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The Productivity Show

Updated 7 days ago

Business
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At The Productivity Show we believe you should get your important things done without having to sacrifice your health, family and things that matter to you. This is a weekly podcast where we show you ways to save time, increase your productivity and happiness. We cover topics such as goal setting, time management, personal development and efficiency. Listen to our podcast today and start doubling your productivity.

Read more

At The Productivity Show we believe you should get your important things done without having to sacrifice your health, family and things that matter to you. This is a weekly podcast where we show you ways to save time, increase your productivity and happiness. We cover topics such as goal setting, time management, personal development and efficiency. Listen to our podcast today and start doubling your productivity.

iTunes Ratings

348 Ratings
Average Ratings
286
28
16
9
9

Favorite Podcast

By E wu star - Oct 01 2018
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I relate to this show significantly. My favorite.

200 Strong 💪

By TrueGordon - Jun 29 2018
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Awesome!!! Thanks for the “value” you all provide 🙏

iTunes Ratings

348 Ratings
Average Ratings
286
28
16
9
9

Favorite Podcast

By E wu star - Oct 01 2018
Read more
I relate to this show significantly. My favorite.

200 Strong 💪

By TrueGordon - Jun 29 2018
Read more
Awesome!!! Thanks for the “value” you all provide 🙏
Cover image of The Productivity Show

The Productivity Show

Latest release on Feb 17, 2020

The Best Episodes Ranked Using User Listens

Updated by OwlTail 7 days ago

Rank #1: TPS58: Getting Things Done w/ David Allen

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We are honored to have David Allen on the podcast, as we have mentioned his Getting Things Done methodology on almost every episode. Zack and David discuss the updated version of David’s book, how to change your habit and clear your mind, and how David implements his own methodology.

Cheat Sheet

  • Why David thinks starting with the immediate mess on your desk is more important than starting with your goals
  • How to get in the driver’s seat of your life
  • About open loops
  • How long it takes for people to change a habit
  • Why people fall off the habit and how to overcome it
  • The famous people that David has coached on the GTD methodology
  • The value of having space in your head
  • Why constraints are the seed-bed of creativity
  • What Contexts are and which ones are relevant
  • What contexts David uses
  • About the weekly review and what David does during his weekly review
  • The rituals that he does every day

Links

Book, tool, ritual

Book:

Tool:

Ritual:

  • Emptying his head and inbox once a day

Connect with David Allen

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Sticher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Sep 28 2015

38mins

Play

Rank #2: How to Take Massive Action on Your Goals by Implementing the 12 Week Year Effectively (TPS138)

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Many people make New Year’s resolutions and have grandiose plans for the year, but often fail to follow through and execute on them. In this episode, 12 Week Year 2.0 module creator and Dojo member Brandon Wentland shares how to overcome these common problem by implementing The 12 Week Year method effectively. He shares his experience and how he implemented the 12 Week Year method successfully at both a personal and professional level. We cover the concept of intentional imbalance, the importance of a strong vision, and the power of habits to help you overcome resistance and take massive action on your goals. If you’ve ever felt stuck or been frustrated by your own lack of action, you definitely want to check out this episode as it will help you break out of the status quo and create the life you’ve always dreamed of.

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Do you want to get an email with shownotes each time a podcast goes live? Then let us know where to send the updates by entering your first name and email.

Cheat Sheet

  • Brandon’s personal productivity journey [1:49]
  • The problems with traditional planning and how the 12 Week Year solves them [3:00]
  • How using the 12 Week Year framework provides flexibility to help you reach your goals [6:58]
  • The importance of vision and breaking down your goals so it’s really easy to take action on them [9:16]
  • Why planning for the entire year is not effective and New Year’s resolutions don’t work [11:34]
  • How to set up your 12 week sprint so success is inevitable [17:03]
  • Tips on how to select your objectives during your 12 Week Year planning [20:10]
  • How to take massive action on your goals once you have your objectives [22:25]
  • How to craft a vision statement that inspires action and creates motivation [27:05]
  • Integrating the 12 Week Year with the Getting Things Done (GTD) methodology [29:34]
  • Why writing down your goals creates motivation to follow through and achieve them [33:15]
  • How to put your time for 12 Week Year actions on your calendar [36:47]
  • The importance of creating time to recharge, focus, and do admin tasks [41:13]
  • Why accountability is important and how to use it for the 12 week year [44:03]
  • Why and how consistent execution is the key to achieving your goals [51:02]
  • What to do when you’re burnt out (and how to avoid this in the first place) [53:15]

Links

Connect with Brandon Wentland

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Apr 10 2017

56mins

Play

Rank #3: The 8 Root Causes of Procrastination & How to Beat Them (TPS167)

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Everyone deals with procrastination, but the reasons why may be drastically different for each person. In this episode, Thanh and Mike dive into the 8 different root causes of procrastination and how to overcome them so you can figure out what’s causing you to get tripped up when trying to get your work done. They walk you through the 9 different types of procrastinators and share tactics for each procrastinating personality type to help you overcome procrastination when it strikes. If you find yourself putting off work that you know you need to do, this episode will help you overcome that feeling of being stuck and help you start taking action on your goals.

Get Podcast Updates

Do you want to get an email with shownotes each time a podcast goes live? Then let us know where to send the updates by entering your first name and email.

Cheat Sheet

  • Some of the root causes of procrastination [1:43]
  • Where the disconnect comes from when you understand something logically but not emotionally [4:56]
  • What happens when you have a lack of clarity [7:59]
  • Why people can struggle with taking action when they have a lot to do and feel overwhelmed [12:48]
  • How fear can hold you back from being productive when you have a task that you don’t want to deal with [15:58]
  • Why resentment can boil up when you are asked to do something that you don’t want to do [21:27]
  • How to switch from a negative mindset to a positive mindset and get your work done [25:00]
  • What happens when you have low energy and you put off doing a task [25:40]
  • How jumping between tasks can really hurt your productivity [29:36]
  • How to say “no” to more projects so you can say “yes” to the ones that are really important [32:35]
  • The 9 different types of procrastinators (or procrastinating personality types) [35:49]
  • How to keep yourself from avoiding tasks until the last minute [40:18]
  • Why perfectionism is such a serious issue for some people [44:17]
  • How first-time entrepreneurs often get stuck when they over-promise something and procrastinate because they’re in over their heads [51:19]
  • How and why working on tasks you don’t want to do zaps your energy [55:31]
  • Why your great ideas don’t turn into action [1:02:27]
  • The real signs that you’re procrastinating because you’re in the wrong job [1:07:41]

Links

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Oct 30 2017

1hr 15mins

Play

Rank #4: TPS68: The 5am Miracle w/ Jeff Sanders

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Jeff Sanders chats with Zack about his new book, the 5am Miracle, and how getting up earlier changed his life. He talks about the phases of productivity, including planning, executing, and reviewing. Listen in to reframe how you look at your life and see how his book and podcast can help you.

Cheat Sheet

  • What turned Jeff into an early riser
  • How you can make the ritual of waking up early actually stick
  • Why working out early in the day can help energize your workday
  • Why every day should have a written plan, and what Jeff’s personal plan looks like
  • Jeff explains his favorite idea from the book: focused blocks of time
  • How to setup the “focus zone” for maximum productivity
  • What “Project Management Zero” is and why it’s important
  • How Jeff uses the concepts of “Desktop Zero” and “Home Base Zero”
  • Why the review process is so critical to your productivity

Links

Book, tool, ritual

Book: The One Thing
Tool: StayFocused (Chrome app)
Ritual: Meditation for at least 10 minutes per day

Connect with Jeff Sanders

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Sticher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Dec 07 2015

37mins

Play

Rank #5: Overlap: A simple strategy for closing the gap between where you are and where you want to be w/ Sean McCabe (TPS163)

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Your ideal future is a lot closer than you might think. In this episode, Mike talks with entrepreneur and author Sean McCabe about how to create the future you’ve always dreamed of bu starting right where you’re at. Sean runs seanwes.com: a learning community for entrepreneurs looking to do fulfilling work. Sean is also the author of Overlap: Start a Business While Working a Full-Time Job. We go deep on several of the topics Sean covers in his book, including embracing an abundance mindset, why you can’t compromise when it comes to achieving your goals, and why Sean believes “Yes” is the most expensive word in the English language.

Get Podcast Updates

Do you want to get an email with shownotes each time a podcast goes live? Then let us know where to send the updates by entering your first name and email.

Cheat Sheet

  • Why Sean made it his goal to help people reach financial freedom [1:23]
  • How he defines the concept of “overlap” [3:14]
  • Why so many people fall into the trap of the scarcity mindset [6:27]
  • Why you should create goals that are outside of your current reality [10:30]
  • How to identify what to say no to so that you can focus on the right things [14:56]
  • Why yes and no are directional words, not emotional words [17:23]
  • About the sabbaticals that he takes and gives his employees [19:46]
  • Why it might not matter what you do as a side hustle because you can course correct [24:28]
  • How you can start by teaching what you know [29:22]
  • About the trifecta of making money from any pursuit [31:30]
  • Why you should only sell your services at full value or for free, and never discount [34:31]
  • How you attract what you project [39:39]
  • Why you can do many things, but you should choose only one thing to share publicly [45:34]

Links

Connect with Sean McCabe

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Oct 02 2017

49mins

Play

Rank #6: 3 Keys to Planning the Perfect Week (TPS156)

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Do you find yourself wishing you had more time to devote to the things that are really important to you? Chances are it’s not actually a lack of time that’s the problem, it’s how you approach it. Join us as Brooks and Mike break down how to change your mindset so that you can plan and execute your perfect week. Implementing small tweaks to your weekly planning process can help you make significant steps towards your ideal future, and in this episode we’ll teach you 3 key steps to planning your perfect week, explain what tasks you should schedule on your calendar, and show you how to get back on track when things don’t go exactly according to plan.

Get Podcast Updates

Do you want to get an email with shownotes each time a podcast goes live? Then let us know where to send the updates by entering your first name and email.

Cheat Sheet

  • Why you MUST schedule the things that you actually want to get done [1:33]
  • The real reason why time (not money) is your most precious commodity [4:38]
  • Visualization exercise you can use to picture your perfect week [5:47]
  • Step-by-step exercise to execute your perfect week [11:43]
  • Different ways to figure out what your are currently spending your time on [12:47]
  • The importance of telling your time where to go and why every hour needs a job [17:29]
  • Why you need to write down what you want to get done on your calendar [22:37]
  • The reason why the most important things to you NEED to go on your calendar first [26:13]
  • How Brooks implemented these strategies to start DocumentSnap while working a corporate job [30:36]
  • Why scheduling “thinking time” in order to disconnect is so important [34:12]
  • How to create time for personal development even when you are super-busy [39:36]
  • What to do when things don’t go according to plan (hint: Don’t panic!) [43:00]

Links

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Aug 14 2017

55mins

Play

Rank #7: The Calendar, Planning, and Theming Strategies You Need To Win Your Week w/ Lauren Goldstein (TPS231)

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Today we have Lauren Goldstein, an entrepreneur and business strategy consultant from Austin, TX. Lauren and Thanh have known each other for a while and we invited her to come on the podcast to share her unique approach to productivity.

You’re going to get specific tips on how to use a calendar to run your life and business, how you can theme your days and weeks to stay focused, and how you should plan your weeks in advance with a simple tool.

Thanks to Slack for supporting The Productivity Show. Find out more at their website.

Get Podcast Updates

Do you want to get an email with shownotes each time a podcast goes live? Then let us know where to send the updates by entering your first name and email.

Cheat Sheet:

  • What admin days are, and why they have been so important for Lauren [4:19]
  • What a typical admin day looks like for Lauren [6:18]
  • How Lauren ‘themes’ her weeks and focuses on what’s important for her business [8:30]
  • The misconception about goals that Lauren sees most often with her clients [13:10]
  • What Lauren recommends if you’re looking to plan or theme your week [18:18]
  • How to deal with the unexpected on your admin day [26:18]
  • How Lauren plans her week out [28:26]
  • Handling the important but not urgent tasks [32:59]
  • How Lauren increase her clients profit without looking for more work [37:13]
  • How you can streamline your calendar and your scheduling [40:07]
  • What tasks Lauren automates with Zapier to save her time [46:16]
  • The key to getting ready for the day quickly [48:06]
  • Lauren’s tips for women to get ready quicker in the morning [56:10]

Links

Connect with Lauren Goldstein:

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Jan 21 2019

1hr 2mins

Play

Rank #8: TPS97: Planning in 90-day Periods w/ Kendra Wright

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Kendra Wright is back on the podcast to talk about why planning in 90-day periods is good for your professional and personal life. We chat about the advantages of not setting yearly goals, scheduling in time for rest and relaxation, and executing over planning.

12 Week Year Tips

If you want to receive more information and tips on implementing the 12-week year, let us know where to send them


Cheat Sheet

  • Why the 12-month timeline isn’t designed to move you towards action (and what you should be doing instead of setting annual goals)
  • The advantages of planning in 12-week cycles and how this can help you hit your goals more consistently
  • The key difference between setting goals and actually executing them
  • How we romanticize getting started (and what it really looks like to show and get things done)
  • Why assessing where you are at more frequently than once a year can help you stay on track
  • Why it’s so important to rest and take breaks (and how this makes you more productive in the long run)
  • Why you don’t have to earn your breaks (and how you can overcome feeling guilty about taking them)
  • How to schedule an effective 90-day sprint while integrating rest and recovery
  • How to schedule your day to integrate breaks so that you can make sure you are functioning at peak efficiency

Links

Connect with Kendra Wright

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Sticher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Jun 27 2016

32mins

Play

Rank #9: How Journaling Can Make You 25% Happier (TPS154)

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Journaling is a bit of a buzzword in the productivity space, but with good reason. And in this episode, Mike and Brooks explain why it’s so important. They dive into the many benefits of journaling, and share 5 tips for making journaling actionable and effective. They explain how to implement a journaling habit, recommend some different tools and apps you can use, and explain how to make the habit stick. If you’ve never understood why you should journal or you have trouble doing it consistently, then this episode is for you.

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Do you want to get an email with shownotes each time a podcast goes live? Then let us know where to send the updates by entering your first name and email.

Cheat Sheet

  • Why there’s a stigma associated with journaling (and why’s it isn’t true) [1:39]
  • The benefits that come from pairing journaling and meditation [5:13]
  • How journaling increases your mindfulness [7:53]
  • The ways that journaling actually increases the likelihood that you will actually achieve your goals [9:55]
  • How journaling strengthens self-discipline and improves communication skills [14:15]
  • Why many people do something called “morning pages” and how it sets their day up for success [18:24]
  • Why you don’t need to take a long time each day to journal (it’s the consistency that counts) [20:27]
  • Why it is so important to keep your journal positive [24:09]
  • The benefits of keeping a gratitude journal and how it impacts your outlook on your life [26:07]
  • Why it is important to see the gains you’ve made by reviewing your journal [32:17]
  • How to use journaling to identify pain points in your life so you can fix and solve them [36:38]
  • AE recommendations for digital journals and apps you can use [38:38]
  • Why you might want to use an analog journal and the benefits of pen and paper [48:42]
  • Why it is so important for you to pick a time to journal that works for you and stick to it [55:03]
  • Using automation and prompts to make journaling more efficient [58:24]
  • 5 tips to make the most of your journaling experience [1:04:56]
  • Why you should review your journal on a regular basis [1:06:19]

Links

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Jul 31 2017

1hr 11mins

Play

Rank #10: The 3 Things You Need to Maximize Your Productivity (TPS121)

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Chris Bailey spent a year trying out different productivity concepts, using himself as the subject of his experiments. Mike Schmitz talks with Chris about what he learned from experiments such as not talking to other humans for 10 days, working only 20 hours one week, and more. They also discuss other topics covered in Chris’s new book, The Productivity Project.

Get Podcast Updates

Do you want to get an email with shownotes each time a podcast goes live? Then let us know where to send these updates.

Cheat Sheet

  • How Chris overcame a devastating injury that happened abroad while he was writing his book
  • How setting three intentions per day and how that can help you take significant progress on your goals
  • The difference between contentment and complacency and how expressing gratitude can help keep you moving forward
  • Simple tactics you can use to cultivate happiness and train your brain to think more positively
  • How looking back at what you have accomplished helps you feel empowered to take on the next task
  • The most meaningful productivity experiment Chris conducted while writing his book and the impact it still has on him today
  • Why waking up early might not actually make you more productive (contrary to popular opinion)
  • The surprising results that Chris achieved when he decided to work for only 20 hours in a week
  • Why your productivity is determined by how you manage your time, attention, and energy
  • How you can figure out your own biological prime time and maximize your productivity by focusing on when you work
  • One tip keep your email processing time to a minimum
  • How increasing your productivity can lead you to live a more meaningful life
  • Why not all tasks are created equal and how you can level up your productivity by choosing the constraints you choose to operate within
  • What Chris’s daily routine looks like
  • Why he disconnects from devices and the Internet every evening and the benefits

Links

Connect with Chris Bailey

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Sticher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Dec 12 2016

53mins

Play

Rank #11: TPS99: Procrastination

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Procrastination is something that hits all of us, and many people struggle with it on a regular basis. In this episode we dive into the myths about procrastination, and eight tactics you can use to fight through to take real steps towards actually accomplishing your goals.

Get Podcast Updates

Do you want to get an email with shownotes each time a podcast goes live? Then let us know where to send these updates.

Cheat Sheet

  • Who exactly are procrastinators anyway?
  • Reasons why people who procrastinate are people who care the most about the work, not the least
  • The 4 actions you can take right now to move you forward and get over procrastination
  • How committing to and scheduling actions can actually help you accomplish to them
  • Why written plans are so important to goal achievement
  • What batching is and how you can use it in your own life to get more things done
  • How to create a someday-maybe list you’ll actually use
  • Tips to creating a regular review schedule and sticking to it
  • The major advantages inherent with working in sprints
  • How to create a vision for your plan of action (and why this is so important)

Links

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Sticher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Jul 11 2016

22mins

Play

Rank #12: The Right Tool For The Job: 5 Things You Need For Your Personal Productivity System (TPS180)

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Productivity can be very personal, but all good systems have a couple of things in common. In this episode, Brooks and Mike talk about 5 things you absolutely MUST have for an effective personal productivity system. They define what a personal productivity system is, talk about the advantages and disadvantages of the different approaches, and walk you through the necessary pieces you need to make sure you stay on top of everything. They also give you some implementation tips to help you make sure the system you decide to use works for you so that you stick with it long enough to start realizing the benefit.

Get Podcast Updates

Do you want to get an email with shownotes each time a podcast goes live? Then let us know where to send the updates by entering your first name and email.

Cheat Sheet

  • What it means to have a personal productivity system [1:38]
  • The analog vs digital approaches to personal productivity systems [6:30]
  • Why it might be beneficial to start with analog tools even if you’re a “digital native” [10:48]
  • Tool #1: a calendar, and why everything you need to do must be done within the context of time [14:28]
  • The criteria for deciding what gets added to your calendar [22:23]
  • Tool #2 :a time tracker [31:16]
  • Why time trackers help you figure out how you actually spend your time so that you can make changes to how you spend it [37:01]
  • Tool #3: a contact manager [44:26]
  • Tool #4: a note taker [51:00]
  • Tool #5:  a task manager [59:32]3
  • Why the weekly review is so important [1:02:06]
  • Implementation tips for the 5 tools of your personal productivity system [1:08:48]
  • Why the best solution is often the simplest one [1:16:05]

Links

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Jan 29 2018

1hr 19mins

Play

Rank #13: 6 Simple Ways To Stick To Your Goals This Year That Don’t Involve Willpower (TPS281)

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In today’s episode, we’ll be covering 6 strategies for how to stick to your goals this year and even if you lose momentum, we’ll give you practical tips for picking it back up. We know that this is going to be an awesome year for you, and we want to give you the tools to make that happen!

Get Podcast Updates

Do you want to get an email with show notes each time a podcast goes live? Then let us know where to send the updates by entering your first name and email.

Cheat Sheet:

  • The top 3 productivity resources of the year so far [1:46]
  • Who this episode is for and what it will help you accomplish in the new year [3:25]
  • Get real with your goals: do you know what you’re getting into? [6:45]
  • Why Thanh recommends aiming for only one goal at a time [12:32]
  • How to break down your goal into actionable steps [23:11]
  • How to create rituals that will support your goal and habits that can make them stronger [30:41]
  • The many different ways to track how you are doing with your new goals [37:24]
  • How setting a regular review process can keep you on track for success [42:13]

Links:

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Jan 06 2020

48mins

Play

Rank #14: Productive Morning Rituals [Audio]

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Download Audio

Right-click and save file as: Productive Morning Rituals

[audio:http://www.asianefficiency.com/audio/asianefficiency-morning-rituals.mp3]

Transcript

Aaron: You are listening to a podcast from AsianEfficiency.com. I’m Aaron.

Thanh: I’m Thanh.

Aaron: And today we are going to be talking about productive morning rituals. So what is a morning ritual? A morning ritual describes what you do from the time that you wake up until the point where you start your day, whether that’s at work or elsewhere. It’s basically your default autopilot way to start every single day. Now the word ritual I guess has certain connotations to it, and if this was the corporate world, we would probably call this a morning routine or morning process. But in our personal lives, the word ritual tends to fit better. It also comes from the book, The Power of Full Engagement, by Jim Loeher and Tony Schwartz, where aptly they coin the term rituals to describe this morning routine that we go through.

Thanh: So why is this important? The important thing about morning rituals is that they put you in autopilot mode once you have those going on for you. Just like, you don’t have to think when you brush your teeth. If you have a morning ritual you have done too many times, then you really don’t have to think about them every time you wake up because they become a part of you. Now the thing is, to get a new morning ritual, you have to do them every single day for at least 30 days. So, if you want to wake up earlier every single morning, guess what? You will have to do that at least for 30 consecutive days.

Aaron: Yea, it is basically designed to get you from your grumpy-I-just-woke-up state, to extremely productive without too much effort and too much thought. The obvious point is that it makes you more productive. The less obvious point is that it paces you for the rest of the day. It gives you enough energy and puts you in the zone until about at least mid afternoon, and it avoids that early morning crash that a lot of people have.

Thanh: Yes, and when you really think about it, if you have a morning ritual that puts you in a good state, in a good mood every single morning, well guess what?, the rest of the day is going to be so much easier to go through. Like if you have mornings where it is up and down a lot — so you wake up sometimes and you’re not really in the mood to do things, some days you wake up all happy and you are like on top of the world, sometimes you’re in the middle. The reality is, those effects of how you wake up are compounding throughout the whole day. So you wake up all upset, you’re all angry, then by putting on your slippers, if they don’t go on right away, then you get upset even more. If you brush your teeth and you’re out of toothpaste, you get even more angry. That compounding effect will have negative results throughout the whole day. So, by having a morning ritual where every single day you wake up and you go through this process where you make yourself feel good, you go through things that do good things for your body, then the rest of the day is going to be so much easier.

Aaron: Alright, to kick us off, we’re going to walk through our morning rituals, just to give you guys an idea of what they look like.

Thanh: So my ritual is as soon as I wake up I drink one bottle of water. The reason behind this is that, when we go to sleep, I sleep about 7 to 7-1/2 hours a day, so my body goes through 7-1/2 hours without any water. So I get really dehydrated when I wake up. Our body consists mostly of water, so you always want to make sure that as soon as you wake up you drink a lot of water. Now the next thing I do is, I do 10 pushups. The reason I do this, and this may sound crazy, is because when I do those 10 pushups I wake myself up. I get the blood flowing through my body. I can literally roll out of bed and then do 10 pushups and then feel wide awake. I also go to the gym, I do those on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. Now if I go to the gym, then my breakfast will be different than on days when I don’t go to the gym. So when I do go to the gym, I like to eat like a protein rich breakfast, a little bit of carbs and usually I eat some fruit before I head out. Now on days when I don’t go to the gym, what I like to do instead is read on my iPad or Kindle and get some reading done, maybe watch some TED Talks, just kind of like give myself a little bit of information. I like to do this because I always like getting new information, learning things about what’s happening in the world, educate myself a little bit more and read about things that I enjoy. Another thing I like to do then, is when I eat breakfast, I catch up on Facebook. Because when I eat breakfast, there’s not that much focus that I need to have. So if you want to do multitasking make sure that when you multitask that you do an activity that doesn’t require much focus or brainpower. So that’s why I like eating breakfast over Facebook. Then another thing I like to do is a little bit of meditation. Meditation may sound complicated or woo-woo, but it’s really not. All you have to do is sit down straight, make sure that you close your eyes and all you do is try to focus on your breathing. So try to see when you exhale, when you inhale, and focus on the rhythm. Do that for at least about 8 minutes every single day. Now when you first start off doing this, it may feel really crazy, it may feel really weird to you because, this happened to me too, when the first time I did it, my mind went just haywire, it went crazy. All these thoughts come up – I have to do this today– tomorrow I have to do that–oh, I’m supposed to go on this date–oh, I have to get this work done… Where you want to get at is, after you do this so many times, you’ll get to a point where your mind is really calm and there’s no thoughts going. When you reach that point, that’s when you know that you are meditating. You want to do that every single day so that you clear your mind and then start your day. So after I meditate, what I do is I go into the bathroom, take a shower and get changed, get ready. Once I’m all ready that’s when I go to my task manager and see – Okay, what’s ahead of me today?, What do I need to get done today? Before I head out, I usually like to sync my gadgets. I’ll have my iPhone, my Mac, my iPad and Kindle all synched up. Once that is done, then that’s when I start my day.

Aaron: Yea, actually, I’m on a pretty similar morning ritual. I start out by drinking a half liter of water, that’s 16 ounces if you live in North America. Then use the washroom and as opposed to Thanh, I actually like to write in my journal before I get my body moving. The main reason for this is before I go to sleep at night, I’ll usually give my brain a problem to solve or something to think about and whatever my immediate thoughts are when I’m waking up, I’m kind of still half asleep/half awake, and I usually get all those down on paper first. What I then do, is I take a look at my goals every single day, and I also look at my task list so I know what I have to do for the day ahead. I then like to review affirmations and these don’t really have to be heavy, hard core self help affirmations, they’re just certain things I like to remind myself of and certain questions I like to ask myself every single morning. The reason for this being that reality is compounding, the more you think about something, the more it actually becomes reality. And then do a tiny bit of stretching just to remind my body that yes, I am awake and I am getting on with the rest of my day. I’ll check my Facebook and my email for about 10 minutes and then I’ll have breakfast, at which time I usually either listen to audio books or watch a short 15 to 20 minute TED Talk. Then, I’ll get changed and it’s time to start my day.

So, the thing about morning rituals is that there are some pretty common elements to all productive morning rituals. The first one is that you absolutely must drink water when you wake up. Thanh already said you’re sleeping for 7 to 9 hours, or at least you should be. And when you wake up you’re dehydrated and you need to replenish the fluids in your body. So the first thing is to always drink water when you wake up. Use the bathroom, that’s pretty self-explanatory. Having a good breakfast is also an essential part of productive morning rituals. Now, we’re not nutritional experts so you have to double check this and get your own advice, but as a general rule having a variety of foods and having lighter foods is usually better than having a heavy meal in the morning. By lighter foods, I have fruit, I have whole grain cereals, and blended smoothies. Now, I live in Asia where a lot of people in the morning will have something really heavy like fried noodles or rice and chicken or something. I don’t know, I have a feeling that that actually correlates to statistical data where work activity is actually lower in Asia. It might have something to do with it, might not. But I have found that when I eat something light, something that digests quickly, I can get on with the rest of my day a lot easier.

Another common element of productive morning rituals is reviewing your goals and your day ahead. Now, if you have a task manager or a task list, this makes it extremely easy. You just take a glance at it, you mentally map out in your mind what it is you are going to do that day and then you actually get on with the rest of your day and start doing it.

Another common element is checking your email or your Facebook or your social media networks. Now, if at all possible, you want to delay this until you’ve done the most important task of your day. One reason to check first would be if it’s critical to your business. By this we mean if you happen to run servers and data centers where every single minute counts, yes, check your email and our Facebook. Now we like to check our email and Facebook before we start our day. The reason we do this is that we’re pretty good at minimizing the amount of time that we spend on it, and we usually clear out everything in about 10 minutes. We know that after 10 minutes it’s not going to drag on into 30, then 40 and eventually hours.

Thanh: Now see, common mistakes with productive morning rituals are a lot of them are too long for most people. What you want to make sure of is that your morning ritual is long enough to get you started to put yourself in a good mood, get yourself into a state where you know it is going to be a good day and you are going to get work done. So a 4 hour morning ritual is way too long, whereas 10 minutes is way too short. So from our experience, it takes about 1 hour, 2 hours max, to get a good morning ritual going on. Now this will depend, if you like exercising in the morning, you go to the gym a lot, then obviously your morning ritual is probably going to be around 2 hours. If you don’t work out on the day, then your morning ritual will probably be around an hour or so.

Another one is when you skip and when you’re traveling. And this is a really big issue, because we both travel a lot for our work and for our side businesses, so it’s really easy to get sidetracked. Because a lot of times you don’t have the things around you that you are comfortable with and you’re in a new environment or our things are at home, so it is really easy to get sidetracked and skip your morning ritual. But that’s not the path you want to go. You want to make sure that when you’re traveling you always do your morning ritual, no matter what happens.

Aaron: Yea, I mean, I just got on a 24 hour flight here to Las Vegas, and when I got up this morning, I went through my usual one hour morning ritual. Something related to that is, if you’ve had a big night out the day before, if you’ve been out partying, it doesn’t matter what time you wake up, do your morning ritual. Whether you wake up at 6am or 2pm, it’s something you want to do every day. The main reason for one, is that it’s a habit and if you break that habit, it becomes a lot harder to continue it into the future. Now, the big and most common mistake with morning rituals is not sticking to it. We know that it takes 30 days to really form a habit in our minds, at which point it becomes automatic and reality starts to compound. So, when you’re starting out with your productive morning ritual, you want to make sure that you do it for 30 days to begin with, after which it becomes second nature to you and it’s just something you do when you get up every morning.

So to take away from this, how do you go about making your own productive morning ritual? Well, the first thing you want to do is you want to take out a blank piece of paper or a text program on your computer and use the framework that we have just given you. You know that every morning you have to drink water, you have to use the washroom, you have to have a good breakfast, you should review your goals and tasks, and at some point you have to check your email and your social networks. Using this, start building your productive morning ritual. Work out what pieces make you go from groggy to awake in the morning and build them into your morning ritual. And, by all means comment on this on this article, send us an email, send us a message on twitter, let us know how it goes. Let us know if you find things that you feel should be part of every single morning ritual.

Thanh: Thanks for listening to this audio podcast on Productive Morning Rituals by Thanh and Aaron from AsianEfficiency.com.

Do you want to see our Rituals System? We have a free workshop that shows you how you can build good habits and stick to them with our 4-Step Rituals System. Click here to register for the next available workshop – it’s completely free.

Feb 21 2011

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Rank #15: Why Time Management Doesn’t Work & Why You Should Focus on Energy Instead (TPS142)

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Ever wonder why some people seem to get so much more done than others? We all have the same 24 hours in a day, but some people are much more productive and the secret to this next-level productivity is not traditional time management but actually energy management. Energy management is a force multiplier for how productive you are in the time you have available to you, and in this episode Brooks and Mike dive deep into why energy management is the real key to high achievement and how to do it effectively. They walk through different types of energy that need to be managed, and what you can do to maximize each one. Do you find that you often can’t muster up the energy to focus on an important task? Then you don’t want to miss this episode.

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Cheat Sheet

  • Why energy management is more important than time management [3:12]
  • The four pieces of the energy pyramid presented in The Power of Full Engagement [6:40]
  • Why getting enough sleep is so important (and why you’re probably not getting as much as you should) [8:07]
  • How to track your sleep cycles to maximize the quality and quantity of your sleep [11:15]
  • How blue light causes your body to stay awake and why NightShift and f.lux are so important in getting enough sleep [15:41]
  • Why regular exercise will decrease the amount of sleep you need and help you have more energy during the day [19:11]
  • How walking every day can boost your energy levels [22:07]
  • The power of productive meditation and how to do it correctly [24:15]
  • How eating healthy can exponentially increase your energy and productivity [26:04]
  • The emotional impact that positive and negative emotions have on your energy levels [28:51]
  • Ways to give your brain a break to have more mental energy [35:08]
  • Why going back and forth between being fully engaged and strategically unengaged is so effective [38:01]
  • Why going back to your “Why” and your foundational vision can help keep you motivated [38:49]
  • 6 Things you can do right now to increase your energy [43:50]
  • How to establish rituals that will help you have more energy throughout the day [46:54]
  • Why giving to others translates into a higher quality of life and more energy [50:58]

Links

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

May 08 2017

56mins

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Rank #16: Atomic Habits: 4 Laws for Changing Your Identity & Living the Life You Want w/ James Clear (TPS217)

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Do you have trouble getting your habits to stick? Or maybe you have trouble breaking bad habits that keep you from realizing your full potential? Either way, you won’t want to miss today’s episode with James Clear, the author of Atomic Habits and creator of the Habits Academy. James’ writing combines ideas from a wide range of disciplines including biology, neuroscience, psychology, and philosophy, and is focused on how we can create better habits, make better decisions, and live better lives. James joins me today to talk about his new books, Atomic Habits, which is available on October 16th. We talk about why habits are so important to James, the key difference between goals and systems, and why identity-based habits are better than outcome-based habits. We dive into the 4 Laws of Behavior Change, talk about why “how long” is the wrong question to ask when building habits, and James explains what to do when your habits break down.

Thanks to LinkedIn for supporting The Productivity Show. For $50 off of your first job post on LinkedIn Jobs, go to LinkedIn.com/TPS.

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Cheat Sheet

  • Why habits are so important to James Clear [2:15]
  • Why he believes habits are better for creating progress than  goals [5:47]
  • Outcome-based habits vs identity-based habits [9:59]
  • Why genes can tell you where to work hard [18:38]
  • Four laws for behavior change [20:47]
  • The inversion of the four laws for habits that you want to break [27:47]
  • A simple formula for creating habits [33:09]
  • Three different groups that we tend to imitate habits from [39:05]
  • Decisive moments where you make the choice to change your habit or not [44:43]
  • How to get back into a habit after you break the chain [50:58]

Links

Connect with James Clear

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Oct 15 2018

56mins

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Rank #17: TPS83: How to Plan Your Week w/ Kendra Wright

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Zack chats with Kendra Wright about her awesome strategy for planning her week. This strategy will change the way you think about your calendar, helping you to fit in self-care and work and feel fulfilled during your week but not over-worked.

Cheat Sheet

  • Why Kendra’s way of planning her week is awesome and how you can apply it yourself
  • One easy method to help you remember more of your life and make the weeks stop flying by
  • The new priorities in Kendra’s life
  • How to build a bad-ass life without burning out
  • Ways you can actually make more money by doing less
  • How and why you should build self-care into your calendar
  • The benefits that come from setting a weekly appointment to plan your week with yourself
  • The 3 key zones of your life that you should assess during your weekly meeting
  • Step-by-step instructions to help you map out your week
  • Why the best thing you can do for your business is to take care of yourself first
  • How to fit fun events into your schedule so you don’t miss out the things you really want to do
  • How to recover when things go wrong in your calendar

Links

Contest Winners

  • Grand prize: ProteusFactor
  • Second prize: danielwroberson
  • Third prize: fitnowork, jcp543, Dsker42, robertjtighe, Thomastsai92

Because we only have your iTunes name, please email us at podcast@asianefficiency.com to claim your prize. Note that additional verification may be required.

Connect with Kendra Wright

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Sticher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Mar 21 2016

35mins

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Rank #18: 5 Ways to Apply the 80/20 Rule To Free Up 2+ Hours A Week (TPS118)

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The 80/20 is an important concept, one that is often appreciated but also relatively difficult to find practical applications for in your own life. In this episode, you’re going to learn the framework for implementing the 80/20 in all areas of your life and work. The 5 levels laid out by our guest Tim Francis will help you take action using the 80/20 rule and significantly change your personal and professional life.

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Cheat Sheet

  • How you can apply the 80/20 rule in an actionable way and see results in every part of your life
  • What the 5 levels of 80/20 are and how they will change your future if you implement them correctly
  • How Warren Buffet personally uses the 80/20 rule and how the majority of his success can be traced back to a few key decisions
  • Key questions you can ask yourself to take action on the 80/20 rule
  • How the Asian Efficiency team uses the Kolbe test to work more efficiently and effectively
  • How the 80/20 rule applies to learning new skills
  • How to use the right tools and ask yourself the appropriate questions when growing your business
  • The value of having mastermind groups and community to enlarge your thinking
  • Why the personal level (Level 1) of the 80/20 rule impacts all the other levels
  • Why personal habits and rituals are are foundational for your success

Links

Connect with Tim Francis

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Sticher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Nov 21 2016

43mins

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Rank #19: Intentional Attention: How Small Decisions Can Bring You to Your Ideal Future (TPS184)

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Do you find yourself being pulled in too many directions? In this episode, Thanh and Mike talk about how your attention determines your future and why a simple mindset shift to regain control of your attention can provide stability and direction for all areas of your life. We talk about how being careless about how you spend your attention results in a condition called “attention slavery” and share some strategies to help you escape it. If you feel overwhelmed by everything or like you just can’t keep up, this episode is for you.

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Cheat Sheet

  • Tactical tips for directing your attention that can provide immediate focus [1:52]
  • Why scheduling focused time for being offline can be beneficial to your productivity [5:30]
  • How to get focused work done in an open office plan [8:12]
  • Advice for short bursts of focus [16:39]
  • How to focus your attention on the tasks that really matter [21:06]
  • What “flow” is and how to get into it on a consistent basis [30:17]
  • Why former social media executives are recognizing the adverse effects of social media platforms [36:11]
  • How to use social media intentionally [41:06]
  • How to start regaining your attention [46:17]
  • The many advantages from tracking your time [52:41]
  • How to develop mindfulness [54:18]
  • Ways to decide what is not important to focus your time on [59:46]
  • Personal stories from Mike and Thanh on how they became focused on their tasks [1:04:55]
  • Why it’s important to associate yourself with the right people [1:07:57]

Links

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Feb 26 2018

1hr 14mins

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Rank #20: Change Your Mind, Change Your Life: How a Growth Mindset Leads You to Your Ideal Future (TPS171)

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Ever wonder why some people are so successful and others seem to really struggle? More than likely, it has little to do with their talent or ability and more to do with their growth mindset. In this episode, Thanh and Mike talk about the importance of developing a growth mindset and how it can translate into personal and professional success. They explain what a growth mindset looks like and how it’s different from a fixed mindset, how you can spot a growth mindset in several different areas, and share some tips about how you can change from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset yourself. If you find it difficult to take action on things that you know are important but you struggle to find motivation, or you find yourself giving in to procrastination more often than you’d like, then this episode is for you.

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Do you want to get an email with shownotes each time a podcast goes live? Then let us know where to send the updates by entering your first name and email.

Cheat Sheet

  • How today’s topic came from an #AskTPS question on Twitter [1:10]
  • The difference between a growth mindset and a fixed mindset [3:23]
  • The surprising benefits that come from having a growth mindset [9:50]
  • What the fixed mindset does to you personally [15:12]
  • How to tell if you might have a fixed mindset in certain areas of your life [21:15]
  • How you can have  a growth mindset in some areas of your life while having a fixed mindset in other areas [27:59]
  • 3 quick tips to identify if a business partner, friend, or romantic partner has a growth mindset [29:30]
  • The impact of truly mastering a skill, and why it’s about how you put in the time and not just the amount of time [36:01]
  • Examples of using a growth mindset for your relationships [44:33]
  • Using a growth mindset for finances [51:15]
  • The top areas where Thanh and Mike have a growth mindset [55:14]
  • Where Thanh and Mike find themselves struggling with a fixed mindset [57:48]
  • 5 tips to change from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset [1:01:38]
  • Why you should collect “reference experiences” in order to make yourself believe that your goals are possible [1:07:24]
  • Dojo member Jon talks about why he joined and how he’s changed since joining [1:12:42]

Links

If you enjoyed this episode, subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Overcast, PocketCast or your favorite podcast player. It’s easy, you’ll get new episodes automatically, and it also helps the show gain exposure. You can also leave a review! Here’s how.

Nov 27 2017

1hr 17mins

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