Why People Fail – Productivity Exercises

Started reading this awesome book last week – “Why People Fail: The 16 Obstacles to Success” by Siimon (no that’s not a typo) Reynolds.

In my opinion, productivity is all about doing the tasks that get you what you want and chucking all the extraneous crap. An impossible feat, if you don’t know what you want. The first part of Why People Fail is dedicated to exercises aimed at helping you figure out your goals, followed by methods to streamline your life in support of those goals. The following drills are meant to clarify your thinking.

Life Purpose – what is the primary reason you get up in the morning?

Write three possible life purposes that should inspire you and make you more effective.

Job Purpose – write down the three most important tasks you have at work and put them in order of priority. This should help you clarify what action items really need to be done towards your purpose, and what items are BS.

Weekly Purpose – every Sunday, write down the one or two most important tasks that you’d like to accomplish the following week

Ideal Person Clarity – write down what type of person you’d really like to be; choose five character traits you wish you possessed. Then, act the part. (A little weird, but you get the picture).

I went through all of these exercises last week – a bit personal to share, but super thought provoking. My favorite is the weekly purpose – on Sunday evenings, I write down two tasks (in my Moleskine, natch) that I want to do either every day the following week (to get into a habit) or to complete by the end of the week. This week I’m bringing my lunch every day and starting my workout in our sexy home gym (aka: the garage). Last week I went out for a 30 minute walk in the sun every day and did the reworked the monthly budget. Good stuff.

If you’re interested, I highly recommend the book. You can also check out his blog at http://www.siimonreynolds.com/siimon’s-blog.aspx

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One thought on “Why People Fail – Productivity Exercises

  1. Rachel Lawley says:

    Going through perspective and goal / priority setting myself. Thank you – great timing! A polarity coach helped me with similar weekly goal-setting: think realistically what must be accomplished this week in each area of your responsibilities and wants, put them in your calendar and go for it. For me, it helped not only thinking about what truly HAD to be done that week and then being ok with not doing the other things – knowing they’d be on another week’s list…or not at all! Also helped me feel better about turning some things down after seeing how it really wasn’t realistic for me to try to commit to some things. Keep up the great goal work!

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