"The Man, The Mission, The Passion" Husband, Father, Attorney, CPA, Steward Leader, Entrepreneur, MBA, Author, Builder, HBS OPM 25 Class, Mentor, Teacher

The Illusion of Half-Working

productive not busy

“Half-Working” is the time we spend being non-productive when we are supposed to be working. For most, it is close to 25% of their alleged working time, for others it is 50% or more. Want a wake-up call? Install Rescue Time on your computer and it will tell you how you spend your screen time; how much time on you spend on various websites, on email, on other tasks; you can even program it to keep you off certain sites after “x” period of time.

Key to productivity is to focus on “Desired Results” NOT mere activity, have ACTION Plan:

– Goals for the day, the week, the month

– Include interim deadlines, targets, clear accountability points

– Create Clarity around what success will look like; what will be different, how will it change your world, what specific results will be achieved, how will they be sustained/maintained

There are many things to which I attribute my success in life and one key was productivity. Early on I learned how to FOCUS my efforts the way a magnifying glass focuses the Sun’s rays to create heat and start a fire (i.e. Burning Sense of Urgency aka Fire in the Belly). In college I used to be amazed at “study groups”; my observation was that the vast majority of time was spent socializing, very little actual studying yet they seemed convinced that they were doing something that furthered their learning. I had a few fellow students whose study ethic I respected; if I hit a roadblock in understanding I’d hit them up for some insight (and vice versa) but we studied solo, without distraction, like monks.

Closing Quotes:

“Never mistake motion for action.” – Ernest Hemingway, 1899-1961

“The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.” – Stephen Covey, 1932-2012

“Until we can manage time, we can manage nothing else. Nothing is less productive than to make more efficient what should not be done at all.” – Peter Drucker, 1911-2005

“Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort.” – Paul J. Meyer, 1928-2009

“Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work.” – Stephen King, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft

“If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you’ll never get it done.” – Bruce Lee, 1940-1977

“Concentrate all your thoughts upon the work in hand. The Sun’s rays do not burn until brought to a focus.” – Alexander Graham Bell, 1847-1922

As always, I share what I most want/need to learn. – Nathan S. Collier

 

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