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People always seem to be short of time or money—sometimes both. Efficiency is a way to get more of both. It's not a compromise; it's an optimization where everything is better. It's a way to live lighter on the planet, and to live better. It's quality versus quantity.
Efficiency rewards you similarly to the way a financial investment grows. Just as compound interest allows your money to grow over time, efficiency's benefits continue to accumulate. Efficiency has a better return with a higher guarantee than any financial investment. Like planting a tree, the best time to start being efficient was twenty years ago; the second-best time is now.
Embracing efficiency is not difficult. It is often just a matter of replacing old, bad habits with new, better habits. To develop a new, good habit you'll have to actively work at it for a month, but then it becomes a new good habit. Develop some new good habits and you, too, will know the Joy of Efficiency.
This book has three major sections. If you are interested in organizing your life so you have more time and money, then the first third of the book is for you. It's a bit of a self-help book. If you are interested in building or buying a better house, then the middle third is for you. This section is for those who want to live better for less—and with a much lighter impact on the planet. If you work in a corporation and want to improve your buildings, systems, or your work processes, then the final third is for you. This is the business process and systems section, and it's applicable to many areas of a business or company. Throughout the book, the effective path to efficiency is explained through true stories and examples. We learn best through stories instead of just formulas and data.
This book may seem to ramble across topics, but read enough and you'll find the thread connecting them all. The power of efficiency—and the joy of living an efficient life—lies in those connections.