It is well known that I am selfish and I like to write for myself.
And what I am writing is what I think I need to most hear in my own situation.
In essence it could be viewed as me advising myself.
Because we often know what to do but all the ideas are cluttered in our heads.
So if I write like a know it all.
It is because I have went and analyzed the concepts in my head so many times.
Over and over again.
To gain clarity.
And only then do I go to the world and state my view.
I believe there is enormous power in giving yourself advice.
If we just ask the right questions and stay open minded.
We can find the answers.
And it isn’t actually all that difficult.
You most of the time know what to do if you just open your mind to it and seek clarity.
And that is where personal journals can be really powerful.
That is why a lot of successful people do it.
It helps seeing patterns in life.
For me a pattern I have noticed lately:
Whatever work I have, it will fill the time allocated to it.
And that seems to be consistent, every time.
I can go and find assistants etc.
But I will always find a way to be busy.
That part seems to never change.
I’ve more and more come to realize.
Your input is not just the work you put in.
Input * efficiency = Results.
We know this from economics 101.
So knowing this. The way you do your work matters a lot.
Think about global competition.
A lot of people, Chinese, Japanese etc.
They can work 12 hours a day.
But, fortunately we live in a knowledge work society.
So it is not just how long and much you work. But how smart, how good is your efficiency.
And yes, on a certain level you should work a lot. I would never dispute that.
However what we traditionally think of as work, might not be the most efficient way to go about it.
Because you also need to make sure that there is no wasted activity and that the direction of your work is spot on. That you are working on the right direction and doing the right things.
And almost certainly there is going to be a lot of waste if you are doing 12 hour work days.
It is impossible to do your best work while being super intensely focused and smart about it.
That is when proactive recovery comes to play big time.
You have a choice: You could put the blinders on and just put your head down. Do a shitload of work like a typical small business owner. End up working 12 hours a day with around 50% waste.
You could work 7 hours really smartly. Aim to be as purposeful and planned as possible.
And instead of doing 12 hours with 50% productivity you could do 7 hours with 80% productivity.
The productivity is almost the same 6 hours of productive work versus 5,6 hours of productive work.
However one strategy is sustainable and will give you a lot better of a life.
Furthermore, if you use even part of these extra hours in active recovery.
You are well ahead of the grinders.
Taking off time will also make sure that you have time to be strategic and zoom out from the business. You will have time to really get clear on what you are trying to achieve.
So it is not about working ridiculous hours.
But its really about minimizing waste.
Still working but finding ways of doing everything just a bit smarter. With a purpose and aim.
You use your brain to escape hard labor.
You are the operator with intense realism. A general who sees the battlefield as it is.
One who is able to take advantage of opportunities and avoid the pitfalls.
In order to get to this point.
You have to start valuing inputs over outputs. And initially this will be difficult because these things will often be difficult to measure. Everybody can measure the amount of hours you put in but that is fools gold. Your goal should be the opposite, achieving as much as possible with minimum inputs.
Putting in your best work will be more and more important in the knowledge economy. We live in an environment where the perks go to the best. People don’t care about merely very good, they want and talk about only the best.
Look at the best athletes, CEOs, actors, consultants. There is huge wage gaps between the best and the tenth best in any position. The tenth best player in a football team is almost as good as the best player but he gets paid only around 20% of what the best gets paid.
Be less busy and a bit smarter about the way you do things.
Make it your purpose to show up with your best possible performance.
Fresh and super focused and clear on what you are going to do.
People don’t want the second best and neither should you.