Hey, it’s JSE with another guest video blog for Super-Trainer. How is it going? All right. I’m going to try to keep this very short and to the point and this video lesson is about productivity. How can you get more done, be more efficient while you have more fun and have a great sense of accomplishment for the things that you’ve done for that day, that week, that month or ultimately to get that project done?
Frequently over my career, I’ve been asked how I get so much done. Well, one thing for certain is I have a great team. I’ve surrounded myself with people who are much better than I am at each specific thing that needs to get done. So definitely having a great team is one part of it but there are things that you can do every single day that will make you far more productive and one of the first things is that from the inception of your day, first when you wake up, get in your mind that you will be productive. It’s kind of like when you talk to your clients about getting motivated, getting fired up for an early morning workout or whatever. You have to do the same thing for your business no matter what it is that you’re doing.
So as soon as you wake up, do something that invigorates you in the morning. It sounds silly but it’s true. Years ago, when I was racing bicycles, I learned something from a European cycling coach. It sounds silly but just try this because you can actually – if you teach a boot camp or early morning CrossFit class, something like that, you can do that with your clients. Part of this is something that I’ve learned from my kung fu training years ago and some of it is from a European cycling coach.
One thing is you rub your hands together just like this and you brush your legs front and back and then your knees and your hamstrings and your quads and your glutes; and then some of the stuff I learned from the kung fu, you rub your kidneys around in a circle and then you rub your stomach and you rub your chest and you rub your arms and then you rub your hands together and then finally you put them on your face from that heat from your hands.
Now obviously – this is a weird lesson, isn’t it? I mean that literally takes two minutes and it will invigorate you for the whole day. It just kind of fires you up. Obviously it stimulates your senses and it increases blood flow. It kind of wakes you up to the world. So it sounds silly but it works well. Rub your hands together and get some heat. Front of the legs, back of the legs, quads, hammies, piriformis. You rub the kidneys. You rub the belly. You rub the chest, your arms and shoulders. You rub your hands together. Place them across your face. Take a deep breath and then get on with whatever you’re going to do. Obviously your morning workout or your yoga or your breakfast or your coffee or whatever it is but get fired up.
Secondly, once you decide what it is that you’re going to do for the day, my suggestion is to work in about one and a half to two-hour chunks and then you take about a 15-minute break. So here, this is my home office. I work from here probably 85 percent of the time. We do have an office down the street but I prefer to be here. It’s quiet. The kids are in school right now and unless someone comes by, the lawn mower or something like that, it’s very quiet so I can be productive.
So I will decide what task I need to do and I will work very, very hard, very focused from one and a half to two hours and I take a 15-minute break. During that 15-minute break, I will go out in my garage. I have a studio out there and I’ll do foam roller and I will do a couple of yoga postures and then I have a pull-up bar. I will just hang from the pull-up bar for a minute just to kind of stretch out because sitting in this chair, your hammies get all tight and you get kind of kyphotic. You know how people are after they sit in a chair too long and then, I will have maybe some almonds and a yogurt. Now it sounds very specific I guess but basically have some fiber. Have a little bit of protein, a little bit of carbs. I stretch out. I feel good and I come back – I have water too and I hit it again for one and a half to two hours.
Now I do that throughout the day for about 6 to 10 hours depending on what my day is. Sometimes it’s shorter. Sometimes it’s longer but I make sure that if whatever I’m focusing on at that time is really, really intense, I’m going to take a 20 or 25-minute break; but it’s roughly one and a half to two hours, 15-minute break, one and a half to two hours, 15-minute break. If it’s something really, really intense, it might be an hour and a half to two hours, 20 maybe 30-minute break and then back at it and keep going with that.
Another thing is that right now, I’m – I’m going to unplug it here. I’m charging my Droid but I have the ringer off because I don’t want to be interrupted and I don’t check my emails all the time and I never answer the phone if it’s a private or a suppressed number for however they do that or if I don’t have it identified or if I don’t recognize the number, I don’t pick it up. If it’s that important, they will leave a message but now, obviously you even get sales calls just on your cell phone for whatever reason and it’s very distracting. So, put all that stuff aside. Close out any extra windows on your computer and just really, really focus on that single task.
Multitasking does not work. It has been proven again and again and again. Now, it’s true that women are better at it than men and the biologist and embryologist believe that it’s because women –because they have to take care of the children have learned to be able to handle more than one thing at once better than men. So that happened over time and so women tend to do better than men at multitasking. However, no one is really good at it when it comes to being singularly-focused and getting something done on a high level with a high level of efficiency and a high level of accuracy. It just can’t be done. So stop multitasking and focus on one mode at a time.
So do all your emails. Crank them out. Do all your texting. Crank it out. Do all your social media stuff. Crank it out. If you have to do any editing, crank all that stuff out. If you have to do all your training in the morning, you’re training other clients or you’re doing your coaching or whatever, do that. If you have to do whatever technical stuff, set aside a time for that and do it in chunks so you can stay in that frame of mind but also you use roughly the same part of your brain so you can just focus on that.
Get it done and then move on to the next thing. I promise you it will allow you to get far more done in far less time and it will be much more efficient. So stay away from bright, shiny objects that are distracting. There is a lot of information out there. A lot of it is really cool but know what you need. Know what you need to know. Know who you need to know and figure out what technology you need. Do you need education? Do you need a certification? Do you need technology? Do you need to outsource? Do you need more sleep?
Whatever it is, focus on one thing at a time. Do it well and don’t get distracted by all the little bright, shiny objects which can inhibit your ability to get more done. It’s tough because we’re bombarded with a ton of information each and everyday. I forget how many hundreds or thousands of bits of information and marketing and data that we’re bombarded with each day but you have the right to turn the channel, to flip the off switch, to mute it, to not open the browser and so it’s amazing how much more you get done.
Just this last weekend, I took a break. I did not work out for two days which for me, for two days in a row was a lot. I didn’t work out for two days and I didn’t turn on my computer either or it was hibernating. It wasn’t actually turned off but I didn’t use it. How about that? Just having that break allowed me to come back fresh and focused as well.
So maybe you need to step away from everything for a day as well as you go through this assessment process to figure out what’s most important and then you come back fresh and eager and very, very focused. All right?
You can do it. I promise you, you will get more done, have more fun, have a greater level of efficiency and everything will be done in a much, much higher level. All you have to do is stay away from bright, shiny objects and have that focused work and break cycle. It will help. I’m John Spencer Ellis. Thanks.
Dr. John Spencer “JSE” Ellis