I am going to share some stuff that has worked for me in the
past and, if you try them, they might work for you too.
These are a few productivity concepts that have literally
changed my work life and every single time I mess them up or
forget to implement them, catastrophic consequences occur
like two-hour Youtube sessions, useless Skype chats about
squirrels or a two-hour lunch break to avoid writing
Now, before I lay it out here, it’s important to understand
why these work. So many people are going to tell you that
all you need to do to succeed is to be more motivated, work
longer or want it badly enough. And while I think these are
an underlying factor, the real importance when it comes to
getting things done effectively is to rely on a system. A
system that works for you in particular (we’re all
different, let’s face it) and one that you can turn into a
Systems can be relied on, discipline cannot.
Therefore it makes sense to create a system for ourselves
that maximizes the body and brain’s natural ability to be
productive instead of fighting with itself and wasting time.
Have you ever had one of those days where no matter what you
did, you simply could not get the day’s work done? Everyone
has. How about a day where you get more done than the whole
rest of the week combined? Yip, me too. Why does this happen
exactly? What are the factors that make a day rock or suck?
Well for me it’s really simple:
1. Plan your day the night before.
Write down the 3 most productive, income-producing actions
you need to complete the next day. I use a .txt file on my
desktop for this.
2. Get these 3 done before lunch time.
Switch off your email, MSN, Skype, phone, blackberry, lock
the door, ignore everything and hunker down.
3. Check email last.
Checking your email first thing in the morning effectively
scrambles your brain for the rest of the day making it
unable to focus, so make sure you do it last.
These might seem a little simplistic but they are
unbelievably powerful because they take advantage of two of
the most powerful, naturally-occurring brain phenomena for
concentration and focus. The first is your subconscious. If
you plan your 3 tasks the night before, your subconscious
has the whole night to mentally prepare your brain for
action so when you do get down to it, there is zero
friction. Try it.
The other is a chemical known as cortisol. This is a hormone
in the brain that is very prevalent in the morning and
decreases throughout the day. It is one of the main reasons
why people don’t get much done in the afternoons. It helps
with focus, energy and sharpness.
While other things do have an effect on me too like the
amount of sleep I get, whether I exercised the day before or
the craziness in my personal life, these pale in comparison
to the above tactics.
Keep in mind that after implementing these strategies,
things are not going to change overnight. This is a huge
productivity myth. However, over time of making it a
consistent habit, you will definitely start having more
productive days than unproductive ones, and this then
becomes a self-perpetuating cycle that makes it easier to
keep up. Slow, steady improvement is what you want to aim
for, not immediate, stellar productivity.
Try them out, they just might improve your life forever.
And if you’re worried about some of the “less important”
things getting done in your business, you may want to
consider outsourcing those tasks so you can focus on the
important stuff. To get a complete guide on exactly how and
where to hire freelancers for your business take a look at