The Flow of Time and Money by Lloyd Watts, PhD


Lloyd Watts was born in London, England, on October 2, 1961. He earned a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering in 1992 at the California Institute of Technology, studying with Silicon Valley pioneer Carver Mead. In 2000, he founded Audience, Inc., a venture-capital funded startup that builds advanced noise reduction chips for cell-phones. Dr. Watts is the author of 5 patents and many technical papers. He is an accomplished photographer, painter, musician, former hang glider pilot, and proud father of two lovely daughters. He lives in Mountain View, California, in the heart of Silicon Valley.

You can visit Lloyd online at


The Flow of Time and Money is a groundbreaking new book that will help you master the relationship between your time and money. Using simple, proven techniques and easy-to-understand diagrams, Dr. Lloyd Watts shows you how to take control of your income, expenses and time commitments in order to achieve wealth and personal fulfillment.

Lloyd agreed to an interview. Here's what he had to say:

Could you please tell us a little about your book?

My latest book is The Flow of Time and Money: How to create a full and prosperous life. It takes two subjects (time management and financial success) and shows that they are two sides of the same thing, have the same structure, and are connected in two surprising ways.

1. The first way is that Time and Money have the same basic flow structure. They flow IN in the same way (you get your weekly job income, and you get your 168 hours each week of time). They flow OUT in the same way (we have some necessary expenses of money, like food, shelter, and clothing, and we have necessary expenses of time, like sleeping, eating, bathing). And there are ways of productively investing both time and money that lead to fulfillment and prosperity (investing money into assets that produce Capital Gains and Passive Income, and investing time in your relationships, education, and health). The flow patterns are the same, and when we truly see the big picture of how we are spending our precious Time and Money, we start managing our lives better to cut out the harmful and wasteful things, and to make the good stuff happen.

2. The second connection between Time and Money is that we have ways of turning one into the other. The simplest way to turn Time into Money is to work at a job. Your Employer turns your time (8 hours/day) into your Job Income, at a rate determined by your professional education and relationships. Your Time and your Money are directly connected by your Employer. That is the usual way that the vast majority of people live their lives. The Flow of Time and Money shows you how to eliminate the Employer from your life: by investing in your Life Assets and Material Assets, to produce Passive Income and Capital Gains, so you can live on those sources of income, rather than Job Income, so you can have more Time to enjoy your life and contribute to making the world a better place.

When we understand the "rules" of Time and Money, we can see how to build a strategy for how to win the game – to become financially independent. The Flow of Time and Money describes the four stages on the Path to Financial Independence – Youth/Education, Accumulating Capital, Small Deals and Big Deals. Each of these stages has things that need to be learned to prepare you for the next stage. And each has traps that can prevent you from moving to the next stage. The first big trap is the Save and Spend Trap, which we dutifully teach to our children with the "piggy-bank and allowance" method of financial education. The second big trap is the Borrow and Spend Trap – many people are tempted into this trap by peer pressure and the desire for social status, to look wealthier than they really are.

All told, the book describes how to build a complete life, with the money to enjoy the good things that life has to offer, and the time to enjoy our loved ones and make a contribution to the world.

Did something specific happen to prompt you to write this book?

I’ve been writing since 1999, when I first put together the flow diagrams and seminar on which The Flow of Time and Money is based, and then committed the seminar content to an early version of the book.

When I wrote the first version of The Flow of Time and Money in 1999, I was preparing to start my first technology company (Audience) based on work I had been doing for about a decade. I was 38 years old and felt like I had been preparing all my adult life to start this company. But at the same time, my seminar on The Flow of Time and Money was being enthusiastically received, and I felt the urge to commit it to writing and publish it in an early form. I knew it was too early for me to ask for wide attention on the subject of financial success, because I had not succeeded yet – I was just preparing to start my first company. But somehow I sensed that Audience would be successful, and I felt the urge to "call my shot" – to write how I felt Time and Money worked, from the point of view of a young man about to do something that he hoped would be great. There are many books written by successful people, after the fact, and I have always felt that they suffer from a kind of revisionist history. I wanted to make available my thoughts and thought processes on these important subjects, from the point of view of a person who was about to climb the mountain. I knew that if I reached the top, I would be glad to have a written record of what I took with me, and that other would-be climbers might be glad to read it too.

Is there an author that inspired you to write?

My mother had an extensive library of self-help books. I remember a day when I was about 14 years old that changed my life. I was looking through her large library at books whose titles did not capture my interest. But then I saw a book by Raymond Hull, entitled How to Get What You Want. I remember thinking, "OK, if that doesn’t grab you, what will?" I pulled it off the bookshelf and couldn’t put it down. A recipe, a sensible method, for how to get anything I wanted! I could hardly believe that someone had written something so simple, so powerful. I felt like I had discovered Alladin’s lamp. I followed it to the letter, and found that it did indeed work as advertised. It is one of the references in The Flow of Time and Money, the first of many books which deeply influenced me.

The other two books that inspired me to write The Flow of Time and Money are The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey (largely about time management and relationships), and Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki (largely about money). Both of these books taught me some important things, and yet both left me with a feeling that there was more to be said, and that the two disciplines of time management and money management could be unified.

What do you feel sets this book apart from others in the same genre?

The Flow of Time and Money is unique in its clarity, brevity, completeness and importance. The clarity and brevity come from the use of simple diagrams and analogies to explain the perennially difficult subjects of time and money management. The completeness comes from taking a whole-life view, that includes the financial aspects of a life, and the time management aspects of a life. Most books treat those subjects separately. The Flow of Time and Money is the only book I know of that handles both subjects in a unified way. Finally, I do believe that this is an important contribution. Many people are unfulfilled and have serious financial problems. The Flow of Time and Money aims directly at those important problems with simple, clear solutions that anyone can follow and improve their lives dramatically.

Are you a different person now than you were 5 years ago? In what way/s?

Yes, I am a very different person now than I was 5 years ago. In 2004, I was the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Audience, and I had just raised Audience’s first venture capital financing of $5M. Audience had raised money, was growing its team, but had not yet defined a product. The Flow of Time and Money had been released in preliminary form in 2000 but was essentially dormant. In 2009, I have gracefully transitioned to Chief Technology Officer (CTO), Audience has raised $60M in venture financing, we have defined a product and it is selling well into top-tier international cell-phone companies. I have learned a lot as Audience has grown and matured, and I have validated many of the ideals that I held to be important before starting Audience. The Flow of Time and Money has received spontaneous and unexpected support from a large group of people, and it seems to be making a difference in the people’s lives. These successes are giving me confidence that I did not yet have in 2004, and making me bolder about trying to make a contribution to the world in my own unique way. And the act of voluntarily transitioning from CEO to CTO at Audience has given me a sense of freedom and peace of mind that I did not have previously.

What is the most important lesson you have learned from life so far?


Is there anything else you would like to share with us?

Thank you so much for the opportunity to reach out to your readers, and thanks to your readers for taking the time to read this interview. I hope you enjoy The Flow of Time and Money, and it helps to bring you wealth and fulfillment in your own life.

The Flow of Time and Money is available on, and will be available shortly in bookstores.
Lloyd Watts

THE FLOW OF TIME AND MONEY VIRTUAL BLOG TOUR '09 will officially begin on April 1 and end on April 30. You can visit Lloyd's blog stops at in April to find out more about this talented author!As a special promotion for all our authors, Pump Up Your Book Promotion is giving away a FREE virtual book tour to a published author or a $50 Amazon gift certificate to those not published who comments on our authors' blog stops. More prizes will be announced as they become available.

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