Tips On Focusing, Prioritizing, And Avoiding Indiscriminate Constant Action (Breather Episode with Brad)

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I cite some great ideas from peak performance leaders like “4 Hour” author and podcast host Tim Ferriss, the late “7 Habits” author Stephen Covey, and “Good to Great” author Jim Collins. These topics have become of central importance to me lately, because I feel like the world is getting more distractible and hyperconnected every day. We are losing our collective attention span to our great detriment! I quote Ferriss about prioritizing starting your workday and avoiding “indiscriminate constant action.” Begin your day with fresh air and sunlight by taking a walk outside, then continue with productive action: sit down with a pen and paper and write a list of 3-5 things that are making you feel uncomfortable. Watch what comes up on that list – they’re likely to be the tasks you’ve been avoiding, the things that have the most chance of bringing up rejection and conflict into your day. But ask yourself this: if you accomplished only the tasks on this list – would you feel satisfied after? It’s all about letting the less important stuff slide, and making the decision to prioritize the things that you know must been done. This ties into the iconic 4 Quadrants from Stephen Covey, and the idea that you should spend most of your time in the planning, reflecting, and prioritizing mode instead of in the reactive, distracted mode. The 4 Quadrants are broken down like this:

1st Quadrant: Urgent + Important

2nd Quadrant: Urgent + Not Important

3rd Quadrant: Not Urgent + Not Important

4th Quadrant: Not Urgent + Important

Covey recommended spending most of your time in the 4th quadrant – this means planning, analyzing your to-do list, listing your priorities in order, and doing all the practical things you need to do to in order to get the most done – things that don’t seem urgent, but are actually integral to focus and productivity. Best-selling author Jim Collins is a great example of putting in the work into making sure you’re spending your time as efficiently as possible: he’s set a goal to spend half his working time in “creative productivity mode” and charts his time out on a spreadsheet everyday – talk about getting things done! He’s got the 4 Quadrants down and it certainly shows.

It’s all too easy to become numb to this state of constant hyperconnectivity, and this show will help you identify the ways in which you can avoid falling prey to this, and work with the reality of our highly distracting world to create behavioral patterns that best serve you, allowing you to focus and prioritize your daily life to your benefit.

TIMESTAMPS:

I talk about my cold therapy plunge and deep breathing. [03:18]

Distractibility and hyper-connectivity are hindering us all from productivity. [05:19]

Step back and get more rest. Be open to feedback. [08:03]

There is difference between efficacy, efficiency, and effectiveness. [09:59]

Start your day with some sort of physical exercise before you get to your screen. [11:52]

Next sit down with pencil and paper. [12:39]

Learn to use the Covey Quadrant. [13:43]

If you lose focus, a nap is a good idea. Or get up and move! [17:37]

Being busy is a form of laziness. [20:36]

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