re exchanging sweat for money, which ultimately requires time, effort, knowledge, energy, and the stressors of a medical career.
However, I can confidently say that the best way to ensure a steady, recurring income and build equity over the years is by investing in your own rental property –– because the benefits of owning a rental property speak for themselves.
Some of the benefits that come with owning a rental property of your own include:
A steady source of passive income
A diverse asset portfolio
Being in control of your investment
Property value appreciation
Flexibility to sell your property
Tax write-offs (interest, repairs, depreciation, insurance, etc.)
Overall, buying property and investing in real estate doesn’t just allow you to create an additional income stream and build a hefty investment portfolio – it might also help you save on taxes in the long run.
2. Leverage other people’s money
When it comes to investing, one of the most lucrative options isn’t to leverage your own money but to leverage someone else’s.
Leveraging assets like property doesn’t necessarily require you to do much or exchange your time for great returns: you just need to invest the money. Let’s say you buy two condos for $200k each using a loan from the bank. You could lease both places to tenants, letting them indirectly pay your loan and perhaps make a small profit while the price of the underlying assets also increases over time.
Outsourcing the tasks that take you more time than needed is a great place to start leveraging your resources and making the most of your time and efforts.
Compare this with simply relying on your job to increase your wealth. Sure, it’s effective –– but remember: you’re exchanging sweat for money, which ultimately requires time, effort, knowledge, energy, and the stressors of a medical career.
And since working doesn’t allow you to do much else since you can’t be in two places at once, where does that leave working “smarter”?
3. Make the most of your existing resources
One of the most important aspects of working smarter is learning how to successfully leverage the resources you have available. Whether these resources are material or not, it’s important to understand that you probably already possess everything you need to increase your productivity and cut down your efforts in half.
Outside of real estate investment, one clear example of this is day-to-day delegation.
Outsourcing the tasks that take you more time than needed is a great place to start leveraging your resources and making the most of your time and efforts. You don’t need to take everything on –– and it’s a lot smarter to delegate certain tasks to other team members than to try to tackle them on your own.
If you know someone is more skilled than you at something, ask for a helping hand and let them take the load off. Studies have shown that leaders who delegate certain tasks avoid burnout and can even increase revenue by 33%.
Plus, when you learn how to make the most of your circle’s strengths, you’re also helping them develop their own set of tools to move forward in their lives and careers.
Focus on the “return on hassle”
Sure, owning an urgent care clinic, restaurant, car wash, or cookie shop might sound like an exciting business venture –– but all of these usually require you to get involved in the labor, management, and other aspects of the day-to-day to keep them up and running successfully.
This is especially true for physicians who –– as you probably know –– tend to get over-invested and would often prefer to take on the additional responsibility than hand it over to someone else.
Meanwhile, real estate investment works differently. Although not entirely self-sufficient, it is a lot easier for the investment to run on its own and doesn’t require a daily commitment to thrive.
While the management side of the property might not be the best use of your time, you can always find someone else to take care of the nitty gritty for you –– and leverage their knowledge, time, and efforts to the best of your advantage.
“Smarter vs. harder”: which works best for you?
While there’s no right or wrong answer to that question, working “smarter” likely seems like the more attractive option.
When you work smarter, you have more time to do the things that you enjoy and enjoy the things that you do.
When it comes to working smarter, three of my top tips include
Building wealth through real estate investment
Choosing secure investment opportunities
Leveraging your existing resources
As you strive to make the most of your efforts and your time, you’ll soon realize that it doesn’t take working more, working harder, or giving up your freedom to build wealth –– all it takes is streamlining processes and using what you already have at your disposal, to ensure maximum growth and profit.
David Price MD is the Founder and CEO of getFREED, a business providing real estate education and vetting of individual deals to help physicians and other healthcare professionals build a passive stream of income, allowing them to work less and practice on their terms.
David lives with his wife and two daughters in Atlanta, GA, USA.
To find out more about David and getFREED, head to http://www.get-freed.com.