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Drive by Daniel Pink

Daniel Pink tells us that most of what we think about motivation is wrong.

Researchers show that the carrot and stick method so often used in the corporate setting is not motivating your staff like you think it is. Maybe that’s what is reflected in the Gallup study with 70% of the workforce disengaged. We are trying to engage them in the wrong way.

 

Drive by Daniel Pink

Courtesy: Nathalie Magniez/Flickr

 

There are instances he points out where the carrot and stick method of extrinsic motivators, such as money, works effectively. These situations are when the tasks are mundane and it is just the execution of a simple step by step process. These situations require little creativity and therefore see success with external motivators.

In his book, Daniel Pink points out that financial rewards can create bad behavior: reaching the goal at all costs, causing shortcuts and unethical short-term thinking and behavior. Other challenges are that the financial reward becomes expected and addictive.

When you want to access the creativity, conceptual thinking and problem solving of people and activate their level of engagement, the best motivators are the internal motivators.

Daniel Pink challenges the goal setting process of an organization that provides fixed goals for people. He says they are not always in alignment with our deep-seated desire to direct our own lives, to extend and expand our abilities, and to live a life of purpose. Daniel Pink points these three areas as the drivers of human motivation:

Autonomy—the desire to direct our own lives

Mastery—to advance our skills and knowledge in something that matters to us

Purpose—The need to serve others

Here are some interesting statements around each area:

Autonomy

‘If-then’ rewards require people to forfeit some of their autonomy. Goals set by others diminish autonomy and intrinsic motivation. The less say people have, the less autonomy they feel. It can often create a sense of apathy around the goals themselves.

Mastery

Rewards, by their very nature, narrow our focus. Rewards take away the desire to master the topic, do their best or rise to the occasion. Rewards create competition and put limitations on people’s effort and motivation to succeed.

Purpose:

Interestingly enough, in a study done around blood donors, when financial incentives were provided people were less interested to serve others as it wasn’t genuine. Instead of increasing the number of blood donors, offering to pay people decreased the number by nearly half.

This goes against what most people think but studies have proven this to be true. Extrinsic motivators are not the best way to engage people and bring out their best.

The premise of the book is to take employees from compliance to engagement. It’s important to understand what intrinsically motivated people and how to connect them to these intrinsic motivators.

When leaders try to use control, it may create some compliance but removes the engagement, accountability, and creativity that comes from employees owning their work. People need to be seen as partners not resources.

In the traditional workforce motivation model, companies use reward and punishment. These external factors also usually come at the end of the process. Accountability and ownership need to be fostered at the beginning of the process.

Read the book and stop using financial rewards and start sparking intrinsic motivators. Share some ways you engage your staff to spark the three intrinsic motivators.

Image Source: Flickr

10 Must Read Books On Leadership

There are dozens and dozens of books cited by CEOs, corporate managers, and employees on what gets them motivated to lead the day. It can come in a novel, a self-help book, or a non-fiction story that may not even be business related, yet be adaptable to the businesses. Here is a short list of books about leadership that should be read by all.

Books On Leadership

  1. The Art Of War by Sun Tzu – This book, written in China, is 2000 years old. Why do we still read it? It may be about the military and approach war in Asia, but it can be easily applied to business strategy, strategies, and achievements. It will help you find solutions to disruptions in different areas of your life.
  2. The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership by John C. Maxwell – The business veteran gives real stories and practical application around the 21 laws of success and failures as a business leader. Mixing in scenes of politics, sports, religion, and war, Maxwell gives his own constitution to leadership. It is a must-read for all leaders.
  3. Start With Why by Simon Sinek – Business is not just about the products and services. They are about the purpose and connections those products create. Great brands understand this concept and lead from the heart rather than the head. Start with why and you will touch the hearts of employees and clients alike and create a strong community that supports and promotes the business.
  4. Drive by Daniel H. Pink – What you thought you knew about motivation will be challenged in this book. Daniel Pink brings us into the world of psychology where autonomy, mastery, and purpose are the real drivers to drive managers and employees to reach beyond their goals. If you want to be a better leader, you need to know what motivates others and what your role as a leader is in getting people motivated.
  5. First, Break All The Rules by Marcus Buckingham &Curt Coffman – This book is a major influence on management philosophy. The two authors, both of them Gallup analysts, write that the leading factors to a successful organization involve zeroing in on strengths and giving each employee the right feel to fit in perfectly. Stories and examples come from a study of over 80,000 managers and what they do differently.
  6. Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Steven R. Covey – This is a classic has been inspiring people for over 25 years. Shift your thinking around leadership, time management, and productivity. It is to be practiced in everyday life. Read this book one a year and condition these habits. Attaining success is about building character and the habits you practice will define you.
  7. Built To Last by James C. Collins & Jerry I. Porras – The authors did 6 years of research asking the question “What makes the truly exceptional companies different from other companies?” The result was a list of companies they defined as visionaries (Disney, Ford, Sony). They write those companies’ characteristics that led to massive success, sustainability, and leadership in each business sector.
  8. Extreme Ownership by Jocko Willink& Leif Babin – Using the lives of two Navy SEALs and their challenges through a mission gone wrong. The book details how they dug out of a hole and lead the way to survive and advance. It is all about leading in times of trouble at any given minute – which is what business leadership is about: taking a hold of a major problem and guiding them out of trouble.
  9. Team of Rivals by Doris Kearns Goodwin – This might not be a common choice on your leadership reading list but a great way to learn about great leadership is to study great leaders. Lincoln was a strong leader and this book dives into the start of President Lincoln’s presidency and how he brought in his critics within the Republican Party into his cabinet. Lincoln is widely considered the greatest President in American history and this book provides insight how he became a full-fledged leader in the darkest years of the country at all costs.
  10. The New One Minute Manager by Spencer Johnson and Kenneth H. Blanchard – This is an updated version of the classic “One Minute Manager”. The classic book focused on the principle of mentoring and coaching to be a good manager and teach others to manage. This updated parable demonstrates the same principles in today’s business environment. Focusing on the right motivators and providing direct feedback creates strong teams.

These are all books that strike at the source of what it means to be a leader. They come from different perspectives and give readers an unlikely view of what the world – or business – can be. These books are great for business book clubs, management training programs, executive training, leadership training and any venue designed to develop leaders personally and professionally.

What’s so great about Tim Ferris?

The first time I read Tim Ferris’ 4 hour work week, I was put off. Flying off here and there, it wasn’t a sustainable lifestyle at least not for me. I like the unconventional thinking that drew me to the book but there felt like an underlying arrogance when reading the book. For example, I didn’t think that winning the world championship for Chinese kick-boxing on the skill of the rules and other hacks versus the skill of the sport made you a champion. But it does as that is part of the skill. Maybe my initial interpretation of arrogance at the time was jealousy for freedom he created and the sense of accomplishment he was seeking that I didn’t think I could have. Maybe.

There is even controversy if some of the claims he made in the book were true as there is no evidence. I am not writing this to be a nay-sayer, I want to focus on what was good in his books.

After being in business for myself now for many years and coaching people all over the world how to grow their businesses through various strategies- his strategy worked. It is the result that matters (as long as there is no lying, cheating or stealing involved).

During my initial reading years ago, as a mother of 2 babies at the time, taking risks and being mobile wasn’t an option. That’s how I defined it. I am shedding some of those limiting beliefs to open up new opportunities.

Now I realize that this book is really about getting people to think differently. Get out of your old paradigm. If you do what you have always done, you will get what you have always gotten. BUT you want more so you have to think differently.

Tim’s books are worth reading! Here is a short overview of his book summaries:

4 Hour Work Week:
Tim Ferris writes about his escape from the 9-5 word and his entry into the New Rich. His book shares his story, his thinking and some tools to help you join him living anywhere, and Join the New Rich.

In order to join the “New Rich” you have to think differently. You can no longer trade time for money, you need to create residual income streams, think like a business owner and investor, not an operator.

According to Tim Ferris there are 4 steps to living a liberated life. He isn’t necessarily talking about how to make millions, he is talking about how to create a lifestyle of freedom.

The four steps are in the acronym DEAL
D=Definition – Change the way you think and define yourself and your limitations
E=Elimination –Eliminate the unnecessary, redundant and unimportant
A=Automation – Set up your systems to work without you
L=Liberation – Create mobility, freedom, and contribution.

You are being measured on your results, not the time and effort. There are no rewards for busy. Be productive by being efficient and effective.

Download here for free

4 Hour Chef

This book was born out of the mindset that you can learn to be a pro in anything you choose and you don’t have to have had a formal education in order to be a pro. Many people talk them out of their dreams to learn something from a perfectionist bug in their head that they cant compete with the pro’s or they aren’t good enough.

I understand that I had the same feeling in the world of technology many years back.
I didn’t have a formal technology coding background but I loved technology and what it could do to make things more efficient and effective.

In my first accounting job, I found a way to create macros to automate the month end process and save myself days of time every month end.

Someone suggested I go out on my own and become a contractor. They said you can make so much more money with the hours you are working. I couldn’t do that. I didn’t have a formal IT background. Then I sat across from this contractor from England. He was making $200/hour and I was his boss on the project and better than he was. That was the defining moment, “If he could do it, I could do it”.

The 4-Hour Chef isn’t just about cooking, it’s about teaching you how to learn new skills quickly and easily. If you like to cook or just want to learn something new, have a read. It is always interesting how you break something down to learn it and have fun!

Download here for free

Tools of Titans
This book is a conglomeration of tools and tips that Tim Ferris gets from his podcast, The Tim Ferriss Show, interviewing over 200 guests. He asks specific questions to provide the listeners with the opportunity to mimic habits and behaviors exhibited by some of the most successful people in the world. Tony Robbins Says “Success leaves clues” so read/listen carefully to what makes these people successful to tap into your greatest potential.

Buy the book here:

Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers

Where can you find out more about Tim Ferris?

Five Reasons Why Your Company Should Start A Book Club

A book club in a big company can be a great way to engage, connect, and deepen trust within your team or across departments. Having a book club is a chance to create intelligent and purposeful interactions, create new partnerships, share opinions, and improve overall communication by everyone involved. The book may be a topic to challenge, to connect, or to engage the group and it may or may not be one of choice. A book club forces members to reflect and interact in a different way. Learning another person’s background and opinions and allow them to share their point of view, open to different perspectives, and to trust and care for co-workers in a new way. It gives each person to be expressive with no hierarchy or agenda.

Here are five reasons to why your company should start a book club.

1. Connect Co-Workers

You know the views and opinions of your best friends, but rarely do you get the opportunity to have more intimate and authentic discussions like this with your co-workers. Perhaps, those on different floors have only shared the elevator or passed in walking through a floor other than their own. Yet there are interactions across departments in various forms. Gaining valuable perspectives from the diverse team of people you work with will create a greater connection to those people, greater respect, increase the level of trust and create a higher level of sensitivity while working with one another. Co-workers that like one another, work more effectively and efficiently together.

According to Malcolm Gladwell’s book, Outliers: The Story of Success , people who live the longest result not from healthy living but from a sense of belonging. He studied a town in Roseto, Pa, a town entirely made up of citizens who came from the village of Roseto Valfortore in Italy. The study showed that the people had a feeling of trust and security among Rosetans because the people of the town always had someone they knew and who knew them to turn to for support. They concluded that the extraordinary health of this unique population could only be explained in terms of “extended family” and “community.”

Greater connection creates a strong community.

2. Create a sense of belonging

Book clubs are inclusive, allowing each member to participate and share their views. This creates a greater sense of belonging to the group. A sense of belonging is a basic need that builds confidence, trust, and connection.

In addition, Kelly McGonigal the author of “The Upside of Stress”, reveals a study that was done with college students. Freshman drop-out rates are above 50%. A study was done to show the impact on the drop-out rate as a result of making students feel a greater sense of belonging through support, connection, and engagement. The study group resulted in a reduction of that drop-out rate by more than 50%.

People who feel like they belong and they matter to the organization, are more engaged and take a higher level of ownership in their work and the results they are creating. They develop a “do what it takes attitude versus a “whatever” attitude. Bad stress goes down and good stress goes up to create a greater sense of contribution.

3. Create Inspiration
Fiction and non-fiction books on multiple themes, genres, and subjects can stir the thinking brain and grab a topic never thought of before.

People get stuck and sometimes all they need is a little inspiration or a shift in perspective to get them unstuck. An open discussion around a powerful book can be a huge inspiration to spark new ideas, outside of the box thinking, innovation, efficiencies, new approaches and more.

Inspiration often comes from getting outside of your current way of thinking and your environment and connecting thoughts from others, developments in other industries and stories about people that create new connections in our minds.

4. De-Stressing
Work can create stress and we need more ways to get rid of it. We can walk around and work out but getting into your heart and out of your head – can be a great way to relieve stress. Conversations around issues in the office can be therapeutic in this structured way like a therapy session. People can work together to find solutions to common issues using a strategy from one of the books that they read together and share perspectives on how these strategies can help reduce stress, improve efficiency and make the environment more fun.

The benefits of reducing stress at work will increase productivity, improve communication, elevate health, and improve relationships both inside and outside of the business environment.

5. Management Training
Make it mandatory to utilize what they have learned and apply it in their work. Get creative in getting all the above accomplished within this form of training. Instead of the usual course days that are often forgotten the day after the course. Engage the application of the principles they learn in the books over time in smaller chunks. Productivity will increase due to a focus on implementation, connection, and inspiration.

Billionaires can list multiple books to recommend that are fictional for influencing their decisions. Bill Gates cites Catcher In The Rye by J.D. Salinger. Jeff Bezos cites The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro. Just about every other major business innovator supports I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou and The Art of War by Sun Tzu. Books can open minds. Isn’t that why we tell children to read, to expand their thoughts and minds? Adults in major corporations should too.

10 Top Self Help Books for Your Personal Growth

Sеlf hеlр bооkѕ аrе оnе оf the mоѕt рорulаr genres оn the mаrkеt today. Everyone wоuld like a little hеlр now аnd аgаin with реrѕоnаl iѕѕuеѕ, hеаling traumas from thе раѕt оr just kеерing bаlаnсеd in tоdау’ѕ crazy world. There are so many top self help books, the best self help books enable you to open up your awareness of yourself and provide you with some ways to take action in implementing changes in your life as a result.

Self Help Books

Woman reading book in bed during the morning

Thiѕ liѕt is соmрriѕеd of thе 10 top self hеlр books available for you over a diverse range of topics, including stress, childhood trauma, family struggles, presence and overall achievement.

This book ореnѕ уоur minds to ѕее bеуоnd whаt уоu currently see. It sheds light оn whаt саuѕеѕ a tipping point; whаt mаkеѕ a fad, trеnd, оr a bооk сlimb to thе tор оf thе bеѕtѕеlling liѕt. Iѕ thеrе a tiррing point… a bоiling роint аt whiсh аmаzing thingѕ begin tо hарреn and spread likе wild firе? Gladwell has аn еxсеllеnt wау оf еxрlаining whу thе аnѕwеr to thiѕ ԛuеѕtiоn iѕ аn аѕtоunding Yеѕ.

Thiѕ muѕt-hаvе ѕеlf-hеlр book еxрlоrеѕ thе ѕtrеngth of introverts in a wоrld that vаluеѕ еxtrоvеrtѕ and human networking. It еnсоurаgеѕ thе wоrld tо hоnоr the ѕtrеngthѕ аnd values еvеrу реrѕоnаlitу type hаѕ tо оffеr. It illuѕtrаtеѕ the balance introverts and еxtrоvеrtѕ bring to thе wоrkfоrсе and the wоrld. More imроrtаntlу, it helps thе introverted reader build соurаgе аnd ассерt thе vаluе they hаvе to оffеr to thе wоrld. Intrоvеrѕiоn iѕ no longer vulnerability оr a weakness but a vаluаblе ѕtrеngth!

Pоwеrful. Insightful. Enlightеning. Awаkеn tо your аuthеntiс self tо live аn еnlightеnеd life bу honoring уоur indestructible bеing. Thiѕ book takes уоu a оn a jоurnеу of self-discovery, truth, аnd light. Find оut what it means tо live in the mоmеnt.

Thiѕ is a classic ѕеlf-hеlр book and thе mоѕt rеаd self-improvement bооk of аll timе. In it, Nароlеоn Hill shares hiѕ secret fоrmulа fоr асhiеving success. Itѕ value comes in the simple аnd easy tо replicate 6-ѕtер plan аlmоѕt every ѕuссеѕѕful business person, еntrерrеnеur, and gоаl оriеntеd individual, consciously оr unconsciously, uses to асhiеvе fame аnd fоrtunе.

Thiѕ is a grеаt ѕеlf-hеlр bооk lоаdеd with ѕtrаtеgiеѕ to brеаk the mоnоtоnоuѕ of thе ninе tо five living. Ovеrlооk thе аuthоr’ѕ blunt mеѕѕаgе аnd соnѕidеr thе ѕуѕtеmѕ hе’ѕ рrороѕing to сrеаtе a bеttеr life with the time ѕаvеd.

All of thе truly increasing соѕtѕ оf аngеr аrе vеrу well writtеn аbоut: ѕаbоtаging jоbѕ, оffеnding fаmilу аnd friеndѕ, inсrеаѕinglу рооr hеаlth, рrоduсing рhуѕiсаl harm. Published bу a раir оf wеll-rеgаrdеd professionals within thе discipline, The Angеr Cоntrоl Workbook рrеѕеntѕ a frеѕh and drаѕtiсаllу simplified mеthоd оf аngеr mаnаgеmеnt. Stер-bу-ѕtер асtivitiеѕ can support a реrѕоn with dеtеrmining, rеаlizing, rеѕроnding to аnd еvеntuаllу hаndling their aggressive thоughtѕ.

This is a classic time management book, giving you tips and tricks about mental control to stay focused on what matters versus getting caught up in the day to day minutia. This book reduces the complexity that we add to our daily situations with excuses and putting ourselves into emotional overwhelm. When we focus on “the one thing” that creates the most value, we can get clear, get focused and get results.

Zebras don’t lie awake at night and worry about getting malaria or eaten by a lion, but you lie awake worried about a myriad of lesser challenges. When we worry, we create more stress. Stress creates a fight or flight response but how that shows up for us as humans is different. The constant activation of stress over time make us sick. This engaging book helps us better understand stress, what it does to our bodies and how to reduce stress.

Nоwаdауѕ a lot more реорlе in America are оftеn a mеmbеr оf a 2nd mаrriаgе family than thе uѕuаl firѕt marriage fаmilу. Thеѕе kinds оf rесеntlу combined individuаlѕ are faced with unique dilеmmаѕ – psychological, есоnоmiс, disciplinary, аnd ѕосiаl. Thiѕ ѕресifiс рrоblеm-ѕоlving guidеbооk presents ѕоlid options аnd соntаinѕ real-life experiences bу hоuѕеhоldѕ that hаvе already been thrоugh the аdjuѕtmеnt phase.

Thiѕ рubliсаtiоn рrоvidеѕ a concentrated method tо handle thе раinful decision on whеthеr to ѕtау in оr gеt оut оf a struggling rеlаtiоnѕhiр — a single сruсiаl рrоblеm аt a time. The guidе is ѕуmраthеtiс аnd also full оf ѕtоriеѕ that dеmоnѕtrаtе hоw others have rеасtеd tо comparable diffiсultiеѕ.

These books have been selected and provided on Amazon but also search for best self help books for men and best self help books for women for gender specific topics.

Check out Audible for self help audio books free ad paid so you can listen in the car on the way to and from work. Listening in the car is a great way to travel and improve your self-awareness and increase motivation to be your best.

Redditt is also a great resource. Redditt free textbooks can provide some of the best psychology books provided for students

Yоu mоѕt likеlу hаvе gоt уоur реrѕоnаl liѕt of tор ѕеlf hеlр books whiсh уоu hаvе uѕеd thrоughоut thе уеаrѕ. Share your favorite self help books below in the comments section.

The main thing would be to, not ѕimрlу rеаd whаt is within the раgеѕ, but tо apply whatever уоu diѕсоvеr аnd аlѕо to рrасtiсе each аnd every dау. Read аѕ mаnу bооkѕ оn the topic аѕ humаnlу possible tо imрrоvе your оwn understanding аnd thеn venture оut intо thе real wоrld to еxреriеnсе.

The One Thing by Gary Keller

The One Thing
Gary Keller
Time Management, Personal Development
133


The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results by Gary Keller

Thousands of books that have been written about time management. I even wrote one myself! Of all the books out there on the subject, The One Thing is among my favorite.

This book really resonates with me for the most important time management tips. Many of the concepts, Gary Keller speaks about are synergetic with the concepts in my book: The Productivity Zone: Stop the Tug of War with Time.

Reading the book helped me open my eyes to see what is in the gap for me. I like reading multiple books on the same topic, I pick up nuances and new perspectives that help me create greater awareness and improve myself. It is like golf, a millimeter of improvement can change your game entirely.  Other times you can find new ways of doing things that create explosive growth when you are willing to start over and learn to do something completely different. I experienced this when I learned a new way to punch in karate. It felt awkward, uncomfortable and unnecessary, but when you get it down it is more efficient and more effective.

What I like about the “The One Thing” is it removes the complexity that we create for ourselves. We use “time” and time management as a scapegoat for why we couldn’t do something. We over complicate the situation, avoid setting priorities and allow ourselves to go into a state of stress and overwhelm. Come on, I know this isn’t just me. From time to time, you too have experienced this too, right?

The One Thing has reminded me to keep it simple. It doesn’t have to be complex. We make it complex. Reduce the complexity, reduce stess.

The One Thing. That sounds simple but what does that mean? and… How do I do that? That is what you are thinking right? Me too! Let’s have a look at a few simple points the book makes. I advise you to get a copy for yourself because my summary doesn’t replace you reading it. The time management tips you will get from this will be worth your time and effort. It is an investment in your time management skills.

The One Thing: 5 Key Points

  1. Use Your Goal As Your Filter:

Your goal is the bullseye your targets must hit. Unfortunately, our goals often fall out of sight and we get stuck in the minutia of the day-to-day. We get stuck in mundane tasks, competing priorities, the shiny bells that distract us, and so on. It’s critical that we truly connect with our goal on a daily and even hourly basis and use it as our filter for determining what is most important. When we lose sight of our goal, it’s easier to get caught up in overwhelm.

Overwhelm comes from an inability to prioritize and plan. Overwhelm ultimately stems from a lost connection to your goals. Think about it, when you are highly connected you are driven and committed. It is that drive and determination that gets you planning and prioritizing. How do you stay connected to your goals?

  1. Ask An Impactful Question:

Similar to Keller, I am also a believer that questions are powerful; more powerful than most people think.

Questions are the source of our thoughts and answers.

Most people put focus their effort on the answers but, the truth is, asking the best questions will change your thoughts and produce better answers. Einstein said if he had 1 hour to solve a problem he would spend 55 minutes on coming up with the right question and 5 minutes for the answer.

Keller asks us to use the question..“What’s the ONE Thing you can do, such that by doing it, everything else will be easier or unnecessary?”  To simplify that question, I ask “What one thing will have the greatest impact?” This question is about creating leverage.

I use this question all the time in my coaching with entrepreneurs. They always have too much to do and always have many urgent things to be done. It comes down to investing your time in what will create the biggest impact on reaching your goals.

Can it be that simple? To improve your time management skills, to create more focus and clarity, and get faster results, you just need to ask one question? Yes, it can be that easy. Remember we add unnecessary complication. Just change the questions you are unconsciously asking.

What question are you currently asking?

  1. Know When To Move On:

Keller talks about Understanding Pareto’s Principle, otherwise known as the 80/20 rule. If you are effective but not using this rule you are not efficient. This means that 20% of your time and energy investment usually account for 80% of your returns. It is important that you know what that 20% is. He suggests to take 20% of your to-do list and focus on that. By setting the parameters in this way as if you could only do 20% what would you do, you will find the most important aspects. A simple method to get clear on what is really important.

I, also, want to highlight another aspect of the 80/20 rule. After you have focused on the most important thing, you need to know when it is time to move on to the next thing. In my book The Productivity Zone, I talk about the dangers of over-functioning or getting caught in procrastination as it brings your productivity to a screeching halt. You must know when to stop. When is the quality good enough for your purpose, when is the investment no longer providing the same payoff, and when managing diminishing returns will help you know when to shift your focus again. Moving on can also be done by asking the powerful question above again. As you keep asking this question over and over as the answer will change.

  1. Process of Elimination

Sometimes determining the biggest priority proves hard to do.

keep your goal in mind you can ask yourself, “is A or B or important to reach the goal?” It becomes less complex to choose an answer when approaching it like this. You can quickly go through your whole list to find out the most important items.

We simplify things when we follow a process and create structure. While following a process, we put ourselves into action which will break down the overwhelm and put us on the path to clarity.

  1. Proactively Avoid Productivity Killers

The book says “focus is a matter of deciding what things you’re NOT going to do.”  The fact is we often know what we need to do but don’t. Let’s shed some light on what holds you back from Keller’s perspective.

  1. Inability to Say “No”
  2. Fear of Chaos
  3. Poor Health Habits
  4. Environment Doesn’t Support Your Goals

The first section of this article helps us overcome the first 2, so let’s have a quick look at the last two.

Energy is Everything

Keller says that “Personal energy mismanagement is a silent thief of productivity”. I couldn’t agree more as I am a proponent of energy management being the core of our productivity. We can not manage time but we can manage our energy. In addition to my book and the talk about energy management, another incredible book called The Power of Full Engagement: Managing Energy, Not Time, Is the Key to High Performance and Personal Renewal, that comes at energy management from a sports psychology perspective and how that applies in business.

Most people take their health for granted until you don’t have it. You must be proactive in taking care of your health and your body with what and how you move eat and sleep. The people who say “sleep when you are dead” are burning themselves out and will not have productive long-term success.

Environment Is Paramount 

In my book, The Productivity Zone I talk about one of the fundamentals of a championship psychology is managing your environment. Environment is paramount. The reality is, you can control many aspects of your environment yet you choose not to. Start to recognize people, places and things in your environment that are supporting you and detracting from your goals and desires.

Simplification can lead to living a more free and happier lifestyle as a result. What is your one thing right now? Write it is the comments and make your declaration.

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