A Bit of Wisdom from “The 4-Hour Workweek” | Brand-Yourself.com Blog

Are you feeling burned out, lacking energy and less efficient than you used to be? Has your workday become a practice in managing dozens of distractions while trying to find time to accomplish your priorities? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then you need to read “The 4-Hour Workweek” by Timothy Ferriss. In this book, Ferriss gives readers step-by-step instructions on how to join the “New Rich.” The New Rich work less while maintaining their previous levels of income and find other meaningful activities (i.e. family, online business ventures, travel and volunteerism) to fill their newly-created free time.

I could write pages about this book’s principles, how they can be applied and the steps necessary to create this lifestyle and join the New Rich. But you should read this stuff for yourself. So instead, I will quickly highlight a few of the principles that Ferriss asserts can make you more productive in your workday, by eliminating unnecessary demands and distractions.

Productivity vs. “Being Busy”

Oftentimes people (myself included) say, “I need to keep myself busy, if I’m not I’ll go nuts.” A fundamental question you must ask yourself is, are you “busy” with tasks that aren’t important? And how often do these tasks eat up time in your day? Ferriss cites Pareto’s Law, which states that “80% of results come from 20% of the effort and time” when he first changed his work habits. Ferriss applied this law at a time when he was working 15-hour days, seven days a week. He recognized that of his 120 wholesale customers, a mere 5 were bringing in 95% of the revenue. After shifting his energy to these top-performing customers, Ferriss increased his monthly income two-fold in only four weeks and cut his hours worked from 80 to 15. Although this may seem like an extreme example, hundreds of others have adopted these principles and seen immediate and marked results.

Managing Your Daily Distractions

What do you really DO while sitting at your desk? Surf Facebook and check out the latest activity on your newsfeed? Check your personal email account, while monitoring your Twitter feed and LinkedIn connections? Take these distractions that consume parts of your day and add them up. I have, and I’m astounded at how much I peruse these social networking sites and other websites that, at the end of the day, add very little value to my work.  Ferriss suggests using free time-tracking software called RescueTime. RescueTime alerts users when they spend more than an allotted time on a website that one assigns as “time wasters.” A simple note attached to your computer screen with a message saying, “Are you inventing things to avoid the important?” is another method of reminding you to stay on task.

“Batching” Your Time Consuming Activities

Studies have been conducted across the board to show that lapses in productivity occur when workers multitask, especially when they allow interruptions to remove them from a particularly large task.  An individual can take up to 45 minutes to resume working on a major task once he/she has been interrupted. How can this be resolved? The first step is to begin batching. Set specific times in your day to check email and turn off the auto-responders that interrupt you every few minutes. Check sales at the beginning and end of the day, but most importantly, earmark times for this activity. To finish, estimate how much time you are saving by batching similar tasks and calculate how much you have earned based on your hourly rate (how much you value your time).

These are just a few of the principles that you can apply to your daily life to make you more efficient and productive in less time. In an age where texting and checking emails with clients present in the room has become commonplace and often acceptable, now is the time to reclaim your focus and your etiquette by following these basic principles. And by the way, read this book! You’ll soon recognize why it has become a #1 New York Times bestseller and been published in 35 countries.

Posted via email from AndyWergedal