How I do more in 2 days than most people in 2 weeks
There is one thing I do better than most people.
I’m no smarter than most people. I am no more gifted. I don’t have an Ivy League education. I am not very lucky.
Instead, I work. It’s my secret skill.
But it’s no real secret. I’ve taken the time to research productivity tips and use some of the more advanced techniques to help me get more done in less time.
A lot of the productivity stuff you read is basic: delegating, batch processing, keeping a to-do list, etc. These are great ideas, and you should implement them!
But to really get a job, you need more than just the basics. You need killer hacks that will let you kill your goals and dominate in life and business.
I looked at my productivity habits under a microscope, studied the data and researched. Here is what I discovered about my ability to work harder than most people, and how you can do the same.
1. I figured out exactly where I was wasting time.
I was wasting a lot of time without even realizing it! I used to waste time surfing the web. I turned into a productivity freak, because of just one little plugin.
I used an app called Rescue time (there are others available too), which followed where I spent most of my time online. The app even showed me a productivity score every day.
I found out that I was spending hours every week on unnecessary stuff like YouTube and Facebook. I installed another application to prevent me from visiting these sites that were wasting my time.
Instantly, my productivity skyrocketed. Before using these two apps, I spent 4.8 hours a week surfing the web unnecessarily.
Apparently other people have this problem as well. A third of workers waste Three hours per day on things like social media. This means they lose eighteen weeks of work every year!
After tracking my time and blocking time-wasting sites, I was making up the 4.8 hours wasted each week. This translates to 250 Following working hours each year, or extra six weeks of work!
2. I sleep a lot.
Weird, isn’t it? I sleep more, but I work harder. How? ‘Or’ What?
It’s not “advanced”, but it’s a huge productivity booster.
Sleeping a lot – 9.25 hours per night – makes me Following productive. When I don’t get enough sleep, it takes me four hours to go through 400 emails (my average daily email response rate). When I sleep more than 9 hours, I can complete my email in 2.5 hours!
Harvard researchers have discovered that American companies lose $ 63.2 billion per year, due to lack of sleep. It is a huge waste!
Get more sleep and you’ll be more productive.
3. If I start it, I finish it.
I believe very much in starting what you end.
A lot of people start a project, stop and try to come back to it later. It’s a huge waste of time. It takes several minutes for your brain to get back into the rhythm of what you started working on. Besides, what if you never finish it?
This often happens with email. You open an email, read it, don’t reply, and close it. You just lost an average of four minutes. Faded away!
When you start checking your emails again, you will read the same email again, figure out what to do and write a response.
If you start something, no matter how small, End it!
4. I divide my tasks into small pieces.
Let me be honest with you. Big projects scare me. If I was like, “Hey, Neil, start a business! I would be paralyzed and I wouldn’t even start.
So how come I managed to start several multi-million dollar businesses?
Easy. With bite-sized pieces. Have you ever heard this phrase? “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.
I would never suggest eating an elephant, but would suggest breaking up your chores into smaller pieces in order to get them done.
I never put a task in my to-do list that takes more than an hour. It’s too intimidating! Instead, I break each big project down into twenty minute tasks! I don’t mind spending twenty minutes on something.
When I complete a twenty minute task I feel super productive and want to do even Following.
Short-term gains, like eliminating a 20-minute task, help produce long-term gains! Check a task gives you a shot of dopamine, chemical well-being in your body. This little gain makes you want to start over and over again.
Before you know it, you’ve turned yourself into a task-killing productivity machine.
5. I work from bed.
Working in bed won’t work for everyone, but it works for me.
As I always travel, I stay in hotels a lot. I don’t use business centers or hotel lounges, so I work from my room. Sometimes my room might not have a desk (or really uncomfortable chairs), so I work from my bed.
It’s comfortable, I can relax and do a ton of things. When you are in bed, you feel safe from interruptions and people are less likely to bother you.
6. I work anywhere.
There is nowhere where I can not job.
I did all of the following:
- Shower? Reflection.
- Toilet? Writing articles.
- Bed? Anything.
- Wash my face? Conference call.
- Breakfast? Team meeting call.
- Flight? E-mail.
- Uber? E-mail.
- Walk to lunch? Business call.
- Breakfast? Business meeting.
- To exercise ? E-mail.
Working anywhere allows me to take every free minute of the day and use it for something productive.
Then when I want to stop and not work, I give it full permission.
7. I am a minimalist.
Productivity isn’t all about hacks, batch processing, time-saving tips, and apps. Living productively requires lifestyle changes.
I designed my life to be incredibly simple. Everything in my life helps me achieve my goal and goals. For this reason I stripped all it does not help me for that purpose.
I do not own a house or a vehicle. I hardly have any tips. Everything I own fits easily in a briefcase and carry-on.
Owning fewer things unleashes insane levels of mental focus. Plus, I don’t have to worry about all the tedious activities of owning a lot of things, a house or a car.
8. I subcontract everything.
I’m only good at a few things, so I choose to do alone these tasks.
What about everything else in life? Other people are good at doing these things, so I pay them to do it. I have teams of super dedicated, hardworking, smart people who can work and get things done.
As I mentioned, I live outside of hotels 46 weeks a year. (I couchsurf at my parents’ house a few times a year.) I stay in hotels that have room service, so I don’t have to worry about finding and cooking my own food. These hotels also have a laundry service, so I don’t spend time finding laundry facilities and washing my own clothes.
As far as my companies are concerned, I only contribute 0.08% of the total working time of the teams. The things I choose to do are valuable tasks that I am good at.
9. I plan large periods of time for personal development.
Stephen Covey has developed a time management matrix that looks like this:
Most people spend their time on quadrants, 1, 3, and 4. Some things are important, but most tasks are wasted time in disguise.
Why don’t we spend time on quadrant 2? The things in this quadrant are some of the most important things we could spend our time on, but we usually overlook them.
I believe that if we passed Following time on self-improvement, self-discovery, personal development, long-term planning and strategy, we will become more productive.
Every day, I schedule these tasks right in my calendar. For at least sixty minutes each day, I spend time meditating, strategizing, journaling, and setting goals.
As soon as I started doing this, my productivity exploded. When I was working on my other tasks, I knew I had a big commitment to make, so I worked harder, faster, and smarter to free up time.
The result was that I developed higher levels of productivity and was able to focus on personal development.
10. I work with my ultradian rhythms.
One of the most advanced productivity techniques I have learned is Energy management.
Your energy level goes up and down throughout the day. You should be doing more mentally demanding tasks, such as writing or strategizing, during the time of day when you have the most energy. At your low power points, you can perform less demanding tasks like sending emails or scheduling.
Discover your best time of day to work forces you to a higher level of productivity without requiring more time or energy.
One of the most important things I’ve learned about productivity is this: It’s not about how many things you do. It’s about choosing what’s important and focusing on it.
Productivity is more about getting the law things are done rather than just doing things. If you can figure out your big life goals, then you will be able to sort out the little things like your daily schedule, your daily goals, and how best to organize your day.
Being productive is not an end in itself. It is a means to an end. Knowing what you want out of life and then pursuing it is where real productivity really begins.