Hey there creator,
Hope you are in the midst of an ass-kicking weekend feeling radiantly alive.
This week's email is a bit geared towards productivity and how best to stay focused when we work and tackle our goals. 💪
Productivity seems to be the new black in the online self-development world as more and more creators are churning out content on how to get more done, beating distraction, and tools for optimizing the way we work.
If you ask me a lot of it falls under the category of productivity porn. 😻
I mean how many pretty apps and systems does one person need to remind themselves of all the stuff they need to do. 🤷🏻♂️
Productivity tips and tricks do have value to help us do more and arrive at the destination we want to get to in the future, but this week I was reminded of an idea known as the REVERSE GAP. 👈
So much of our time and attention is focused on the opposite, the FORWARD GAP, the time period between where we are now and where we want to be in the future.
Aspirations like the next job with the cooler sounding title, having more customers and clients, buying that new house, furthering our expertise and skills so we can create more opportunity for ourselves.
Sometimes we forget what we’ve already achieved.
Sometimes all the ways we've grown are so blatantly obvious, yet we don't acknowledge and bask in it. ☀️
I know for me at times I am so focused on moving the needle on my present-day goals that I lose sight of how far I have come.
When this happens, it's easy to fall into the trap of measuring where I'm at now against some future version of myself.
That's why this week I did a short exercise of acknowledging and honoring my REVERSE GAP by reflecting on the person I was 2 years ago at this very time.
I encourage you to do the same.
In March of 2019, what was your life like? What were you doing? How did you feel about life?
Write down all the ways you have grown, all the fun and exciting things you experienced and witnessed, all the struggles you overcame, and of course all of your accomplishments.
Let it all sink in. You might amaze yourself with how much you have transformed and grown.
Any time I get anxious or feel worried about the future or the success of a particular goal, I try to recall things in my reverse gap.
I find this to be one of the quickest ways to give yourself an instant mood boost and raise your vibration. 😃
And if you do this exercise with playful sincerity, I promise you it will cause you to feel more motivated, fulfilled, and inspired to tackle your goals than any productivity tip or app out there.
Hit reply and let me know about your reverse gap.
Enjoy the newsletter and have a great week!
7 Habits to Avoid to Become Highly Productive
Anthony J. Yeung | 7 minutes
1. Focusing on Minor Details, Not Results
Productivity is about how much you create and deliver; not just finishing busywork. Don’t over-focus on minor details like having the perfect calendar. Measure your results and your work will improve.
2. Checking Devices First Thing in the Morning
88% of people check their phone within the first hour of their day. Consuming useless information like social media, checking email, and responding to messages to start your day puts you in a state of reaction. Now, you're flooded with stressors and urgent tasks before you even have a chance to work on your own goals (or put on your pants).
3. Allowing Distractions During Work
Whether it’s emails, messages, or calls, we switch tasks or get interrupted every 3 minutes and 5 seconds. Yet no matter how hard you try, if you get distracted that often, you’ll struggle to focus because we are all terrible at multitasking. Also, organize your workspace — a cluttered or disorganized workspace can negatively affect your cognition, stress, and emotions.
4. Working Until Exhaustion
While there are times you have to work late hours, it’s not a long-term recipe for success. And if you constantly work until you’re exhausted, those last few hours of work probably won’t be good anyway. Highly productive people don’t work until there’s nothing left in the tank: They stop long before they get to that point.
And keep in mind, research shows:
5. Working Without Priorities
Dwight D. Eisenhower famously said, “What is important is seldom urgent and what is urgent is seldom important.” Not everything on your to-do list is equally important. Highly productive people focus their energy on the most important tasks—not just the urgent ones—which allows them to get the most results from each day.
6. “Finding” Time to Do Things
Don’t find time for the things that are important to you; MAKE TIME. Usually, things we need to "find" time for likely never end up getting done. Set it in your calendar and build your schedule around it. What are the essential things that you often postpone?
7. Failing to Set Boundaries
Bragging about working 12-hour days isn’t a sign of productivity; it’s a sign of poor boundaries. Many people take on all kinds of projects that won’t move the needle in their life and only drain themselves of time and energy. Avoid saying “yes” to every request and overwhelming yourself with unimportant things. Set boundaries on your time and learn how to say “no” politely so you can say “yes” to what really matters.
To Get Unstuck, Think With Your Hands 🙌
Anna Gilbertson | 5 minutes
We often equate an “open computer” with “working.” So each day, what do many of us do: turn on our computer and get to "work". The problem is, at times we can find ourselves thinking in circles, returning to our inboxes, or feeling totally stuck.
In this awesome article, the author dives into how the computer is a sad tool for human ideation, one that pales in comparison to the infinite workspace of the real, three-dimensional world. She makes the case (backed by research and science), that to come up with better ideas and engage with our thoughts more deeply, we need to work with our hands.
Here are a few key insights from the article:
👉 Moving your body gets your brain ready to think.
👉 Computers, devices of all kinds, and everything digital = distraction. By going analog greatly removes distraction and increases focus.
👉 Engaging all your senses has mental benefits that staring at a screen can't compare to.
👉 Think with your hands by using pen and paper, writing on index cards, drawing, and using the 3D space and objects around you.
// Quick Boost of Consciousness ⚡ ::
One of the books I am currently reading is The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle and the other day I read something that stayed with me which I think has relevance to this week's theme of productivity.
If it is the quality of your consciousness at this moment that determines your future, then what is it that determines the quality of your consciousness?
Your degree of presence.
So the only place where true change can occur is the Now!
📹 How to Buy Bitcoin for Beginners in 2021
Ali Abdaal | 22 minutes
Some readers have shown interest in wanting to learn more about financial investments and getting started with cryptocurrency, me included. 🙋♂️
Trying to understand crypto has always made my head spin. And if there is one piece of financial advice I live by is Warren Buffet's mantra of never invest in something you don't understand. So as result I have always been hesitant to invest in bitcoin.
My friend and YouTube instructor, Ali created this easy-to-follow video on how crypto and bitcoin work, the controversies behind it, and how you can get started with it.
// Interesting Finds :: 🎲
Thanks for reading.
If you have any questions, feedback, or want to share some of your own insights, feel free to hit reply and let me know. I read and reply to every email.
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As Always, Keep Creating,
Anthony V. Lombardo
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