An Avant Garde Productivity & Lifestyle Design Blog, written for unconventional coaches, corporate climbers & service-based entrepreneurs.
Do you have that one friend or colleague that seems to be running circles around everyone?
Every time you turn around they’ve hit yet another major milestone.
Wrote a book.
Discovered a cure for cancer.
Increased their revenue by 30%.
I’m being dramatic, but you get the picture.
This is about that friend who has their shit together.
They properly plan.
They have boundaries.
They get the RIGHT shit done at the RIGHT time for the RIGHT reasons.
Do you want to be able to say the same for yourself?
Try adopting some of their habits…
I’m not saying adopt their routines or schedules. We all are unique so the way you do what you do can and should be different, BUT you can adopt some of their daily principles and habits:
Well, I’m sorry to disappoint, but this is not what I was going to say. I don’t believe in a blanket statement, one-size-fits-all platitudes.
Whether this places them in the 5AM club is neither here nor there. The key here is they are not rolling out of bed and directly into someone else’s agenda.
They are giving themselves the time and space to fill up their cup (in whichever way works for them) before diving into other people’s emergencies and demands.
They’re not afraid or apologetic about being selfish with the first hour of their day.
2. Choosing to meditate, exercise, and eat at the most appropriate time for them.
I know quite a few productive people (including myself) who skip breakfast altogether. Again, not recommending you do the same. I’m simply pointing out that most Productive Bosses eat when their body is ready to eat, exercise at the time of day best for their rhythms, and reserves meditation for a time that’s most beneficial for them.
Point being, they do all of these things, yes, but it doesn’t always happen at the top of every day and that’s okay. Your productive friends understand the power of making sure their routines match their natural rhythms.
3. Scheduling their “to-do” items directly inside their calendars.
Many of your productive friends are not deciding the day of what their needle-moving tasks are going to be. They have likely set goals and targets for the month, broken those goals down into actionable tasks, and placed those tasks inside their calendar.
If they do review the day of or the night before, it’s likely to refresh their memory or move things around if any part of their schedule has shifted since setting the goals.
In other words, they knew what needed to be done before the day it was due arrived.
4. Breaking when necessary, but remaining in a flow state when the situation warrants it.
Maybe you’ve heard of the famous Pomodoro Technique which encourages people to work for 25 minutes and break for 5 minutes consecutively for 4 rounds, then take an extended 15 to 20-minute break and start again.
I’m going to let you in on a little secret…come closer….Your productive friends do not do this shit. They’d likely never get anything done if they did this.
Instead, most of them would rather remain in a flow state for an hour to 90 minutes and then take a break. I have yet to meet a high performing, productive boss who interrupts their flow state every 20 to 25 minutes. It’s nonsense.
5. Completing their most needle-moving task first which is not always the “hardest” task Brian Tracy coined the phrase “Eat That Frog” in his book of the same title.
He was saying when you wake up in the morning, you should complete your hardest, most difficult task first.
Let me just say this, I LOVE Brian. He’s my mentor! I’ve learned so much from him, but I respectfully disagree and I think your productive friends will too.
While it is important to complete your most important, needle-moving tasks first, those tasks are not ALWAYS the hardest or most difficult. In fact, I’ve experienced the opposite to be true. It’s the shallow tasks (the tasks outside of our zone of genius) that prove to be the hardest.
Our needle-moving tasks (the tasks WITHIN our zone of genius) are not only most important, but also easier than the shallow tasks. To respectfully disagree even further, the needle-moving, zone of genius tasks shouldn’t necessarily be completed first thing in the morning.
Instead, those tasks (which require lots of brain power and focus) should be completed at the time of day when your energy is at its peak! If that’s first thing in the morning for you, great! But, that’s not always the case for your productive friends. We’re all different.
I say all this to say, ignore all the cliché productivity advice you hear and start paying attention to the actions and principles your productive friends live by.
If you want to properly plan, establish boundaries, and get the RIGHT things done, at the RIGHT time, for the RIGHT reasons, in the RIGHT way for YOU, I highly recommend enrolling in CONQUER Your Chaos Crash Course where I walk you through the 7 steps to ruthlessly reclaiming your most precious commodities: Time, Energy, & Attention.
You’re one 8-week course away from becoming a Productive Boss just like your productive friends.
Are days, weeks, even months going by without you hitting your life and business goals?
Do you constantly feel like you’re in an “entrepreneurial rat race?”
Does it feel like everyone else’s business is running like a well-oiled machine while yours is #struggling ?
You know you have a message worth fighting for, a service worth getting paid for, a business that can reach great heights, but the proof has yet to be seen in the proverbial pudding.
You tell yourself:
“They have teams to help them! I’m running this business by myself.”
“I have a full-time job so that’s why I can’t get things done in my business.”
“I’m a spouse and a parent so my time is not my own.”
All of it is valid. These are reasons, not excuses… Right? At least that’s what you tell yourself, but the truth lies somewhere in the middle…
Your point is valid. You don’t have a team and so your capacity is limited-sure. BUT is it also possible that you are complicating your processes?
You are straddling entrepreneurship and corporate-sure. BUT is it also possible that you are not telling your time where to go when you’re not working your 9 to 5?
Yes, you wear multiple hats and others demand your T.E.A. BUT is it also possible that you’ve failed to establish strong, healthy, non-negotiable boundaries?
…Asking for a friend…
I’m not trying to minimize what you have on your plate. I’m trying to help you view your circumstances from a perspective where YOU have control.
We have blind spots when it comes to our business bottlenecks.
Yup…I said it.
We’re so close and so deep in our business and personal life that we can’t see clearly what’s holding us back.
If I had a quarter for every time one of my clients said
“OMGosh, I’ve never looked at that way, you’re so right…”
I’d be rich. Some of us are walking around in dire need of a Productivity Coach, but we misdiagnose our problems. The misdiagnoses leads us to buying software we don’t need, investing in courses and programs that aren’t a good fit, or wasting money on contractors that we are not yet ready to invest in.
The cycle goes on and on.
I can’t speak for ALL Productivity Coaches, but I define a Productivity Coach as someone who helps you establish customized routines, systems, and boundaries that help you NARROW YOUR FOCUS and get the RIGHT things done, at the RIGHT times, for the RIGHT reasons, in the RIGHT way for YOU and the season you’re in.
A Productivity Coach doesn’t force you to implement cookie-cutter, one-size fits all strategies.
No, no, no… A real Productivity Coach helps you cultivate self-awareness and use what you know about your personality, passions, and purpose to create tailor-made systems, routines, and strategies.
Take, for example, your morning routines.
A Productivity Coach shouldn’t just tell you, “Hey, do the ‘Miracle Morning’ by Hal Elrod everyday and you’ll be successful.”
Smh…that’s lazy AF.
A real Productivity Coach will have you examine your natural rhythms, discover what fills up your cup, and analyze your current schedule and create your own signature ideal morning. They will help you understand that one person’s ideal morning routine may not work for you and that’s OKAY.
What are your goals and vision?
A Productivity Coach can help you identify your yearly and monthly goals and ensure that you create tasks that help you close the gap between where you are now and where you want to be.
More importantly, they will make sure that your goals are strategic and relevant.
In addition to that, a Productivity Coach will help you set strong, healthy boundaries and create systems that help you sustain work-life harmony.
Aside from helping you reach financial goals, a Productivity Coach can also help you reclaim your most precious commodities: your time, your energy, AND your attention.
A great Productivity Coach is able to help you look at your life and business from a bird’s eye view and expose your blind spots. It’s the blind spots that cause the bottlenecks and hijacks your momentum. Being able to see your life and business from the outside looking in (especially from someone who has no skin in the game) is PRICELESS.
Having a Productivity Coach isn’t the same as asking a friend to hold you accountable. A Productivity Coach helps you outline a game plan for bringing your vision to fruition.
They help you close the gap between where you are now and where you want to be by strategizing and planning you next BOLD move. A great coach helps you STAY ready so you don’t have to get ready.
Bet you weren’t expecting this one, but it’s true.
A phenomenal productivity coach will help you identify which skills (within your industry) are profitable, rare, and necessary for you to cultivate.
How much time have you wasted cultivating skills that end up being useless in the marketplace? A Productivity Coach can help you choose the right books, podcasts, courses, and coaches so that you never experience buyer’s or learner’s remorse again.
You may not know this, but confidence is rooted in the promises we KEEP to ourselves. Goal are just promises we make to ourselves and every time we keep those promises we gain that much more confidence.
Think about how you felt the last time you said you would work out and you did or the last time you said you’d complete a project by a certain date and you crushed it with time to spare.
How did that make you feel?
Like a Bona Fide Boss, I’m sure. I say that to say, great Productivity Coaches help you maintain integrity and consistency, which in turn boosts your confidence through the roof.
Again, I can’t speak for ALL Productivity Coaches, but I can speak for myself! These definitely are the benefits of working with me inside my programs.
Speaking of programs, my flagship course: CONQUER Your Chaose Crash Course is what you need if you resonated with any part of this article. I am 1,000% confident that you will emerge 8 weeks from now with:
—> Clearly defined goals, vision, routines, & systems
—> bird’s eye perspective of what’s serving you and what’s not and the areas of your life and business that need attention.
—> Monthly productivity game plan for crushing the goals you set and moving the needle close to your vision
—> Profitable and valuable hard and soft skills that can be leveraged at any stage of your professional life.
—> Renewed self-confidence because you were able to be a person of your word and do what you said you would do when you said you would do it long after the feeling of wanting to do it has left.
“How if the heck can one course help me achieve all of that.”
Listen I know it sounds remarkable, but when I say CONQUER Your Chaos Crash Course was created with love and intention, I mean that. Go see for yourself.
Let me guess…
There’s another crumbled-up to-do list on your desk. The ambitions? Abandoned hours ago.
You feel you should have gotten so much more done, but…
At the end of the day, you have no idea where the time went!
The next day. Same thing. You write out all of your ambitions. Item by item. You do everything in your power to cross it all off, but life inevitably gets in the way.
A week goes by. You’re feeling defeated. The needle barely moved. You had the best intentions, but time got away and now you’re behind on your most important tasks.
You chalk it up to it just being “a busy week.” You vow to start fresh on Monday…
And the cycle continues.
You need to stop writing to-do lists. They work for some people, but clearly not you and that’s okay because…
You can try a new approach. Something a little more radical and “in your face.”
But first, let’s take a quick moment to understand why to-do lists may not be working for you…
The Biggest Mistake You’re Making With Your To-Do Lists
This may be a hard pill to swallow, but…
Half the shit you’ve written down on that lists are irrelevant time wasters.
Hear me out!
Most people “co-mingle” their needle-moving and shallow tasks by putting them all on the same list.
Next thing you know,
You’re giving precious T.E.A. 🍵 (Time, Energy, & Attention) to tasks that are:
Not understanding which tasks are needle-moving and which tasks are shallow can cause you to dedicate the most productive hours of the day to tasks that could wait.
In Module 3 of CONQUER Your Chaos Crash Course: Narrow Your Focus, I discuss this in detail.
The point here is, your to-do lists are likely filled with items you have no business doing 💁🏾♀️.
Which leads me to my next point…
How to Identify Your Needle-Moving Tasks
When determining what needs to get done and when you have to understand your “zone of genius”.
A term famously coined by the author of The Big Leap, Gay Hendricks.
I define your “zone of genius” tasks as tasks that require your unique set of skills and knowledge.
The tasks can’t simply be delegated to someone else or automated using some software.
They are tasks that require your full attention and if it doesn’t get done, it affects other parts of your agenda.
When you think of it this way, it should be easier to identify the most important items on your to-do lists.
But remember, this was about kicking your to-do lists to the curb in favor of a more radical approach…
Do This Instead…
Now that you understand how to identify the “needle-moving” tasks on your to-do lists…
Take those tasks and add them directly to your Google Calendar- alarm, time block, and all!
This is about doing what you said you would do when you said you’d do it.
This eliminates many of the excuses like:
When you make an appointment with yourself to complete a to-do list item three powerful things happen:
This will take some getting used to, but it can be effective.
Think about it:
We’re so conditioned to add meetings with others to our calendars with alerts so we won’t forget. Why not add meetings with ourselves to get our most pressing tasks done.
Seriously, our agenda has to come first or someone else will make us prioritize their agenda.
At some point, we have to grant ourselves permission to pivot our processes when they no longer work for us.
If you’re failing at the game of to-do lists. It’s time to do shit differently.
Want to learn more about reclaiming your T.E.A. and getting the RIGHT things done, at the RIGHT time, for the RIGHT reasons? Click here for an inside peek at my flagship program: CONQUER Your Chaos Crash Course.
2. Mental Well-being
5. Quality of Life
6. Health & Fitness
7. Emotional Well-being
8. Spiritual Well-being
9. Intimate Relationship
10. Platonic Relationships
12. Personal Finances
✓ Create a S.M.A.R.T. Goal for each one.
Test the Goal against the 4P’s checklist:
1. Present Tense
✓ Identify an accountability partner who cares enough to keep you in check.
✓ Own the goal by creating a gratitude statement for each one.
✓ Never go a day without reciting the gratitude statements and taking at least one step towards one of your goals.
Do this sis, do it to a proverbial “T” and I promise you will WIN.
When you’re done taking action, share these three secrets with everyone you know and love so we all can be out here living our absolute best, most fabulous lives-Please & Thank You!
After facilitating over 200+ breakthroughs with course creators and hosting luxe VIP Day experiences with entrepreneurs at the top of their game, I was able to create a system that hits all the right spots for someone like you striving to build a profitable, productive, and unconventional business.
My clients are reclaiming their time, energy, and attention, designing unique business models that fit their ideal lifestyle, and creating signature systems that get their clients results, ditching programs and toxic thought patterns that no longer serve them, and finally enjoying the entrepreneurial journey.
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