Sunday, October 19, 2014

WOW Productivity
Written by Darren Hardy

Talk to almost anyone today, and they complain about having “no time. "It is obviously a boast disguised as a complaint when you hear this.

Our most frequent response when we hear someone say how crazy-busy they are: “That’s a good problem to have” or even “Better than the opposite.” And it isn’t ER nurses, doctors or people with three different minimum wage jobs who say they are “crazy-busy.” It is people like you and me who are lamenting our own self-imposed busyness.

Being busy isn’t the problem; it’s what we are so busy with.

Face it, just because you are busy doesn’t mean you are achieving your most important goals. In fact it is probably the exact opposite. Am I right?

You spend every day running around trying to get things done but when the day ends you stop and look at what you have accomplished and somehow it isn’t as much as you hoped or even thought you did.

Why? Because being busy doesn’t equal being productive.

Being busy doesn’t equal being productive.

So why do we get stuck with mind-numbing busyness instead of productivity? I have talked with countless high-profile CEOs and millionaires, heck even billionaires. Not one of them has complained to me about how busy they are.

The reason? Because while they are definitely busy they know how to take that busy and transform it into WOW productivity.

They know their limits. They hone their skills and delegate the rest.

They are focused on getting the right things done, not getting everything done.

They know from experience what they need to do or not do in order to have WOW productivity and continue to build their million- or billion-dollar empires.

And in this week’s post on WOW Productivity, I will be sharing some of the top productivity tips by some of the most productive movers and shakers of our society.

First of all Arianna Huffington, president and editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post Media group, said she slept her way to the top—literally.

In an interview Arianna said, “My single most effective trick for getting things done is to stop doing what I’m doing and get some sleep.” She went on to say, “Look at how careful we are about recharging our smartphones, as opposed to our brains, our spirits, and our bodies.”

To keep this discipline Arianna suggests scheduling your sleep. “Certain things are not negotiable,” she said. “My sleep is not negotiable. It’s like an appointment.” Look at it as a really important, unmovable, do-not-disturb seven- to eight-hour-long meeting.

Google cofounder Larry Page takes a hands-on approach to his productivity. He fired his assistant. Not because she wasn’t getting the job done, but because she was the “gatekeeper.”

He found himself in too many unwanted meetings. He said in an interview, “Most people aren’t willing to ask me if they want to meet with me. They’re happy to ask an assistant.”

So now anyone who wants his attention has to approach Page directly, giving him the power to control his own schedule.

Guess what happened? Yeah, people stopped making dumb requests on his time.

Richard Branson’s number one secret to greater productivity is to keep fit and exercise.

Branson claims that working out gives him at least four additional hours of productive time each day. Exercise increases energy levels, helps you sleep better and improves your focus.

Branson gets up early to run and work out. Branson is now 63 years old. If he can do it, what’s our excuse, right?

Sir Branson isn’t the only one to use the early morning hours to increase his productivity. Disney CEO Robert Iger wakes up at 4:30 a.m. every morning. He uses the time for a little bit of quiet time to himself and to recharge his batteries in preparation for the busy day ahead.

What time do you get up? Good thing to check in on, BUT don’t forget Arianna’s tip—get your sleep. It just requires you to shut off the TV, computer, iPad, X-Box, YouTube, Netflix, or whatever is keeping you from getting to bed early enough.

Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook, says her best productivity practice is keeping a handwritten journal. According to Miguel Helft at Fortune, “Sheryl’s days are a flurry of meetings that she runs with the help of a spiral-bound notebook. On it she keeps lists of discussion points and action items.

“She crosses them off one by one and once every item on a page is checked she rips the page off and moves to the next. If every item is done 10 minutes into an hour-long meeting, the meeting is over.”

Sheryl is also well known for leaving the office every day at 5:30 p.m. to get home to be with her kids.

The Midas touch of billionaires Warren Buffett and Larry Ellison’s lives can also be described as the One Touch Rule. They will open an email, letter or voicemail and immediately respond, delete or forward it. This way it is taken care of and there is no need to waste time by coming back to it again later.

I also have my own One Touch Rule, and I call it my 4P Process:

One P is for Produce. Act on it now.
The second P is for Pass—pass it on to someone else.
The third P is Purge. Throw it away.

This is my favorite P: 99.9% of what comes at me or is sent to me is NOT important to my main focus, goals and priorities. I have gotten better and better at just purging everything, and quickly.

The last P is for those things my Catholic guilt or that back of the mind nagging that says, ‘someday, maybe you’ll get to this or maybe you might need this.’ Then I put it into Purgatory.

I have purgatory repositories for everything—emails, materials, files, clothes, everything. If I don’t have the chutzpa and courage to purge something right away, I put it into the purgatory repository, then, if I don’t go looking for it in 6 months, I throw the whole repository away without even looking through it again. If I didn’t go looking for it, obviously I didn’t need it and there is now an excellent chance I never will.

Hopefully that is helpful to you to: Produce, Pass, Purge or put in Purgatory.

Right now you should be asking yourself, “If that is what millionaires and billionaires do to be productive, why can’t I do that.”

You can! You can be every bit just as productive as Warren Buffett, Larry Page, Richard Branson, and Arianna Huffington.

Their “secrets” to productivity aren’t secrets at all. They are all simple things that we can do in our lives even if we aren’t billionaires running 300 companies like Richard Branson.

Being productive is a choice. It won’t just happen naturally because your to-do list gets longer and longer. You have to work at it, hone your productivity muscle and make the right choices for your goals and ambitions.

Being productive is a choice.

If you enjoyed learning the productivity secrets from some of the best, don’t forget to tell all your overachiever friends, family and colleagues to up their WOW productivity.

Content republished with permission from Darren Hardy, Publisher of SUCCESS magazine. For more great insights, tips and strategies on success and achievement go to http://DarrenHardy.SUCCESS.com. More about Darren Hardy can be found at: http://DarrenHardy.SUCCESS.com/About.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

What Constitutes A Good Life?
Written by Jim Rohn

The ultimate expression of life is not a paycheck. The ultimate expression of life is not a Mercedes. The ultimate expression of life is not a million dollars or a bank account or a home.

Here's the ultimate expression of life in my opinion, and that is living a good life. Here's what we must ask constantly, "What for me would be a good life?" And you have to keep going over and over the list.

A list including areas such as spirituality, economics, health, relationships and recreation. What would constitute a good life? I've got a short list.

1) Productivity. You won't be happy if you don't produce. The game of life is not rest. We must rest, but only long enough to gather strength to get back to productivity. What's the reason for the seasons and the seeds, the soil and the sunshine, the rain and the miracle of life? It's to see what you can do with it. To try your hand, other people have tried their hand; here's what they did. You try your hand to see what you can do. So part of life is productivity.

2) Good friends. Friendship is probably the greatest support system in the world. Don't deny yourself the time to develop this support system. Nothing can match it. It's extraordinary in its benefit. Friends are those wonderful people who know all about you and still like you.

A few years ago I lost one of my dearest friends. He died at age 53 - heart attack. David is gone, but he was one of my very special friends. I used to say of David that if I was stuck in a foreign jail somewhere accused unduly and if they would allow me one phone call, I would call David. Why? He would come and get me. That's a friend. Somebody who would come and get you.

Now we've all got casual friends. And if you called them they would say, "Hey, if you get back, call me we'll have a party." So you've got to have both, real friends and casual friends.

3) Your culture. Your language, your music, the ceremonies, the traditions, the dress. All of that is so vitally important that you must keep it alive. In fact it is the uniqueness of all of us that when blended together brings vitality, energy, power, influence, uniqueness and rightness to the world.

4) Spirituality. It helps to form the foundation of the family that builds the nation. And make sure you study, practice and teach. Don't be careless about the spiritual part of your nature; it's what makes us who we are, different from animal, dogs, cats, birds and mice. Spirituality.

5) Don't miss anything. My parents taught me not to miss anything. Don't miss the game. Don't miss the performance, don't miss the movie, don't miss the show, don't miss the dance. Go to everything you possibly can. Buy a ticket to everything you possibly can. Go see everything and experience all you possibly can. This has served me so well to this day.

Just before my father died at age 93 if you were to call him at 10:30 or 11:00 at night, he wouldn't be home. He was at the rodeo, he was watching the kids play softball, he was listening to the concert, he was at church, he was somewhere every night.

Live a vital life. Here's one of the reasons why. If you live well, you will earn well. If you live well it will show in your face, it will show in the texture of your voice. There will be something unique and magical about you if you live well. It will infuse not only your personal life but also your business life. And it will give you a vitality nothing else can give.

6) Your family and the inner circle. Invest in them and they'll invest in you. Inspire them and they'll inspire you. With your inner circle take care of the details. When my father was still alive, I used to call him when I traveled. He'd have breakfast most every morning with the farmers. Little place called The Decoy Inn out in the country where we lived in Southwest Idaho.

So Papa would go there and have breakfast and I'd call him just to give him a special day. Now if I was in Israel I'd have to get up in the middle of the night, but it only took five minutes, ten minutes. So I'd call Papa and they'd bring him the phone. I'd say, "Papa I'm in Israel." He'd say, "Israel! Son, how are things in Israel?" He'd talk real loud so everybody could hear - my son's calling me from Israel. I'd say, "Papa last night they gave me a reception on the rooftop underneath the stars overlooking the Mediterranean." He'd say, "Son, a reception on the rooftop underneath the stars overlooking the Mediterranean." Now everybody knows the story. It only took 5 - 10 minutes, but what a special day for my father, age 93.

If a father walks out of the house and he can still feel his daughter's kiss on his face all day, he's a powerful man. If a husband walks out of the house and he can still feel the imprint of his wife's arms around his body he's invincible all day. It's the special stuff with the inner circle that makes you strong and powerful and influential. So don't miss that opportunity.

Here's the greatest value. The prophet said, "There are many virtues and values, but here's the greatest, one person caring for another." There is no greater value than love. Better to live in a tent on the beach with someone you love than to live in a mansion by yourself. One person caring for another, that's one of life's greatest expressions. So make sure in your busy day to remember the true purpose and the reasons you do what you do. May you truly live the kind of life that will bring the fruit and rewards that you desire.

Jim Rohn, America's Foremost Business Philosopher, reprinted with permission from Jim Rohn International © 2014. As a world-renowned author and success expert, Jim Rohn touched millions of lives during his 46-year career as a motivational speaker and messenger of positive life change. For more information on Jim and his popular personal achievement resources or to subscribe to the weekly Jim Rohn Newsletter, visit www.JimRohn.com.