To be successful in what you choose to do, you may find short rules helpful.
The famous 80/20 formula of Pareto principle with its practical application across any area (for example, in marketing), 70 percent rule and even 2 minute rule are linked in easy to follow tips based on top experts' experience that we quote below.
Why is it important? These rules are of value because they:
- support us in making decisions daily
- create mental clarity in critical situations
- help work with agility and consistency.
Rules1️⃣2️⃣3️⃣ For Building Productive Habits 📈🌱
James Clear wrote in his Atomic Habits that became classics of personal productivity:
We imitate the habits of three groups in particular: The close. The many. The powerful.
Aside from who shapes your habit building, it is good to remember words highlighting the power of our habits attributed to Bruce Lee:
I fear not the man who has practiced 10000 kicks, but I do fear the man who has practiced one kick 10000 times.
In his speech at graduation ceremony in the University of Florida, Warren Buffet rather than talking about obvious benefits of good habits, stated the utmost importance of avoiding bad habits at all cost.
...most behaviors are habitual. The chains of habit are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken.
Hit the target🎯🌟: consistency, healthy routine, motivation, deliberate practice
Rules1️⃣2️⃣ For Managing Tasks 🧩✅
Chris Bailey addressed the fears about how to start that most of us can relate to in his book The Productivity Project: Accomplishing More by Managing Your Time, Attention, and Energy:
The dread of doing a task uses up more time and energy than doing the task itself.
Doing most challenging tasks at time when you are in the best mental shape greatly resonates with Albert Einstein's idea expressed in one of his interviews on what builds true success:
Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.
Since not all work hours are equal, we believe that knowing your peak productivity hours by time tracking can be helpful.❗🤑❗
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Hit the target🎯🌟: peak productivity, task management
Rules1️⃣2️⃣3️⃣For Keeping Focus 💡⏳
Idowu Koyenikan in his work 'Wealth for All: Living a Life of Success at the Edge of Your Ability' stated the simple rule of focusing:
Where your attention goes, your time goes.
What is the focus and why do we need it in business productivity? Sam Altman wrote in his blog:
Focus is a force multiplier on work.
Peter F. Drucker in his best-selling book The Effective Executive underlined that keeping focus on task at hand means doing things not only faster but more effectively:
If there is any one “secret” of effectiveness, it is concentration. Effective executives do first things first and they do one thing at a time.
More on strategies that improve focus, we recommend to read here.
Hit the target🎯🌟: attention, productive work, results
Rules1️⃣2️⃣For Schedule 📅⌚
John C. Maxwell famously noted:
You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.
Healthy routine showcased its special value in the pandemic. People had to adjust to WFH and rebuild their daily activities while navigating between work and family responsibilities.
It sharpened skills of scheduling time despite the high level of uncertainty.
Indeed, a clear daily schedule is helpful because it shifts focus from how you feel to what you intend to do and where you are going. Making sure that a plan is actionable is crucial.
Otherwise, according to Joel Arthur Barker :
Vision without action is merely a dream.
Hit the target🎯🌟: creating a smooth workflow
Rules1️⃣2️⃣ For Accountability 🤝🏾
While employees' purposes may be personal, accountability in the work environment is the building block in establishing trustworthy relationships and an important contributor to business growth.
According to Bob Proctor :
Accountability is the glue that ties commitment to the results.
The widely known Americal geopolitical expert Henry A. Kissinger pointed out that accountability will bring meaning not only to work but assist in creating a meaningful productive life as well:
People think responsibility is hard to bear. It's not. I think that sometimes it is the absence of responsibility that is harder to bear. You have a great feeling of impotence.
Hit the target🎯🌟: efficiency, progress
Rules1️⃣2️⃣3️⃣For Taking Breaks 🧘🏿♀️🎧🎶
A famous educator, poet and historian Maya Angelou addressed the connection of productivity and mental health in the following quote::
Each person deserves a day away in which no problems are confronted, no solutions searched for.
Erik Pevernagie whose work as an artist and writer was marked with high productivity outlined benefits of taking a break:
Let’s loosen up some time and take a break to re-calibrate our life. We need no endless over-thinking, though. Let’s just connect the dots, set the scene, and steam ahead.
Russell Eric Dobda , a traveler and acclaimed author, took a step further and claimed breaks as essentials for sparkling your creativity:
Taking a break can lead to breakthroughs.
Hit the target🎯🌟: prioritizing mental health
Rules1️⃣2️⃣For Commitment 💎💎
We will keep it short here because Seth Godin summarizes it all:
You don't need a new plan for next year. You need a commitment.
By words of Peter F. Drucker a mogul in management consultancy that we cited above, commitment helps ideas transcend and lead us forward:
Unless commitment is made, there are only promises and hopes...
Hit the target🎯🌟: priorities, endurance, commitment
Rules1️⃣2️⃣ For Planning 📆📄
The huge costs of not being adequately prepared might result from a failure in planning. We might end up working longer, which creates a risk to deplete motivation. To avoid it, we can leverage planning tools.
As Atul Gawande put it in 'The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right:
... under conditions of complexity, not only are checklists a help, they are required for success.
Though not strictly productivity content, The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien can be definitely a source of inspiration for successful planning.
When you outline the plan you cover half the way to your goal but when you consider all the risks, you do the most important part in project planning, - you minimize uncertainty.
It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations, if you live near one.
Hit the target🎯🌟: forecasting
Rule1️⃣ For Managing Work Hours ✨⏳
Considering the fact that we dedicate more than 80000 hours of our lives to building careers, the interest in managing work time at best comes as no surprise. Being efficient and productive is all about being on time, either in work or in life. But 'the more' is not equal 'the better'.
Data on productivity demonstrate that in richer economies working hours decrease while workers' productivity increases:
The image source is Our World in Data
This correlation resonates with Louis Brandeis' words whose heritage in law science was widely recognized across the US:
The best of wages will not compensate for excessively long working hours which undermine heath.
To manage work hours, employee time tracking can an ideal solution for prevention of burnout while keeping everybody accountable.
Hit the target🎯🌟: time management, revenue, income, burnout prevention
Rules1️⃣2️⃣3️⃣ For Smart Goals 📚🔊📊
Why are goals important? After all, they are just wishes and ideas.
The Canadian entrepreneur and investor Robert Herjavec said:
What is great about entrepreneurship is that entrepreneurs create the tangible from the intangible.
This saying sums up the importance of goal setting: start with the idea, turn it into a goal, it will pave way to achieving results.
In Tough Times Never Last, But Tough People Do!, Robert H. Schuller stated that goals are driving forces in work and life:
Goals are not only absolutely necessary to motivate us. They are essential to really keep us alive.
An industrial engineer Allen F. Morgenstern coined the phrase “work smarter not harder” in the 1930s, and in 1981, George Doran, Arthur Miller and James Cunningham extended the definition of 'smart' to goal setting: :
There's a S.M.A.R.T. way to write management goals and objectives
Since then, it became a common practice to set goals that are
Hit the target🎯🌟: achievement, motivation boost, roadmap
Rules1️⃣2️⃣ For Handling Fatigue 🔇
Striving for super productivity can lead to metric obsession, which in the long run is the destination your mental health needs the least.
We love the rule by Ichiro Suzuki, one of the most renowned baseball players in history:
When I am in a slump, I ask myself for advice.
We can vouch that introspection can be the best remedy for combatting virtual fatigue and getting valuable insights in what you need to focus on.
And show some self-compassion to ignite our determination further, we can keep in mind another saying by Friedrich Nietzsche :
If we have our own ‘why’ of life we shall get along with almost any ‘how’.
Hit the target🎯🌟: healthy boundaries, work life balance
End Note 🏁
Given the productivity impact on quality of our life, we share a curated list of the rules from the top experts on every single thing related to your productivity and time management success.
Relying on experts' wisdom will not provide all the answers we are searching for. However, we are sure that you can easily build a personalized productivity system and achieve results you truly desire once you put the golden rules above into practice.