One of my biggest interests in life is learning. If I encounter something new and exciting, I will get obsessed with it. I will read anything I can find on it, I will talk to people who have already done it and most importantly, I will practice it. The urge to constantly practice will be so overwhelming, that I will artificially have to restrict myself to avoid going overboard, as Radical Effort can actually be a very counter-productive approach.
As a result of my passion for learning, I’ve been asking myself for years how you can get better at learning itself. How can you make sure you WILL succeed at your chosen area of learning? I know it sounds really unworldly, but this is a question that has kept me up for many a night. I hate the idea of wasting time on sub-optimal methods, it just drives me nuts.
I have mentioned the Paleo diet a couple of times in recent articles as a means to be significantly more productive. In this article, I would like to explain why that is so and why you should start eating a Paleo diet for productivity too.
Ever since I was a child, I would have several really bad sinus infections a year. And trust me, these are not to be confused with the common cold. My nose would be so stuffy I couldn’t get any air. Even the really potent nasal sprays would only help temporarily. Every night, I felt as if I was suffocating. On top of that, my throat would get so sore, I couldn’t eat much for days (great way to lose weight though…). But by far the worst was the sinus pressure below my eyes – it was constantly there, no matter what medication I took, and it wouldn’t let me sleep for more than 4-5 hours a night. As I got older, these infections would take longer and longer to run their course, sometimes up to 10 weeks. Imagine! For 10 WEEKS, I wouldn’t be able to think straight or get much work done, because I was constantly feeling like shit or completely stoned by hardcore medications, as my doctors had started to prescribe me some really strong stuff, like cortisone and prednisolone (also used for treating cancer patients).
If you are interested in self improvement (otherwise, why would you be reading this blog…), I’m sure you have experienced the following process: You come across a certain idea that completely sets you on fire. Maybe it’s working out to become more muscular or maybe it’s starting your own location independent business or maybe even learning how to talk to girls. Regardless, you get really excited about it. Then suddenly there seems to be a whole new realm of possibilities and you throw yourself into it. You read anything you can get your hands on about the subject. You start talking to friends about it. You join a gym / you start a website / you go out on the streets and talk to strangers. You go full force and give it everything you have. And the world seems great, because you are actually doing it! You are going after what you truly want and that feels liberating and inspiring.
This lasts for about two months or so…
We have established that, when it comes to personal productivity, Energy Management always has to take a front row seat. No energy, no productivity – no matter what productivity system you use. This is because personal energy is a finite resource: Once you’ve used it up, you are pretty much done for the day.
We also looked at practical ways of maximizing your available energy on any given day. So ideally, you start every day with a “points total” of 100 energy points; i.e. your maximum capacity.
Now it’s time to discuss ways of using that available energy in the smartest possible way, since we want to make sure you get the most bang for your buck. There are different factors which may affect this, like timing, quality of the task and so on. We’ll now go through them step by step.