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We live in a hyperconnected, always available, instant everything world. From social media to our email notifications, the internet has amplified our collective level of distraction and inability to focus on a task for a long time. Multitasking is one of our favorite words, but we are busy doing nothing. You can make more money, but you can not make more time. We all get the same amount of time daily, the billionaire and the poor; how we use it is what makes all the difference. Once we use our time, it is gone forever; it is always ticking, moving. The ability to guard and use your time effectively is crucial in navigating the roller coaster of life.

“The best approach to dealing with these interruptions is to accept them and treat them in a gentle way.”

One of the best time management tools that I have found to be very helpful is the Pomodoro Technique developed by Francesco Cirillo, which he developed in 1987 as a time management hack for passing his sociology exam in college.

The Pomodoro Technique is a time management method developed by Francesco Cirillo in the late 1980s. The technique uses a timer to break down work into intervals, traditionally 25 minutes in length, separated by short breaks. Each interval is known as a Pomodoro, from the Italian word for ‘tomato’, after the tomato-shaped kitchen timer that Cirillo used as a university student.

The Pomodoro Technique was created with the aim of using time as a valuable ally to accomplish what we want to do the way we want to do it and to empower us to improve our work or study progress continuously.

According to Francesco Cirillo in his book, The Pomodoro Technique: The Acclaimed Time-Management System That Has Transformed How We Work, the goals of the Pomodoro Technique includes the following:

  • Alleviate anxiety linked to becoming
  • Enhance focus and concentration by cutting down on interruptions
  • Increase awareness of one’s decisions
  • Boost motivation and keep it constant
  • Bolster the determination to achieve one’s goals
  • Refine the estimation process in both qualitative and quantitative terms
  • Improve one’s work or study process
  • Strengthen one’s determination to keep applying oneself in complex situations

The Stages of the Pomodoro Technique

The process underlying the Pomodoro Technique consists of five stages:

  1. To implement the Pomodoro Technique, all you need is the following:
  2. A Pomodoro: a kitchen timer
  3. A To Do Today Sheet filled in at the start of each day with the following:
  4. A heading with place, date, and author.
  5. A list of the things to do during the day in order of priority.
  6. A section labeled “Unplanned & Urgent Activities” in which any unexpected tasks that have to be dealt with should be listed as they come up. These activities could modify the day’s plan.

An Activity Inventory Sheet consisting of the following:
A heading with the name of the author.
A number of lines in which various activities are written down as they come up. At the end of the day, the ones that have been completed are checked off.
A Records Sheet. This is the set of raw data needed to produce pertinent reports and graphics. Depending on the objectives, this contains different sets of boxes. Normally, this sheet would include the date, the description, and the number of Pomodoros of effort needed to accomplish a task. This sheet is updated at least once a day, usually at the end of the day.

How the Pomodoro Technique Works

OBJECTIVE I:

FIND OUT HOW MUCH EFFORT AN ACTIVITY REQUIRES

The traditional Pomodoro is 30 minutes long: 25 minutes of work plus a 5-minute break. At the beginning of each day, choose the tasks you want to tackle from the Activity Inventory Sheet, prioritize them, and write them down in the To Do Today Sheet.

START THE FIRST POMODORO

Set the Pomodoro for 25 minutes and start the first activity on the To Do Today Sheet. Whoever is using the Pomodoro, whether one person or more, should always be able to see clearly how much time is left.

A Pomodoro can’t be interrupted: It marks 25 minutes of pure work. A Pomodoro can’t be split up: There is no such thing as half a Pomodoro or a quarter of a Pomodoro. The atomic unit of time is a Pomodoro. (Rule: A Pomodoro is indivisible.) If a Pomodoro is interrupted by someone or something, that Pomodoro should be considered void, as if it had never been set; then you should make a fresh start with a new Pomodoro.

When the Pomodoro rings, mark an “X” next to the activity you’ve been working on and take a break for 3 to 5 minutes. When the Pomodoro rings, this signals that the current activity is definitely (though temporarily) finished. You’re not allowed to keep on working “for just a few more minutes” even if you’re convinced that in those few minutes you could complete the task at hand.

The 3- to 5-minute break gives you the time you need to disconnect from your work. This allows your mind to assimilate what’s been learned in the last 25 minutes and also gives you a chance to do something good for your health, which will help you do your best during the next Pomodoro. During this break you can stand up and walk around the room, have a drink of water, or fantasize about where you’ll go on your next vacation. You can do deep breathing or stretching exercises. If you work with other people, you can swap a joke or two.

EVERY FOUR POMODOROS

Every four Pomodoros, stop the activity you’re working on and take a longer break, from 15 to 30 minutes.

The 15- to 30-minute break provides an ideal opportunity to tidy your desk, take a trip to the coffee machine, listen to voice mail, check incoming e-mails, or simply rest and do breathing exercises or take a walk. The important thing is not to do anything complex; otherwise your mind won’t be able to reorganize and integrate what you’ve learned, and as a result you won’t be able to give the next Pomodoro your best effort. Obviously, during this break you need to stop thinking about what you did during the last Pomodoros.

COMPLETING AN ACTIVITY

Keep on working, Pomodoro after Pomodoro, until the task is finished and then cross it out on the To Do Today Sheet

Once the current activity has been completed, move on to the next one on the list and then the next, taking breaks after every Pomodoro and every four Pomodoros.

 As pomodoros are completed, they are recorded, adding to a sense of accomplishment and providing raw data for subsequent self-observation and improvement.

Recording

With the Pomodoro Technique, it’s not essential to track the start time for an activity (or for every Pomodoro). What’s important is to track the number of Pomodoros actually completed: the real effort. This point is the key to understanding the Pomodoro Technique. Since tracking is done at least once a day, remembering and reconstructing the start times for activities isn’t difficult; in fact, this kind of recall is a beneficial mental exercise.

A useful technique for remembering start times is to do a rundown of the day beginning with the most recent activity and moving backward to the first one.

A useful technique for remembering start times is to do a rundown of the day beginning with the most recent activity and moving backward to the first one.

Top 7 Pomodoro Timer Apps

  1. Pomodor Web based Pomodoro timer
  2. Forest Pomodor Mobile App
  3. Toggl Track
  4. Francesco Cirillo’s Pomodoro App
  5. Tomato Timers – Focus Hub – Study Timer 
  6. PomoFocus
  7. Tomato Timer

All the Best in your quest to get Better. Don’t Settle: Live with Passion.

The Karpman drama triangle was developed by psychiatrist and Transactional Analysis teacher Dr. Stephen B. Karpma. He was a student of Canadian-born psychiatrist  Eric Berne, M.D., the creator of transactional analysis psychology and author of Games People Play. The Drama Triangle is a model of human interaction that maps a type of destructive interaction that can occur among people in conflict.

The triangle of actors in the drama are persecutors, victims, and rescuers.

“I have two kinds of problems, the urgent and the important. The urgent are not important, and the important are never urgent.” – Dwight D. Eisenhower

Dwight D. Eisenhower was the 34th president of the United States from 1953 to 1961. Prior to becoming president, Eisenhower was a  five-star General of the United States Army. He served as the Supreme Commander of the Allied Expeditionary Force in Europe during World War II and he was also responsible for planning and supervising the invasion of North Africa (Operation Torch) and Germany (Battle of Normandy).

As president, Eisenhower launched programs and initiatives that led to the development and execution of projects such as the Interstate Highway System in the United States, NASA’s exploration of space, the Atomic Energy Act, DARPA which led to the launch of the Internet. Eisenhower was a productive man who served as the Army Chief of Staff (1945–1948), as president of Columbia University (1948–1953), and as the first Supreme Commander of NATO (1951–1952) before becoming the president of the United States from 1953 to 1961. He also had time for golfing, oil painting, poker, and reading.

In a 1954 speech addressed to the Second Assembly of the World Council of Churches, at the campus of Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. Einsenhower said:

Now, my friends of this convocation, there is another thing we can hope to learn from your being with us. I illustrate it by quoting the statement of a former college president, and I can understand the reason for his speaking as he did. I am sure President Miller can.

This President said, “I have two kinds of problems, the urgent and the important. The urgent are not important, and the important are never urgent.”

Now this, I think, represents a dilemma of modern man. Your being here can help place the important before us, and perhaps even give the important the touch of urgency. And you can strengthen our faith that men of goodwill, working together, can solve the problems confronting them.

The Eisenhower Matrix was popularized by Author Stephen R.Covey in his book, First Things First and Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. In his books, Covey describes a time management framework for prioritizing work that is aimed at long-term goals, at the expense of tasks that appear to be urgent, but are in fact less important. In First Things First, Covey argues that they are three generations of time-management: first-generation task lists, second-generation personal organizers with deadlines, and third-generation values clarification as incorporated in the Franklin Planner.

By using the Eisenhower Decision Principle, every task is evaluated using the criteria important/unimportant and urgent/not urgent, and then placed in according quadrants in an Eisenhower Matrix. The 2×2 matrix classifies tasks as urgent and non-urgent on one axis, and important or non-important on the other axis.

The tasks in the quadrants are then handled as follows.

  1. Important/Urgent quadrant tasks are done immediately and personally e.g. finishing a client project, Picking up your sick kid from school, crises, deadlines.
  2. Important/Not Urgent quadrant tasks are activities that get you closer to your goals but without a set deadline e.g. personal development, relationships, exercising, planning, recreation
  3. Unimportant/Urgent quadrant tasks are delegated, e.g. interruptions, responding to some emails meetings, activities.
  4. Unimportant/Not Urgent quadrant tasks are eliminated e.g. time wasters, watching TV, eating junk food pleasant activities, trivia.

Using the Eisenhower Matrix

“The wisdom of life consists in the elimination of non-essentials.” —Lin Yutang.

As Henry David Thoreau once quipped, “It is not enough to be busy. So are the ants. The question is: What are we busy about?”. Thoreau was right; most of us stay on our social media timelines endlessly scrolling and marinating ourselves with other people’s carefully curated capsules of their lives. We equate motion for movement, activity for accomplishment, busyness for progress; hence we do not know the difference between urgent and important tasks.

Knowing how to distinguish what is important from the urgent is not the easiest for many of us because we do not have our priorities right. We pick up every phone call, check our emails every 15 minutes, pick up our phones continuously for the dopamine rush derived from the notifications on our phone; we get busy instead of getting important things done. The key to using the Eisenhower Matrix effectively is to know and re-order your priorities.

The Eisenhower Matrix in Action

Important/Urgent – Do
Important/Not Urgent – Schedule
Unimportant/Urgent – Delegate
Unimportant/Not Urgent – Eliminate

Your time here on earth is minimal; using your time effectively is what makes the difference between the successful and unsuccessful, the rich and the poor, the intelligent and the ignorant, etc. The key is to know what is really important at every moment, whether to do, schedule, delegate, or eliminate a task from your itinerary.

All the Best in your quest to get Better. Don’t Settle: Live with Passion.

The wisdom of life consists in the elimination of nonessentials. – Lin Yutang

The Pareto Principle (also known as the 80/20 rule, law of the vital few), named after Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto who noted that 80% of consequences comes from 20% of the causes (the “vital few). Pareto made the observation at the University of Lausanne in 1896. In his first work Cours d’économie politique, he showed that approximately 80% of the land in Italy was owned by 20% of the population. The top 20% of the population had 80% of the wealth in Italy.

The Pareto Principle, states that 20 percent of the things you do account for 80 percent of the value of what you accomplish. This means that 80 percent of what you do is worth 20 percent or less of the value of what you accomplish.

“You could leave life right now. Let that determine what you do and say and think.” – Marcus Aurelius

It is not a matter of If; It is a matter of when. We are all going to DIE, sooner or later. Contemplating your eventual mortality is one of the greatest grounding mechanisms I have found to reorder my priorities daily. In the face of death, we focus on the important things in life. Memento Mori is Latin for ‘remember that you have to DIE,’ it is an artistic or symbolic reminder of the inevitability of death. Our time here is limited, life is short, but we can make the best use of our time here by constantly reminding ourselves of its inevitability.

 “The trouble is, you think you have time.” – Buddha

The average life expectancy in the developed world is around 80+ years which is around 30,000 days. If we sleep 8 hours a day, that means we would sleep 1/3rd of our life: 10,000 days, work and commuting would be around 3,500 days. Work and sleep alone would take close to half of our lifetime. The challenge is that we all think we still have time, we procrastinate, and we tell ourselves ‘Someday I’ll,” and the someday turns to never.

“If it is popular, it is wrong” — Oscar Wilde

Social Psychologist Irving Janis coined the term groupthink, which happens when in-group pressures lead to a deterioration in mental efficiency, poor testing of reality, and lax moral
judgment (Janis, 1982).

Groupthink is a psychological phenomenon that occurs within a group of people. The desire for harmony or conformity in the group results in an irrational or dysfunctional decision-making outcome.

It tends to occur in highly cohesive groups in which the group members’ desire for consensus becomes more important than evaluating problems and solutions realistically. In his 1972 Book, Victims of Groupthink, Janis expounded his theory of groupthink using the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941 and the Bay of Pigs disaster (the failed invasion of Castro’s Cuba in 1961) as case studies.

Janis writes:

“I use the term ‘groupthink’ as a quick and easy way to refer to a mode of thinking that people engage in when they are deeply involved in a cohesive in-group, when the members’ strivings for unanimity over-ride their motivation to realistically appraise alternative courses of action.
Groupthink is a term of the same order as the words in the Newspeak vocabulary George Orwell presents in his dismaying 1984 – a vocabulary with terms such as ‘doublethink’ and ‘crimethink’. By putting groupthink with those Orwellian words, I realise that groupthink takes on an Orwellian connotation. The invidiousness is intentional: groupthink refers to a deterioration of mental efficiency, reality testing and moral judgment.

“You might as well eat shit, fifty billion flies can’t be wrong.”

“There are two types of people—those who wait to talk and those who listen.” –Anonymous

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In the Dolby® surround sound of our daily lives, we all have to find our own mute button. “Since a painting has no soundtrack, the title character at the center of ‘The Listener’ has found the best way to shut off all the noise in the visual cacophony around him by closing his eyes,” Christensen says. “Listening to his still, small, inner voice, he remains centered without being overcome. We can all find peace in this busy world, but sometimes need to be reminded that we are in charge of our destiny and each of us has the ability to focus without being pushed and pulled as victims.

The characters found in the colorful ‘noise’ around the listener in this painting take many forms including politicians, mothers-in-law, musicians, and famous artists . . . can you find Picasso? Through it all, our listener ignores the noise in favor of his own personal tranquility.”

All the Best in your quest to get Better. Don’t Settle: Live with Passion.

American essayist and critic William Deresiewicz whose book  Excellent Sheep: The Miseducation of the American Elite and the Way to a Meaningful Life, is based in part on his essays “The Disadvantages of an Elite Education” and “Solitude and Leadership.”. Deresiewicz delivered the speech to the plebe class at the United States Military Academy at West Point in October 2009. In the speech, he noted that solitude is the very essence of leadership. He shared some great insights on bureaucracy, Leadership, multitasking, focus, concentration, social media, and solitude,

True leadership means being able to think for yourself and act on your convictions.

Death ground is a psychological phenomenon that goes well beyond the battlefield: it is any set of circumstances in which you feel enclosed and without options.

Many of us think we have all the time in the world, and we tell ourselves that Someday I’ll, we continuously settle for less than we can become. We go to jobs we hate, stay in toxic relationships, tolerate bad behavior from our family and friends, delay starting the business or taking the vacation, delay living, procrastinate, fail to follow our dreams, and always have a plan B. One of the challenges of having a plan B is that you are likely to go for it until you burn all the bridges; you would always want to go for the path of least resistance. One of the principles that could help with relentlessly executing your goals is the Death Ground Strategy. It involves having a sense of urgency like you are on the war front, and you need to be victorious, or you sink.

For example, in the movie 300, a fictionalized retelling of the Battle of Thermopylae within the Persian Wars. The first battle scene of the movie shows Leonidas, the king of Sparta, motivating his warriors to defend the “Hot Gates,” hence blocking the invading Persian forces of Xerxes into the narrow pass between the rocks and the sea. The Spartans still won the battle with 300 soldiers compared to the over 300,000 invading Persian forces.

Death is nothing, but to live defeated is to die every day. – NAPOLEON BONAPARTE

I don’t believe people are looking for the meaning of life as much as they are looking for the experience of being alive. – Joseph Campbell

In the early 20th century, while studying world mythology, Joseph Campbell discovered a pattern hidden in every story ever told and he called it “the heroes journey”. The heroes journey, or the monomyth, is the common template of stories that involve a hero who goes on an adventure, is victorious in a decisive crisis and comes home changed or transformed.

Joseph Campbell studied the classical myth traditions, native American mythology. He fell in love with it when he was a kid. He also studied Greek mythology, Arthurian legend, he dissected and really diagrammed all of our stories. He compared philosophies, mythic stories of the whole world. All myths, all movies all novels, all romances He found this one story within all the stories, that we can relate to, no matter where you come from. He recognized that in spite of all the different stories we seem to be telling, there is really only one. And He called it the Hero’s Journey.

The snake that cannot shed its skin must perish.” Frederick Nietzsche

The major difference between the highly successful and not too successful is the way they use their time. We all get 24 hours daily; some of us mindlessly scroll our social media timeline while some people use their time to invest in their business, spending time with their family, and focusing on what really matters to them. Time Management is mostly a myth; what we can really do is to re-order our priorities and focus on what would bring maximum output to us in the long run.

Here are some great books that could help you maximize your productivity and re-order your priorities:

  1. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change by Stephen R.Covey (9/10)

    The seven habits of highly effective people is one of my favourite productivity book of all time. Covey present great ideas and strategies for becoming an effective and productive individual such as Become proactive, begin with the end in mid, putting first things first, seek first to understand, before you are understood, sharpening the saw, synergizing, think win/win among other strategies.

“Habit is the intersection of knowledge (what to do), skill (how to do), and desire (want to do).”

The book is one of the best known and best selling business book of all time with over 30 million copies sold worldwide, It is a classic book that contains lots of strategies and insight for personal change and effectiveness.

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2. The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results by Gary Keller (9/10)

In ONE Thing, American Author and Real Estate Entrepreneur Gary Keller argue that prioritizing a single task is the major key to getting things done and achieving extraordinary results. He writes: No matter how success is measured, personal or professional, only the ability to dismiss distractions and concentrate on your ONE Thing stands between you and your goals.

What’s the ONE Thing I can do such that by doing it everything else will be easier or unnecessary?

You have only so much time and energy, so when you spread yourself out, you end up spread thin. You want your achievements to add up, but that actually takes subtraction, not addition. You need to be doing fewer things for more effect instead of doing more things with side effects.


The book discusses the benefits of prioritizing a single task, and it also provides examples of how to engage in those tasks with a singular focus.

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3. Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World by Cal Newport (9/10)

Deep Work: Professional activities performed in a state of distraction-free concentration that push your cognitive capabilities to their limit. These efforts create new value, improve your skill, and are hard to replicate.

Deep Work is one of the most impactful book have ever read as I made lots of changes to how I work and manage my priorities after reading the book. The Deep work hypothesis: The ability to perform deep work is becoming increasingly rare at exactly the same time it is becoming increasingly valuable in our economy. As a consequence, the few who cultivate this skill, and then make it the core of their working life, will thrive.

deep-work

Author and professor Cal Newport argue that cultivating a deep work ethic will produce massive benefits in almost any profession. He also presents a rigorous training regimen, presented as a series of four “rules” for transforming your mind and habits to support this skill. He presents ideas on how we can do less shallow work and more deep work, deepening our focus and productivity.

Shallow Work: Noncognitively demanding, logistical-style tasks, often performed while distracted. These efforts tend to not create much new value in the world and are easy to replicate.

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4. Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity by David Allen (8/10)

In Getting Things Done, American productivity consultant David Allen introduces the readers to a time management tool he called The Getting Things Done (GTD) method. The GTD is based on the idea of moving all items of interest, relevant information, issues, tasks, and projects out of the mind by recording them externally and then breaking them into actionable work items. This allows attention to be focused on taking action on tasks, instead of recalling them.

“If you don’t pay appropriate attention to what has your attention, it will take more of your attention than it deserves.”

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5.  Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones by James Clear.

In Atomic Habits, Author James Clear shares the step-by-step plan for building better habits, why tiny atomic changes can make a big difference in forming good and breaking bad habits. The book is rich with insights, examples, anecdotes, and real-life scenarios for building good habit and breaking bad habits.

Habits are like the atoms of our lives. Each one is a fundamental unit that contributes to your overall improvement. At first, these tiny routines seem insignificant, but soon they build on each other and fuel bigger wins that multiply to a degree that far outweighs the cost of their initial investment.

atomic-habits

Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.― Carl Jung

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6. Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown

In Essentialism, Greg McKeown draws on experience and insight from working with the leaders of the most innovative companies in the world to show how to achieve the disciplined pursuit of less. The book goes in-depth on how to pursue less and concentrate on what really matters relentlessly. As an Essentialist, you need to focus on the few really essential things, think of the trade-offs, say no more often, and EXECUTE.

“Besides the noble art of getting things done, there is the noble art of leaving things undone. The wisdom of life consists in the elimination of non-essentials.” – Lin Yutang

essentialism

The way of the Essentialist means living by design, not by default. Instead of making choices reactively, the Essentialist deliberately distinguishes the vital few from the trivial many, eliminates the nonessentials, and then removes obstacles so the essential things have clear, smooth passage. In other words, Essentialism is a disciplined, systematic approach for determining where our highest point of contribution lies, then making execution of those things almost effortless.

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7. The Effective Executive: The Definitive Guide to Getting the Right Things Done by Peter Drucker

In Effective Executive, Management guru Peter Drucker shares some very great insights for becoming an effective executive such as organizing and managing your time, choosing your contribution to the organization, amplifying your strengths, setting the right priorities, and making effective decisions.

The Effective Executive: they concentrate on one task, if at all possible. After picking what needs to be done, set priorities and stick to them.

effective-executive-book-summary

The core theme of the effective executive book is managing oneself for effectiveness. That one can truly manage other people is by no means adequately proven. But one can always manage oneself. Indeed, executives who do not manage themselves for effectiveness cannot possibly expect to manage their associates and subordinates

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8. The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy

The Compound Effect is based on the principle that decisions shape your destiny. Little, everyday decisions will either take you to the life you desire or to disaster by default.  Darren shares insights gleaned from interviewing and interacting with highly successful people. The Compound Effect is the principle of reaping huge rewards from a series of small, smart choices.

Small, Smart Choices + Consistency + Time = RADICAL DIFFERENCE

Nobody intends to become obese, go through bankruptcy, or get a divorce, but often (if not always) those consequences are the result of a series of small, poor choices.

The premise of the book is that Success is the progressive realization of a worthwhile goal. Succeeding in any field requires putting in the work, and seeing the compounding results over time. Success requires putting in the work daily and consistently over a long time, small, seemingly insignificant steps completed consistently over time will create a radical difference.

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9. The 80/20 Principle: The Secret to Achieving More with Less by Richard Koch

The 80/20 Principle shows how we can achieve much more with much less effort, time, and resources, simply by identifying and focusing our efforts on the 20 percent that really counts.

80 percent of all our results in business and in life stem from a mere 20 percent of our efforts.

The unspoken corollary to the 80/20 principle is that little of what we spend our time on actually counts. But by concentrating on those things that do, we can unlock the enormous potential of the magic 20 percent, and transform our effectiveness in our jobs, our careers, our businesses, and our lives.

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10.  Smarter Faster Better: The Transformative Power of Real Productivity by Charles Duhigg.

At the core of Smarter Faster Better are eight key concepts—from motivation and goal setting to focus and decision making—that explain why some people and companies get so much done. Drawing on the latest findings in neuroscience, psychology, and behavioral economics—as well as the experiences of CEOs, educational reformers, four-star generals, FBI agents, airplane pilots, and Broadway songwriters—the book posits that the most productive people, companies, and organizations don’t merely act differently.

Smarter Faster Better

“Productivity is about recognizing choices that other people often overlook. It’s about making certain decisions in certain ways.”

Theme: If you can become more motivated, more focused, better at setting goals and making good decisions, then you’re a long way down the path to becoming more productive.

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11. 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think by Laura Vanderkam

In 168 hours, there is easily time to sleep 8 hours a night (56 hours per week) and work 50 hours a week, if you desire. That adds up to 106 hours, leaving 62 hours per week for other things.

Laura Vanderkam, in her book 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think, shares some great insights on how we have more time than we think we do have and how our time can be maximized by focusing on our priorities. 168 Hours is the story of how some people manage to be fully engaged in their professional and personal lives. It is the story of how people take their careers to the next level while still nurturing their communities, families, and souls.

 The weekly 168-hour cycle is big enough to give a true picture of our lives. Years and decades are made up of a mosaic of repeating patterns of 168 hours. Yes, there is room for randomness, and the mosaic will evolve over time, but whether you pay attention to the pattern is still a choice.

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12. Eat That Frog!: 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less by Brian Tracy

There’s an old saying that if the first thing you do each morning is eat a live frog, you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing you’re done with the worst thing you’ll have to do all day. In Eat that Frog, Author Brian Tracy uses eat that frog as a metaphor for tackling our most challenging task first and in the process of overcoming procrastination and in the process getting things done.

“If you have to eat two frogs, eat the ugliest one first.” This is another way of saying that if you have two important tasks before you, start with the biggest, hardest, and most important task first.”.

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Honourable Mentions

All the Best in your quest to get Better. Don’t Settle: Live with Passion.

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In his illuminating book The Now Habit: A Strategic Program for Overcoming Procrastination and Enjoying Guilt-Free Play, Psychologist and Author Dr. Neil Fiore write about a time-planning/management tool he called “The Unschedule.” I found the tool to effectively deal with procrastination, re-ordering your priorities, and getting things done.

The Unschedule is a weekly calender of committed recreational activities that divides the week into manageable pieces with breaks, meals, scheduled socializing, and play. In addition, it’s a record of your productive, uninterrupted work. It provides producers with a prescheduled commitment to guilt-free time for recreation, plus a realistic look at the actual time available for work.

There is a great native American story between an old Cherokee and his grandson that is often attributed to the Cherokee, Lenape people, or an Eskimo fisherman. The story contains a great parable about the power of focus, mindset, and it is a great anecdote on how we can manage our thought, feelings, and action.

One evening, an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside us all. He said to his grandson:

“A fight is going on inside me,” he said to the boy. “It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil – he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.”

“Life is a kind of campaign. People have no idea what strength comes to one’s soul and spirit through a good fight.” – Gutzon Borglum (sculptor of Mount Rushmore)

John C. Bogle was the founder and chief executive of The Vanguard Group and is credited with creating the first index fund. In 1999, Fortune named Bogle as “one of the four investment giants of the 20th Century.”  alongside Warren BuffettPeter Lynch, and George Soros. In his book, Enough: True Measures of Money, Business, and Life, Bogle shares great insights on what it truly means to have “enough” in a world increasingly focused on status and score-keeping. He also shared his principles on Money, Business, Life, and Leadership.

On Leadership

“What, then, are the characteristics of good leadership and of good management? On that subject, I have (surprise!) strong opinions, most of them formed in the crucible of my own six decades of business experience, including four decades as a leader—nine years as chief executive of Wellington Management, 22 years as chief of Vanguard, and (if you will) now nine years running Vanguard’s admittedly tiny Bogle Financial Markets Research Center, with its crew of three plus me. So here I speak from my own broad, firsthand, and often hard-won experience.”

10 rules for building a great organization

Rule 1: Make Caring the Soul of the Organization

When I first spoke to our Vanguard crew about caring in 1989, I used these words: “Caring is a mutual affair, involving:

Coded Bias is an American documentary film directed by Shalini Kantayya that premiered at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival. The documentary includes contributions from notable Artificail Intelligence and Facial Recognition Researchers: Joy Buolamwini, Timnit Gebru, Cathy O’Neil, Deborah Raji, Zeynep Tufekci, Safiya Noble,  Meredith Broussard,  Virginia Eubanks, among others.

Coded Bias highlights our collective social misconception about Artificial Intelligence and Facial recognition. The documentary advocates for an urgent need for legislative protection through regulation and moderation.