THE HIGHEST AND BEST USE OF YOUR TIME, aka “Shoveling Shit, Part One”

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The Highest and Best Use of Your Time

Today, I'm sharing a picture of me *literally* shoveling shit. 

Why am I sharing this, and what does it have to do with business?

Nicole Wipp mucking the horse's pasture
Nicole working in the horses pasture


Like so many of you, I consider myself a hard worker. And, at this point in my career, I'm a leader. I should be past the point of doing the equivalent of shoveling shit in my business, right?

Yet think about it, entrepreneurs and business leaders: so many of you still are.

Let's be clear. If something needs to be done, and I’m the only one around to do it, then I will do it.  I’m not “too good” to do any job, whether it be mucking the horse's paddock, or cleaning the toilets in my office. If it needs to be done, I am willing, and I'm certainly capable.


That being said, the real question for entrepreneurs and business leaders is, SHOULD I be doing this thing? MUST I do it because there is literally no one else on the planet that can?

The same is true in my business.  

There are many things I CAN do.

In fact, there is very little in my business that I cannot do. I am, after all, the expert in my subject areas, so "the work" is certainly within my grasp. But I can also run a copy machine and I can talk to clients on the phone. I can balance the books and I can run lead campaigns and I can do payroll and I can draft documents and I can create spreadsheets and I can create social media posts and I can write blogs and I can set the meetings up and I can pay the bills…..need I go on (and on)?

There’s no question that while I can and am willing to do what must be done, whatever it is, this is, on most days, not the highest and best use of my time.

But what *MUST* I (or you) do? Well, in the world of the 9 Freedom Catalysts, you ONLY do the work that ONLY you can do, and even then, it is the work that GIVES you energy instead of depleting it. Your team does the rest.

Now think about this.  

How many tasks in your business are truly ones that ONLY YOU can do? The kinds of tasks that you do that bring the magic and the energy of the business to life. Not the “get it done” stuff, but the thinking, the creativity, the drive, the push

Usually, the answer is very few. In fact, for most entrepreneurs and business leaders, it is 5 things OR LESS.

The next question is, do these tasks give you energy or deplete it? If the answer is that you become depleted, then it is clear: you should NOT be doing it.

Of course, this is easier said than done. But it is one of the biggest cornerstones of entrepreneurial freedom, the idea of retirement RIGHT NOW... the idea that we have the creative energy to give back to the world through our expertise gained over many years of hard work, and we do it so that we can move forward and bring the gifts we have to the people that need them. 


All of what I said here is deeply rooted in the work I do with clients to uplevel themselves, their businesses, their teams, and their work. Specifically, this has to do with Freedom Catalyst 2: Innate Value, and Freedom Catalyst 7: Deliverance Team. 

You can learn more about where you stand, by evaluating yourself via The 9 Freedom Catalysts Scorecard.