The counter-intuitive way to get freedom

July 2, 2020 in Life, Mindset, Productivity

It’s rare that I read an article and think – I wish I had written that. That’s exactly how I felt after reading Wise People Have Rules For Themselves by David Cain.

I agree with every single word.

It sounds odd to say ‘discipline equals freedom’ – but it does. It’s counter-intuitive. When you set rules for yourself that you know are good for you, it’s actually liberating. It’s a huge relief. You no longer have to flip flop between things that work, somewhat work and don’t work. You lean in towards what works for you. You live a life on your terms.

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Five things that have helped me be effective at work in lockdown

June 25, 2020 in Focus, Life, Productivity, Work

Lockdown has been very challenging for me. It’s taken me much longer to adapt to working from home than I would have expected.

I’ve struggled with a lot of things – video call fatigue, work / life balance, focus and motivation – to name a few. If I’m honest, I lost my edge at times. I feel like I’ve had the least impact I’ve had over a three month period for a long time.

That said, over the last few weeks I’m getting into a much better place with it. I’ve been reflecting on what’s helped the most, and five things came to mind:

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Two proven ways to get important work done

November 5, 2019 in Focus, Life, Productivity, Work

It might be the most important thing you ever have to figure out for yourself. How do you get important work done?

It’s the key to living a full, productive, happy and balanced life. When you don’t have this figured out, you end up doing a lot of things, but actually achieving very little.

I’ve settled on a couple of strategies for helping me get important work done. Before I share them, I want to talk about The Eisenhower Matrix. It’s one of the most powerful frameworks I’ve found to think about where you spend your time.

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Three reasons morning routines don’t work (and how to stick to one you love)

August 30, 2018 in Focus, Life, Mindset, Productivity

Waking early and making good use of the early hours is the biggest life hack there is — no exception. It’s a competitive advantage that almost feels like you’re cheating. You’re getting stuff done whilst most other people are sleeping like babies!

But, it can be hard to find one you like doing and will stick to (these are linked).

In my experience, there are three things that are at the root of not sticking to a morning routine:

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Why weekly planning is so important (and how to do it)

July 9, 2018 in Focus, Life, Productivity

I was reminded this morning how powerful and important it is to block out time to plan the week ahead.

Over the last 5 weeks, I’ve fallen out of my weekly planning habit. I spent three weeks in Cyprus, so it wasn’t needed. It’s funny how going to the beach, swimming, eating and drinking beer seem to flow with each other nicely 😉

The following two weeks were unusual for me. I had a lot of days where I was looking after my daughter Fearne. I also had a bunch of other social commitments. I decided it wasn’t worth planning those two weeks out. Better to see the two weeks out and then get back to normal.

Today I’m getting back to normal. The first thing I did was sit down and go through my weekly planning process.

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How to be less busy, and have more impact

May 25, 2018 in Focus, Life, Productivity

I’ve been through a major shift in how I plan my days and get things done over the last few years.

I used to think a good day was getting as many things done as possible. I felt productive as I ploughed through my lists. But now I realise, I was actually just busy. I could get lots of things done, but my impact was inconsistent.

A better way of putting it is, I didn’t get the return on investment for the amount of time I put in, or the number of things I completed. Continue reading »