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Unlock Your Brain’s Hidden Potential

Your Short Guide to Ultimate Brain Health

Your brain is just like any other part of your body. In order to maintain optimum function and to get the very most from it, you need to treat it right.

And this is rather important, seeing as your brain is responsible for pretty much everything you do. Whether it’s the obviously ‘mental’ stuff, like concentrating at work or performing complex sums; whether it’s physical stuff like regulating your breathing, helping you sleep and directing your movements; or whether it’s managing your emotions and helping you to feel happy and calm.

Whatever it is you’re doing or experiencing, your brain is at the route of it. And thus you can improve every aspect of the human experience just by focussing on your brain health.

How Your Brain Function Can be Enhanced

The trouble is that many people have very little idea just how to go about looking after their brains. This is the most previous piece of equipment in the world – more powerful than infinite supercomputers – but we tend to just ignore it and hope it all works out okay.

In fact, a lot of the time, we unintentionally subject it to a fair amount of abuse!

For starters, most of us eat entirely the wrong diet and this means our body doesn’t have access to the raw materials it needs in order to maintain optimum brain function. In the short term, this makes us feel groggy and slow but in the long term, it can lead to cumulative damage that results in neurological diseases and age-related cognitive decline. That’s right: it’s not inevitable that you should become forgetful and cantankerous as you get older!

The other problem is that most of us don’t use our brains enough. We don’t challenge them and we don’t train them. Due to a phenomenon called ‘brain plasticity’, it is actually possible for us to train and grow our brains just like a muscle. New neurons can be created and new connections can be

formed and strengthened. This all means that it’s possible for us to develop certain brain areas beyond others and actually enhance our abilities as a result.

But when you stop challenging your brain or training it, it can lead to all kinds of problems. Especially when you combine that with high levels of stress and the aforementioned poor diet…

How You Started Destroying Your Brain With Bad Nutrition and Stress

The way that most people eat these days is enough to severely damage our health and lead to serious problems.

As mentioned previously, the brain needs a large number of very specific nutrients in order to function well. These include the all-important precursors to various neurotransmitters. Neurotransmitters are chemicals that change our mood and the way they think – they help us to sleep, to feel good, to focus and to remember things.

But the brain makes these neurotransmitters out of vitamins, minerals and amino acids. If you aren’t getting enough l-tyrosine for instance, then you might struggle to make dopamine – the neurotransmitter responsible for helping us to focus, stay motivated and remember things. Meanwhile, tryptophan is what the brain uses to create the ‘feel good’ neurotransmitter serotonin. This is then later converted to melatonin to help us sleep.

Vitamin B6 is a building block for numerous neurotransmitters including dopamine, epinephrine (focus), serotonin and GABA (calmness). Choline, found in eggs, is the precursor to acetylcholine which can improve pretty much every single aspect of your cognitive function!

Then there are the countless other crucial nutrients that the brain needs to perform optimally. For example, healthy arbs are what fuel the brain with energy, antioxidants protect the brain cells from free radicals and zinc enhances brain plasticity.

But most of us are not getting anywhere near enough nutrients in our diets. That’s because we eat far too much ‘processed foods’. Processed foods contain lots of calories to make us feel full but they are ‘empty calories’ that are devoid of the things we need.

Meanwhile, our switch to a more modern diet that doesn’t include things like fish, mean that even those who try to eat ‘healthily’ are generally not getting the things they need. A perfect example of this is the modern lack of omega 3 fatty acid. Omega 3 is a fatty acid found in fish (and some plants), which aids with ‘cell membrane permeability’ (especially the DHA form). This is important because it allows things to pass more easily through the cell walls – good things like nutrients and signals from other parts of the body. At the same time, omega 3 fatty acid is also used by the brain to create a number of hormones that are linked with managing the blood. This way, omega 3 is able to reduce blood pressure and heart problems.

Most importantly though, this also allows omega 3 fatty acid to reduce inflammation in the brain and the predominance of ‘pro-inflammatory cytokines’. This is highly important, seeing as pro-inflammatory cytokines are what make you feel so groggy and confused when you’re poorly or very tired. Brain fog is a serious problem and it’s made worse by the fact that most of us also have far too much omega 6 fatty acid. Omega 6 fatty acid is a useful nutrient in its own right but when we get too much of it, it can actually lower omega 3 and cause more inflammation. Most of us have far too much omega 6, because it is used in all kinds of preservative oils.

This is then combined with chronic dehydration, which most of us experience on a daily basis. Dehydration can also cause inflammation in the brain, while also generally leading to sluggish performance.

These processed foods are also examples of ‘simple carbs’ – carbs that have no sustenance and which the body processes very quickly. This results in a sudden spike in blood sugar that provides you with a burst of energy, followed by an immediate trough straight afterward.

Then there are all the toxins and high quantities of sugars that we consume regularly – and the cancer causing free-radicals.

Is it any wonder that you struggle to think through the thick haze sometimes?

The Role of Stress

Even worse is the role of stress. Today, it’s a sad fact that a great number of us experience chronic stress, leading to elevated levels of cortisol (the stress hormone) in our systems. This has a number of serious negative effects on our health and on our brain function in particular.

For starters, when there is excess cortisol in the system, this increases the amount of the neurotransmitter ‘glutamate’. Glutamate is a general excitatory neurotransmitter and this means that you’ll experience increased brain activity across the board. This leads to heightened awareness and that sense of nagging thoughts. It also makes it harder to sleep, which can lead to memory loss and depression. But perhaps the most worrying side effect is that ongoing stress also leads to the creation of more free radicals – unattached oxygen molecules that attack the brain cells and potentially cause cancer. It can also generally destroy brain cells, robbing you of your ability to think straight.

Also worrying is that stress depletes levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). This is the principle neurotransmitter that stimulates the creation of new brain cells and it’s highly important for increasing brain plasticity. In other words, stress prevents you from learning and this in turn is associated with depression, OCD, schizophrenia, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

And cortisol also acts contrary to numerous other important neurochemicals. That is to say that when cortisol goes up, these go down. And key victims here are serotonin (happiness), testosterone (drive) and dopamine (motivation and learning).

Just in case that you thought the ‘more alert’ part sounded cool earlier. Note that this also increases your awareness of things like nagging pains, irritating noises and more. This is why stress is associated with tinnitus – the ringing sound some people experience in their ear that has no cause.

And meanwhile, heightened stress can actually cause our frontal cortex – the part used for planning, creativity and higher-order thinking – to completely shutdown.

So in short, stress can absolutely neuter your cognitive ability in the short term and cause long term damage if it is allowed to continue.

The Day You Stopped Learning

All this would be bad enough, if our current lifestyles didn’t also involve so little learning and actually using our brains.

The brain is a tool that has one singular interest: heling us to survive in our environment. And the way it does this is to adapt and to evolve, to enable us to get more reward and less punishment. It helps us seek out food, shelter and sex, while avoiding pain, hunger and fear.

To do this, our brain needs to learn. It predicts outcomes, tries new things and then decides whether or not to do that again based on the response. If it got food, then the neural connections involved in that action are strengthened and it will do it again in future. If it got pain, then the neural connections will be largely overridden and it won’t do it again…

But the brain loves doing this. Learning, exploring and adventuring keeps the brain youthful and nimble and encourages continued growth and the production of more dopamine and BDNF to encourage plasticity.

Once life stops being unique and interesting, the brain stops needing to pay attention and can rely on existing connections. Thus, the things you are already good at get strengthened and everything else gets pruned. You become set in your ways and your brain ceases production of dopamine and BDNF – preventing you from being able to learn new things. And this is when dementia has been shown to kick in.

Now with all this in mind, consider the way your life has changed from when you were younger to now. When you were born, everything was new and your brain was highly plastic. You were constantly learning new things and discovering new things. Thus your brain was filled with novelty and it responded to this by producing huge amounts of dopamine and BDNF. This is why children can pick up languages so incredibly quickly. It’s why they’re always smiling and it’s why they’re always curious and learning.

As we get older, we become more familiar with the world around us. Things get more set in stone and we no longer have to learn simple things like how to walk or what a tree is.

But we’re still learning – we’re learning at school, we’re learning when we watch TV and we’re daydreaming about all the things we could be! This continues to a lesser extent into adolescence as we head off to college and as we start dating for the first time, learn to drive and learn to pay the rent in our own apartments.

Even in young adulthood, much is new as we travel with friends and as we try out different jobs and progress through our careers.

But then things start to slow down. We stop learning new things and we find a job that we like and stay in it. Meanwhile, our bodies become tireder and we gain more responsibilities–like childrenand mortgages. We settle down in some part of town and don’t move home or environment…

The result is that we end up stuck in a rut and going through the same motions day in, day out. All the while our brain is flooded with stress hormones and we’re eating entirely the wrong diet.

All this contributes to a general slowing of our brain function, damage to our mood and wellbeing and the growing inability to learn. This is why older people are stereotypically more closed minded – they’re literally become set in their way. It’s like taking the same route across a lawn every single day – eventually that route will become entrenched and you’ll never be able to go any other way.

Brain cells start dying, your mood deteriorates and you crawl toward inevitable old-age.

The Solution

Wow, that’s depressing! The good news is that it’s also wrong.

The inevitable bit, that is. Old age may be inevitable but the cognitive decline associated with it most assuredly is not. In fact, there are plenty of ways you can combat age related cognitive decline and keep your brain youthful and healthy well into older age.

Read on and we’ll look at what some of the things you can do are…

Fix Your Nutrition

Step number one is to fix your nutrition. Instead of eating lots of processed foods, sugary snacks and preserved ready meals, you need to switch to nutrient dense sources of complex, slow-release carbs, to lean proteins, to vegetables and fruits!

This doesn’t mean switching to some kind of fad diet. It just means eating food with real, natural ingredients. And it means seeking out those ‘superfoods’ whenever you can.

If you only add a few things to your diet, consider these:


Eggs are absolutely amazing in just about every way when it comes to your brain and your health in general. For starters, eggs are one of the only ‘complete’ sources of protein. This means that they contain 100% of the essential amino acids that you can’t produce in your body, thereby helping you to produce all kinds of neurotransmitters.

Eggs are also rich sources of selenium, vitamin D, B6, B12, zinc, iron and copper… all things that can boost your brain power.

Best of all, eggs are also high in choline – which is the chemical precursor to ‘acetylcholine’. Acetylcholine meanwhile is a neurotransmitter that helps keep us alert, awake and highly attuned to our senses.

As though that wasn’t enough, eggs are a great source of saturated fats. Saturated fats are also highly beneficial for the brain, seeing as the brain is largely made of fat. Plus it boosts testosterone, which is linked with drive and motivation, as well as mood (and low cortisol).


Tuna is an excellent source of amino acids yet again and is nice and lean for those of you trying to keep their weight down. What’s more, is that tuna is a brilliant natural source of omega 3 fatty acid. We’ve already seen the amazing health benefits of omega 3 fatty acid, so ‘nuff said on that front. Oh and it’s cheap too!

But while tuna is great source of all these things, it is a little high in mercury owing to pollution – so don’t eat more than a small can a day.

Red Grapes

Red grapes are high in a substance called resveratrol. Resveratrol is a potent antioxidant, which means that it can prevent the action of free radicals in the brain and thereby reduce your chances of brain tumor or Alzheimer’s. At the same time though, resveratrol is also able to enhance the function of the mitochondria, thereby helping them to produce more energy for your brain cells. It turns out that resveratrol isn’t quite as powerful as some earlier studies suggested but it’s certainly still no slouch either!

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil contains something called MCT oil – Medium Chain Triglycerides. This is a type of oil that stimulates the liver to produce ketones. Ketones meanwhile are an alternative energy source that the brain can use instead of glucose. The brain actually prefers ketones for a number of tasks, which makes this a great way to give your


If you want to give your brain a little more edge, then you can do so by seeking out a number of different supplements and nootropics. Some good examples include:


Creatine allows the body to recycle its ATP stores. ATP is the body’s primary source of energy and is used by every single cell – including the brain cells. This way, creatine is able to give us more energy to think smarter and improve mental vigilance. It has been shown in studies to increase IQ.

Omega 3

Getting omega 3 from the diet alone can be hard, so supplementing with a DHA product is a good choice. Avoid cod liver oil if you’re pregnant however, due to the large amounts of retinol.


Caffeine will give you a short term boost in concentration, memory and wakefulness. It’s not perfect and can decrease creativity while also being mildly addictive. But it is neuroprotective and can prevent Alzheimer’s.

Lifestyle Changes

Finally, don’t forget the power of numerous lifestyle changes. Getting better sleep is absolutely critical to increase neurotransmitter stores, remove adenosine (which contributes to brain fog) and strengthen new neural pathways.

Also very important is exercise. The brain is primarily designed for movement – this is what the majority of brain areas actually specialize in! Moving the body is the best way to learn and to stimulate plasticity, while cardio will also improve circulation to the brain while adding a short term increase in serotonin and endorphins.

Finally, make sure to keep learning, keep exposing yourself to novel surrounds and keep trying new things. Computer games are actually a great way to do this – as every new game includes new environments and new rules to uncover!

Of course we’re only just scratching the surface of what you can do to increase your IQ, your wakefulness, your creativity and your long-term brain health. In the full book, we go into much more depth discussing the huge number of specific brain training techniques, health strategies and more that you can use to start getting more out of your brain and looking after it.

A lot of this is about what you need to stop doing. And it’s about making small changes to your routine and lifestyle – like eating a little more fruit and perhaps walking a little more. Doing small things can make a huge difference to the way you feel now and in the future, it could potentially be the difference that adds 5 or 10 years of quality life. Look after your brain and everything will get better.

Boost Your Strength


 Everyone suffers from fatigue and exhaustion in their lives for many different reasons. Whether it’s because they work too hard or don’t get enough sleep at night, or because they have a lot of mental baggage that drains their energy, or they maintain an unhealthy diet.

For too long we’ve been living in a society that has trained us to focus outside ourselves for the answers and expend our precious energy creating things externally.

This kind of results-focused mindset causes us to neglect our inner strength and power, which results in us being chronically fatigued and drained of energy.

One thing that everyone needs to get through the daily grind is energy. Without it, we just can’t do what we have to do. The most significant difference between people who understand what they want and people who don’t is energy. Everything that we do uses up energy.

We expend energy every time we think, perform, or express ourselves. Often, we associate the term energy with the physical variant. However, the fact is that energy is also used for other aspects of daily living.

 Both mental and emotional energy is used daily, and in order to keep yourself productive and functional, you have to keep all three aspects energized. Unfortunately, energy is not something that you can hold onto forever.

With every single action that you take, you expend energy.

Every step that you walk, every moment you think, every ounce of emotion you use, cost you energy, and there will come a time when your energy will become depleted, and you’ll become too exhausted to do anything.

If you don’t take care of yourself, there will become a time when you can’t go on physically, mentally, or emotionally. You’ll have exhausted yourself to the limit. This will result in what is known as burnout.

Burnout can have a devastating effect on your performance, including limiting the number of tasks you can complete in a day, the quality of those tasks you are able to complete, and you won’t be able to fulfill your commitments.



Before you can begin to overcome your fatigue, you need first to understand what fatigue is all about. Fatigue is often referred to as lethargy or exhaustion and is that feeling of tiredness and weakness, both physically and mentally.

You can experience temporary fatigue, which is a result of too much work or not getting enough rest. This kind of fatigue can be easily overcome. There is also chronic or medical fatigue, which is more long-term and requires more serious treatment to overcome.

According to research, 10 percent of the world population suffers from fatigue at any given time, with females being affected by fatigue more than males. Most cases of fatigue have underlying mental causes rather than physical causes and one out of five people who suffer fatigue in the United States, states that it affects their normal function and daily lives.


There are two kinds of fatigue that you can suffer from, physical fatigue and mental fatigue. Physical fatigue is when you have a hard time doing the things that you usually do, like carrying grocery bags or climbing stairs. Physical exhaustion is just not having enough physical strength to complete daily tasks.

Mental, or psychological fatigue, on the other hand, is when you find it difficult to concentrate on things. In severe cases, you may find even the prospect of getting out of bed to be too much work.

You may feel tired all the time and may also suffer from a lower level of consciousness, which can be extremely dangerous, especially when driving or operating heavy machinery. If you suffer from mental fatigue, you may be mistaken for being drunk or intoxicated.


Often times, when referring to fatigue, the words sleepiness and weakness are used to describe the condition. When the phrase weakness is used, it refers to a situation where your muscles just don’t have enough strength to complete even the simplest of physical tasks.

When you experience weakness as a symptom of fatigue, you often need to apply extra effort just to move your arms, legs, and other body parts. This is usually a result of overexerting yourself at some point, like when running a marathon or spending the entire day hiking.

Your body will feel tired and weak, and you’ll experience some aches and pains. Fortunately, with enough rest, these symptoms will disappear after a couple of days.


Sleepiness, also called somnolence, is when you feel sleepy even when you are in the middle of an activity. This can be as a result of not getting enough sleep, which is necessary for you to feel rejuvenated and make you feel more relaxed.


To overcome fatigue, you must understand the root causes behind it. If you can eliminate the root causes from your life, you can permanently get rid of fatigue from your life. The origins of fatigue can be divided into three main groups; lifestyle, psychological, and medical.


If you are suffering from fatigue, you may need to look carefully at your lifestyle. Drinking too much alcohol or caffeinated drinks, maintaining unhealthy eating habits, excessive physical work, and activities, and lacking the proper amount of sleep can all contribute to fatigue in your life. To eliminate fatigue from your life, you’ll have to consider adjusting your lifestyle.


Your fatigue could also be a result of common mental health conditions. If you suffer from depression, stress, anxiety, or are dealing with grief; you can find your energy drained. These common mental health issues can make you feel tired and listless.


In some instances, a medical condition can leave you feeling exhausted. If you are experiencing chronic fatigue, it is essential to talk to your doctor to determine if you are suffering from a severe medical condition that is resulting in chronic fatigue. Here are some of the common medical conditions that can result in chronic fatigue.

  • Depression will not only make you feel sad and empty, but it will also drain you of energy. It can cause you to lose sleep, which will result in more fatigue. The first step to correcting this issue is to seek out professional help to address the problem.
  • Diabetes is the body’s inability to produce any or enough insulin to maintain proper sugar levels. While Type 2 diabetes can be controlled with diet and exercise, Type 1 will require medical intervention to keep it under control. Having unstable blood sugar levels can lead to exhaustion and fatigue and can lead to long-term damage to your body.
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome can make you feel certain disabling tiredness that will last for months. Causes can be physical, mental or dietary. However, there is no specific test that can diagnose chronic fatigue syndrome.
  • Sleep Apnea is a disorder that results in intermittent stopping and starting of your breathing while you sleep. This pattern will cause a lack of oxygen to your body and lack of sleep, leaving you feeling more tired after sleeping than you did before.
  • Toxic Exposure can leave your feeling drained and fatigued. Chemical solvents, dust, chlorine, and other pollutants and toxins can not only result in chronic fatigue but can also cause long-term damage to your body.
  • Chronic inflammation is one of the most common causes of fatigue and can be caused by stress, improper diet, injury, and many other things. It is essential to determine the specific cause and get the proper treatment because along with causing fatigue, chronic inflammation can also lead to long-term damage to joints, skin, and other organs.
  • Nutritional Deficiencies are one of the biggest causes of exhaustion and fatigue. When you are pushed to the limits physically and emotionally, getting the right fuel in your body is extremely important. A proper, balanced diet of fresh fruit and vegetables, lean meat, and grains are imperative for eliminating exhaustion in your life.

To fight fatigue and extreme exhaustion you have to identify the root causes of your condition.


The main sign of fatigue is exhaustion and tiredness, especially after completing a strenuous physical activity or mental exercise. While you may rest after the activity, your mind and body may still feel exhausted. Here are some of the other symptoms of fatigue that you should know if you want to learn how to overcome it.


The physical symptoms of fatigue include sore muscles, dizziness, abdominal pain, headache, bloating, vision problems, and painful lymph nodes. If you experience any of these symptoms for more than two weeks, it is essential to talk to your doctor to rule out any common conditions that can lead to chronic fatigue.


If you have chronic fatigue, you may suffer from poor concentration, apathy, or a lack of motivation. You may also experience moodiness, indecisiveness, irritability, hallucinations, loss of appetite, memory impairment, poor judgment, slow reflexes and responses to stimuli, sleepiness, or drowsiness.

By knowing these symptoms, you can identify if you are suffering from chronic fatigue or if you are just tired and in need of a good night’s sleep. Knowing the symptoms can help you find the right solution so you can get rid of your fatigue and enhance your energy.




One of the leading causes of chronic fatigue is eating an unhealthy diet. If you eat the wrong kinds of foods often, you can begin to feel tired and overly exhausted. In order to eliminate fatigue and enhance your energy levels, you need to avoid those foods that make you feel tired and heavy.


When you feel tired, and your energy starts to wane, you may be tempted to reach for the candy bar you have hiding in your desk drawer. While it will give you an instant boost in energy, after about an hour, you’ll be right back where you started. Instead of reaching for foods that are high in sugar, you need to eat foods that are high in protein and that contain complex carbohydrates.

Foods that contain complex carbohydrates and are high in protein help to increase your blood glucose levels and keep them at the right level, providing your body with energy for a more extended period. Complex carbohydrates also are digested at a slower rate than simple carbs, resulting in you feeling fuller for longer.

Throughout the day you should try and consume whole grain products like whole wheat bread or whole grain crackers. Add some peanut butter or low-fat cheese and another source of protein to keep you energized throughout the day.


In order to break down the glucose in your blood and turn it into energy, you need to consume Magnesium. Along with converting glucose into energy, magnesium is necessary for the other 300 biochemical processes that take place in your body.

When magnesium levels get too low, your energy level drops significantly, because your glucose isn’t being turned into energy properly. Studies have shown that people who have magnesium deficiencies are more likely to tire easily after doing physical tasks.

Having low levels of magnesium can result in easily feeling out of breath and having an increased heart rate. This is an indication that your body is working harder, which can quickly drain your energy and make you feel exhausted.

It is vital that you get the recommended amount of magnesium in your diet if you want to eliminate fatigue. Some excellent sources of magnesium include fish, like halibut, whole grains, almonds, hazelnuts, and cashews.


It is far better for you and your energy level to eat small meals with snacks in between, rather than eating less frequently, but overeating at every meal. This is what is known as power snacking.

By eating small snacks between meals, you keep your blood sugar up and your energy levels high. You can snack on yogurt, fruits, cheese, beef jerky, and nuts to keep you from getting too hungry between meals.

Overeating at meal time isn’t good because it can make you feel bloated and heavy, which can result in feeling too lazy to move. To avoid overeating, you may want to consider putting your food on a smaller plate to give the illusion that your plate is full enough and that you are eating a lot.


Not only does drinking enough water every day improve your overall health and well-being, but it can help you avoid feeling tired and weak. Water keeps your body hydrated at all times which can help to prevent fatigue. To take full advantage of the power of water, you should consume at least eight cups of water daily. Otherwise, you’ll feel sluggish for the entire day.


Soluble fiber helps your body absorb sugars more slowly, which is necessary for you to obtain a more sustainable level of energy. When your body absorbs sugar to quickly, it can lead to a sudden crash soon after the sugar high. You can get soluble fiber from eating nuts, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, oats, and beans.


Stimulants like coffee, soda, and nicotine can quickly exhaust your adrenaline glands making you feel tired for extended periods of time. Coffee and other caffeinated products can give you the quick energy boost that you need but can become counterproductive if you become dependent on it. If you want to eliminate fatigue, then you have to stop consuming things that give you a quick energy boost.



If you tend to feel tired and exhausted all the time, there are several foods that you can eat to detoxify your body and mind.

Eating cabbage and broccoli will help to cleanse harmful toxins from your liver, and are both rich in antioxidants. Consuming beets can help to cleanse your body while eliminating free radicals. Other foods that can help detoxify your body are:

  •  Avocados
  •  Asparagus
  •  Garlic
  •  Green Tea
  •  Lemongrass
  • Wheatgrass


Properly timing your meals can have a profound effect on your metabolism and energy. Eating too much or too little can make you feel lethargic and can disrupt blood sugar levels, resulting in chronic fatigue. Timing your meals will ensure that you will have enough energy to get through the day and accomplish your tasks without feeling exhausted afterward.



We’ve all heard the saying, “breakfast is the most important meal of the day,” and for a good reason. Breakfast is the first meal of the day and acts as the fuel that you need to keep going. Eating a nutritional breakfast makes you more productive and energetic in the morning and helps to keep you fueled throughout the morning.

If you have a satisfying meal in the morning, you can get away with eating a lighter lunch and dinner. Overeating in the afternoons and evening can make you feel sluggish and actually diminish the energy you have to get you through the rest of the day.

Maintaining a well-balanced diet and consuming the right kinds of foods at the right times throughout the day can help you eliminate fatigue and enhance your energy levels. Following the above advice will keep your energy levels high throughout the day and allow you to accomplish more in your day.


Another cause of fatigue can be contributed to having a poor lifestyle. The wrong kind of lifestyle will cause fatigue and exhaustion, as well as leading to a number of other health problems in your life.

You may not know it but the things that you do every day could be contributing to your constant fatigue and exhaustion. To work toward finally getting rid of fatigue, you need to know how to change your lifestyle to keep your energy levels high.


One of the fundamentals of energy management is learning how to take care of your body. Taking care of it well, allows you to keep the pace for more extended periods. One of the essential aspects of taking care of your body is exercising.

You may think that trying to exercise when you are tired is counterproductive. However, exercising is extremely useful in fighting fatigue. Exercise helps to improve your endurance and muscle strength, which makes you feel less tired as time goes by.

It also helps to distribute the nutrients and oxygen to your cells, which allow your body to work more efficiently. When your body works more efficiently, you don’t feel as tired when you participate in physical activity because your body doesn’t have to work double time.


  • It keeps your body in excellent condition, which is one of the biggest keys to keeping your energy levels up. When you get enough physical exercise, you develop physical endurance. This is especially true when you participate in a cardio workout. By merely getting into shape, you can have more energy to survive the daily grind.
  • It’s an outlet for stress release. Stress can not only make you fed up physically, but it can cause you to become fed up both mentally and emotionally. Having an outlet to release tension is extremely important for keeping your stable. There are many ways you can release stress, but one of the best ways is to engage in physical exercise.
  • It can help you sculpt your body. As your muscles become more defined, your body works more efficiently.
  • It can relieve you of the effects of chronic fatigue. Fatigue can have a devastating impact on your life. One of the best ways to reduce the impact of fatigue is to exercise regularly. Regular exercise strengthens your muscles and joints that may be worn out with repetitive work.

There are many ways that you can increase your levels of physical activity to help enhance your energy. You can head to the gym, you can head out for a jog in the morning or evenings, or you can participate in a sport on the weekends. Here are some other forms of exercise that you can do to help you overcome exhaustion.


Practicing yoga will not only help increase your energy, but it is also excellent for regaining your balance. Practicing yoga on a regular basis can help you deal with stress and decrease the symptoms of depression. It is known to help improve flexibility, as well as increase metabolic rate while boosting your cardiovascular health.


Walking and running are great ways to get your heart pumping and your body moving. Along with increasing your energy levels, running or walking can help to improve your overall health and aids in the prevention of many diseases.

Creating a running or walking habit can help to relieve stress, which can quickly kill your energy levels. These forms of exercise can also reduce symptoms of depression. Along with giving you an instant boost in energy, it can also help to clear your mind.


Tai Chi is one of the most popular kinds of exercises in the East. Tai Chi can increase your vitality and help you combat stress. It can also improve your cognitive function while effectively elevating your energy levels. It is also known to improve your quality of sleep, which is enormous when it comes to restoring your energy and vitality.



Dancing is one of the most enjoyable forms of exercise. It can help you to combat stress while toning your muscles. Dancing is also one of the most effective ways to manage your weight.

Participating in an organized dance lesson or just going out for a fun night of dancing on a Friday night can make you feel happy, which can be extremely beneficial when you are fighting fatigue.

You don’t have to commit to intense workouts to benefit from the physical activity. Something as simple as changing your usual sedentary routine can do a lot for your energy and overall health. Consider taking the stairs rather than hopping on the elevator, or park farther away from the store entrance when out shopping.

You can also try new hobbies that involve physical activity, like playing sports, hiking, or biking. These simple and fun activities can help make your body stronger and decrease fatigue. As you begin to become more physically active, you will notice a substantial increase in your energy, making completing your daily tasks much easier.


Another reason you may be suffering from fatigue and exhaustion is that you aren’t getting enough rest and restorative sleep. If you try to do too many tasks at one time, you’ll end up feeling physically and mentally tired, which can quickly lead to fatigue. This is why it is so important to give your body and mind a break and time to recover after doing something that is particularly stressful or tiring.

On average, most people require eight hours of sleep every night to avoid fatigue. To ensure you get the sleep you need, it is essential to set a regular bedtime and wake up at the same time every day to allow your body to get used to the routine.

When you get enough sleep at night, you will naturally wake up, without having to rely on setting the alarm. It is much better for your physical and mental health to wake up on your own, rather than relying on an alarm.

If for some reason, you aren’t able to get eight hours of sleep, you can make up for the lost sleep hours by taking a nap during the day. This will allow you to catch up on sleep without disrupting your regular sleep patterns.

Another way to keep yourself from becoming overly fatigued is to rest your body and mind after completing tasks. Utilize breaks at work wisely to become more efficient and productive. When you are doing household chores, be sure to take a break so you can reenergize your body.

You may be in the habit of drinking alcohol after dinner or before you go to bed because you think that it helps you sleep better.

However, alcohol prevents your mind and body from going into a deep sleep, resulting in you not feeling rested and refreshed, even if you get the recommended eight hours of sleep at night.

Smoking can also zap your energy because it prevents you from getting a good night’s sleep. People who quit smoking have claimed that their energy levels double, and sometimes triple, after getting rid of the bad habit. Smoking can cause you to feel moody, cranky, and irritable throughout the day, which can drain your energy. If you want to enhance your energy and eliminate fatigue, you need to find a way to quit smoking.

Along with affecting your energy and causing you to be more fatigues, alcohol consumption and smoking can have other adverse effects on your body that can significantly impact your health.


Along with participating in hobbies that require you to expend energy, like hiking, dancing, or a variety of sports, you should also engage in hobbies that are relaxing. Hobbies that promote relaxation are great for when you need to unwind after a long day at work or an afternoon of strenuous activity.

Rather than reaching for the TV remote or video game controller when you need to relax, you need to find a relaxing activity like gardening or reading. Unfortunately, TV and video games require your mind to continue to work, which can increase your stress, even if you are just sitting on the couch.

Engaging in relaxing activities like baking or woodworking will relax both your mind and body because they don’t require you to overthink and are not physically strenuous.


Meditation is a powerful tool that you can use to help you manage your stress and eliminate fatigue, and improve the overall quality of your life. It has also been shown to improve your cognitive function and increase your energy and vitality when practiced regularly.

When you practice meditation regularly, you are in fact, training your body to relax. When you rest, you lower the levels of cortisol that your body is producing. Cortisol is known as the stress hormone because it is released when you become stressed. High levels of cortisol in your blood are associated with fatigue, increased blood pressure, stress, and weight gain.

If you are just starting out with meditation, here’s how to get the most benefit from each session.

  • Sit or lie comfortably. You may want to invest in a good meditation chair or cushion to ensure that you are comfortable throughout the entire session.
  • Close your eyes.
  • Breathe naturally. Try to avoid trying to control your breathing. Just inhale and exhale as you usually would.
  • Start to focus your attention on your breath and how your body moves with every inhalation and exhalation. Notice the movement of your body as you breathe. Observe your chest, shoulders, rib cage, and belly. Focus your attention on your breathing, avoiding trying to control its pace or intensity. If you find that your mind is wandering, return your focus back to your breath.

Maintain your meditation for two to three minutes when you are first starting out. Once you find that you can maintain your focus for at least three minutes, you can start to increase the time of each session. There are no real downsides to meditation and can be incredibly relaxing and help relieve symptoms of fatigue each session. There are no real downsides to meditation and can be incredibly relaxing and help relieve symptoms of fatigue.


Recent studies have shown that listening to soothing music can reduce stress, anxiety, and fatigue. It has also been shown to help you get a good night’s sleep, effectively reducing the effects of insomnia, which can help you further fight fatigue.

Music helps to calm us down, relax our muscles, reduce stress, decrease blood pressure, and improve the heart rate. It works similarly as meditation. To help eliminate stress and increase your energy, try listening to soothing music, like Bach, in the mornings and before you go to bed at night.


One thing that can cause you to become fatigued is chaos and clutter in your life. If you want to be free of fatigue and exhaustion, then you need to keep your home, workspace, and life, in general, organized. There are a variety of things that you can do to create a more organized life.


Writing down everything that you need to accomplish and remember throughout the day makes it easier for you to perform your daily tasks. Trying to remember everything that you need to achieve during the day can drain your energy. By creating lists, you eliminate the need to make an effort memorizing and remembering everything you have to do.

When you go grocery shopping, you need to make a list of the things that you need to buy so that you don’t have to expend energy trying to remember what you need. At the end of the day, create a list of the tasks that you need to accomplish the following day.

Another list you should consider making is one of your monthly expenses so that you can plan your budget. You can write your lists in a small notebook or organizer, or utilize one of the many organization apps for your smartphone. Whichever you choose, just make sure you’re creating your lists every day.


Another way you can better organize your life is by creating schedules and deadlines for all the things that you need to do. This can help you avoid wasting your time, which will give you the time you need to rest and relax and replenish your energy. If you aren’t able to manage your time effectively, you’ll only end up trying to finish everything at the last minutes which can make you feel exhausted.

By creating schedules and deadlines for yourself, you know what needs to be done, and you can focus your attention on one task at a time. It’s important to remember to set reasonable deadlines and schedules to avoid becoming more stressed and tired.


Falling into a habit of procrastination only makes your tasks more difficult when it’s time to complete them. Procrastinating just makes you more stressed because you have to rush things to meet the deadlines that you set for yourself. Procrastination will also cause you to produce low-quality results.

If you begin your tasks at the earliest possible time, you can take more time to complete them without having to finish them in a short amount of time. Also, when you can finish a task before its deadline, it gives you even more time to sit back and relax and replenish your energy.

When you create a schedule and set deadlines, it is crucial that you stick with it. To help eliminate fatigue you need to learn how to focus on completing the task at hand and avoid distractions, like checking your email, social media, or answering the phone.


While creating a schedule is a good thing, along to-do-list can become overwhelming. To avoid becoming fatigued at the thought of completing everything on your schedule, you need to learn how to prioritize. To help you prioritize the tasks that you need to complete, take a look at your list and decide which jobs have to be completed that day and which ones can be moved to another day.

For example, if its June and you included shopping for school supplies on your list of things to do, along with everything else that you need to finish, you may begin to feel overwhelmed and too exhausted by the time you reach the end of your list.

To fix this, move the task of shopping for school supplies, and other functions that you don’t need to complete right away, to another day, giving you the time to complete the tasks with the nearest deadline.


Another way to keep your life organized is to de-clutter your workspace. Getting rid of clutter at your desk will help you become more efficient throughout the day. Before you leave for the day, make it a point to clear off the surface of your desk, making sure to put everything back where it belongs. Don’t leave files and folders piled on top of your desk.

Instead, designate a tray for all your incoming and outgoing documents. Place any materials that you don’t need immediately into a file cabinet. It will be much easier for you to work when everything is put in its proper place, so you don’t have to waste time searching for items you need.


If you want to have a place to rest and relax, then you’ll have to de-clutter your home. A clean and well-organized house will make it much easier for you to relax your tired mind and body. Having a cluttered home will only lead to you feeling more stressed out and tired, which can be a contributing factor to your fatigue and exhaustion. You have to get rid of your home’s clutter if you want to work toward eliminating fatigue from your life.

While it will take some time and effort up front, de-cluttering your home now will be well worth it when you can finally eliminate fatigue from your life. Start by going through your things and getting rid of anything that you no longer need or have any use for, like old clothes, toys, DVDs, or books.

You can either donate the items to charity or hold a yard sale. If you find things that are broken and that are beyond repair, throw them out. At the end of the day, you only want to have items in your home that you still use.

To keep your house clutter-free, you need to have a place to put everything. You should utilize shelves, drawers, and cabinets to minimize the clutter and make it easier to find what you are looking for. You also want to limit the number of things that you purchase. Before you buy anything, you need to ask yourself if it is something that you really need.


Another great way to stop yourself from becoming fatigued is to delegate tasks. Understanding that you don’t have to do everything yourself can be extremely beneficial in reducing exhaustion and enhancing your energy. You can delegate tasks both at work and in your personal life.

If you are a manager of a supervisor, learn how to delegate tasks to your employees appropriately. When you are at home, enlist the help of your kids and other household members to complete chores. It is vital that you make sure that you also take care of your responsibilities and not depend on others to do everything for you.


To prevent fatigue, you need to learn what your limitations are both physically and mentally. It is important that you learn how to say ‘no’ if you don’t think that you can take on any more tasks or responsibilities.

You don’t have to work overtime whenever your boss asks you to, and you don’t have to participate in every social engagement that comes up. You need to learn how to pay attention to your body and learn how to decline invitations and requests politely.



If you want to avoid fatigue, then you need to learn about the different stress management techniques that can help you manage your emotions. When stress is left unmanaged, it can quickly drain you of all your energy.

Extreme levels of stress can be hazardous if you don’t take the time to deal with the issue immediately. It can affect your cognitive function and energy levels, as well as changing the overall quality of your life. It is imperative if you want to eliminate fatigue and enhance your energy to learn how to minimize stress in your life.


Most of the stress that we experience in our lives is self-induced. If you want to combat stress and eliminate fatigue from your life, then you have to avoid being too hard on yourself.

Avoid burning the candle at both ends. Take the time to relax and recharge yourself and avoid working too hard and pushing yourself to the point of extreme exhaustion.


Many people continuously aim for perfectionism. The problem with this is that you are continually setting yourself up to fail by setting unrealistic standards for yourself. One of the most powerful ways you can deal with stress and anxiety in your life is to drop the notion of perfectionism.

However, you always want to remember to try your hardest and do the best you can each time you focus on a task. The important part is recognizing that your best is good enough.


This life is complicated enough as it is, don’t add to your stress by taking life and yourself too seriously. If you aim to live a happy and stress-free life, you have to develop a great sense of humor. It is vital that you learn to laugh at yourself.

There is always something funny in every situation that you find yourself in, even the most difficult circumstances. Finding the humor in life will help you feel better and will instantly increase your energy.


Enlist the help of a professional. Talking to someone about your life, both the good and bad aspects of it, can help you manage your stress and increase the amount of energy you have every day.

Speaking with a professional can help you realize that you aren’t alone in your fears and problems. Talking to someone that you trust can be incredibly therapeutic and help you learn how to manage your stress better.


To avoid spreading yourself too thin and avoid excess stress, it is essential that you are clear about what you want to achieve. Start setting clear goals in every area of your life, including personal development, career, finances, health, and relationships. Knowing exactly what you need to do to achieve your goals will keep you from becoming overly stressed and exhausted.


There are going to be things that come up in your life that you can’t control. If you want to live a happy, stress-free, and high energy life, then you need to focus your energy on those things in your life that you can control and learn to let go of the things that you can’t control.


When you are feeling stressed or overly fatigued, taking a few slow, deep breaths will help you to relax. Take a moment to breathe in as far as you can, and exhale as much as you can. Do this 3-5 times, slowly, and you will feel the effects on your stress levels and fatigue immediately.

Aside from managing your stress, you need to learn how to control your emotions if you want to eliminate fatigue and enhance your energy. Negative emotions, like anger, jealousy, resentment, and guilt will drain your energy and increase your levels of anxiety, fatigue, and result in depression.

Negative emotions can expend all your energy, and it can suck out all the positivity in your life. Learning how to control your emotions will reduce your fatigue and increase your energy.


If you always feel guilty about things that you’ve done in the past, you will only increase your levels of exhaustion and stress. You have to learn to forgive yourself for your past mistakes and misgivings if you want to live a life free of stress and fatigue.

When you learn to forgive yourself, you will see an immediate increase in your vitality and energy, as well as improved health.


One of the quickest ways to drain your energy and create anxiety in your life is to hold onto grudges. For you to increase your energy and vitality, you have to learn to forgive those who have hurt you in the past.

Forgiving them doesn’t mean that you are condoning their actions and it doesn’t mean that you have to welcome them back into your life. Forgiveness simply means that you are ready to let go of the past hurt and that you are prepared to live the life that you deserve.


You may feel like you want to please everyone around you. However, trying to please everyone, all the time can become incredibly frustrating and lead to increased levels of stress and fatigue. If you want to improve your emotions and increase your energy, you need to create healthy personal boundaries.

Engaging in people-pleasing behavior often drains your energy because you end up spreading yourself too thin. Remember, it’s okay to say no to requests that don’t serve your best interests.

Creating healthy personal boundaries is one of the most powerful ways that you can prevent stress in your life and eliminate fatigue.

You have to learn how to manage your stress and emotions if you want to live a high energy life. If you find it impossible to avoid some stressful situations, then it is in your best interest to deal with these situations as lightly and as objectively as you can.


When facing chronic fatigue, the first thing that you should do is rule out any medical condition that you may have. If you do have one of the many medical conditions that contribute to chronic fatigue, the best thing you can do is take your doctor’s advice and follow any treatment plan they recommend.

If a medical condition has been ruled out as a reason for your constant fatigue, then it’s likely that your current lifestyle is contributing to your exhaustion. The good news is that it can be reversed and you can increase your energy, both physically and mentally.

Focusing on changing your lifestyle and doing what you can to eliminate stress from your life will help you to enhance your energy and rebuild your vitality, removing fatigue from your life for good.

While you probably won’t be able to markedly change your entire lifestyle overnight, you can easily concentrate on a few of the more important things first. Even the smallest changes in your lifestyle will help to improve your energy, allowing you to continue to make positive changes to your lifestyle that will affect your everyday life.

To effectively combat fatigue and enhance your energy, you just need to take things one day at a time and focus on becoming a better version of yourself. Each small change that you make will have a significant impact on your overall health, energy, and vitality. You don’t have to continue to live with exhaustion and fatigue.

Making simple changes in your daily life and diet, can help you find the energy you need to make it through your days. There is nothing like being able to live a full and productive live with enough energy to get through even the most challenging of tasks.

Boosting Productivity

Time Management – In and Out

Productivity and Time Management

Ask any successful business or individual out there, and I’m sure they will tell you higher levels of productivity are a crucial aspect in ensuring revenue growth and achieving success.

In fact, many individuals and corporations willingly invest large sums of money and effort in order to improve in this area. Higher levels of productivity in individuals (whether as part of an organization or alone) helps to bring them closer to their success targets within a shorter time period, and prevents needless wastage of time, money and effort.

The dictionary defines productivity as “the quality, state, or fact of being able to generate, create, enhance, or bring forth goods and services”. To explain it simply on a more individual level – it is just how much one can get done in a set period of time.

And when productivity is mentioned, time management is usually also brought up ; they go hand in hand. Both are strongly correlated – higher levels of productivity is usually the result of better time management.

All That You Know About Time Management Is Wrong

Yup, you got that right.

Your understanding of time management is very likely… wrong.

Time management is in fact, a misnomer. Time cannot be managed or influenced; it is something that is pretty much out of our control. All of us, despite our social or financial background, are allocated 24 hours in a day, no more or less. Once gone, there’s no way we can get it back.

Our day-to-day responsibilities – be it family or work, takes up a large portion of our time. Not only that, time is fleeting and so easily robbed from our hands. Unexpected things pop up all the time. Priorities change. Things go terribly wrong. You get sick, or tired.

You can only do so much – you’re only human, after all.

You can, however control YOU. And your CHOICES. Time management is more correctly, all about self-discipline and task management. It’s the management of expectations as well as interruptions. It is the ability to manage your actions, habits and priorities based on the time you are given. It is understanding what matters most, making a choice to make room for that in your life, and getting rid of the unnecessary, unimportant stuff that’s hogging up your valuable time.

Also, time management is not a one system fits all method. There is no perfect method. Different individuals have different styles – we’re all wired differently in terms of personality type, identity and individual life circumstances. Some may find that a to-do list works for them; others may find to-do lists hard to follow and demotivating. It’s all about finding your groove – different strokes for different folks.

Multitasking because you want to manage time better? Bad idea. Contrary to popular belief, faster and more is NOT always better. Multitasking is one way to destroy your productivity levels.

Sure… you seem to get more done this way.

However, you are probably more likely to make mistakes – which will result in you doing over things. Stick to focusing on one task at a time, and taking sufficient breaks whenever possible – you’ll stand to accomplish more this way. Now, we’ve mentioned that juggling multiple tasks at one time is counterproductive. However, striving to complete each task no matter how long it takes is also not a wise idea when it comes to time management – another common misconception regarding time management. Restrict your time spent on a task, and schedule accordingly.

As you can see, a lot of what we know regarding time management are in fact, myths. Many of us have skewed perceptions or are misinformed when it comes to time management. These myths, over time, through the people around us or the media we consume, become deeply ingrained within our mindsets; we eventually regard them as facts and hold on to them. As a result, we are prevented from becoming truly and fully productive in any aspect of our lives.

Chapter 01: Effectiveness Vs. Efficiency

Effectiveness versus efficiency.

Both terms are adjectives that begin with the letter ‘e’, and are used to describe how work is done. Not only that, they sound quite similar.

It is relatively easy to mistake one for the other, or use them interchangeably (a lot of people do!). However, these terms are anything but similar – in fact, they each carry completely different meanings.

Effectiveness is all about doing the right things; it is result oriented. It is when one’s objectives are in line with their main goals, and indirectly your purpose.

It is finding ways to improve outcomes. For example, if your goal is to increase awareness and sales of a particular product to reach a particular target, you should engage in tasks or activities that will help move you closer to your goals (eg. marketing and ads, in this scenario) , and not waste time on irrelevant tasks that do not serve your goals. This makes you effective.

Efficiency, however, is more about doing things right; this aspect is task oriented. It is using better ways to get something done well in the shortest amount of time possible, while utilizing the least amount of resources and/or costs. An example of efficiency would be using a computerized system to get things done accurately in a shorter span of time; as opposed to relying on manual methods to do the same thing, which is susceptible to human error and is more time consuming.

Either one can exist without the other; one can be effective but not efficient, and vice versa. It is entirely possible for one to be effective in achieving their goals, while being inefficient in the way they do it. It is also entirely possible to be none of both at all.

In fact, there are four possibilities:

  1. Effective and Efficient
  • Effective and Inefficient
  • Ineffective and Efficient
  • Ineffective and Inefficient

It should be noted however that true, optimal productivity is a combination of both efficiency and effectiveness (Number 1) – the Holy Grail for every individual or organization.

It is not possible for an organization or person to reach peak productivity levels, if they are lacking in either efficiency or effectiveness (Number 2, 3 and 4). If anything, they’re setting themselves up for either mediocrity or inevitable failure.

Effectiveness > Efficiency

In terms of order of importance, effectiveness should be prioritized over efficiency in all your considerations about productivity.

This however does not mean that you should disregard the importance of efficiency altogether – again, as mentioned earlier, productivity is a balanced combination of both.

Effectiveness involves the big picture. Putting effectiveness first just means that you should first and foremost focus on doing the right things in order to improve your chances of getting a good outcome.

Once you get yourself on track and laid out the basics, you can then look into how you can improve the way you do things. The logic here is to concentrate on being efficient at the tasks which are significant and are effective in contributing to your goals. There’s no point in particularly efficient when the tasks you carry out do not contribute to your purpose and goals.

To sum things up : efficiency is a modifier for effectiveness, not a substitute.

Efficiency is meaningless on its own.

The problem with most people is that they tend to gravitate towards efficiency, rather than effectiveness. It is perfectly understandable – being efficient is a whole lot easier than being effective. Being efficient involves improvements on a smaller, more manageable scale; effectiveness however requires a whole lot of brainstorming about one’s goals, values and different approaches, on a larger scale. And that is intimidating.

Not only that, people who put efficiency before effectiveness have this tendency of looking for better and perfect ways of doing things, and head nowhere instead – which ironically, leads to ineffectiveness.

Increasing Effectiveness

So how does one increase their effectiveness?

Put some time aside to evaluate these few things :

Clarify the What– focusing on the results you want to achieve and defining the picture of success.

Clarify and pursue key strategies that will give you the highest possibility for success.

Now that you’ve established your plan of action, you can focus on how to increase your efficiency. This would mean concentrating on the How’s – implementation of your strategies in the most efficient way possible, and improving how you do things as you go along.

In the coming chapters, we will look into further detail on this, as well as many other helpful tips that will skyrocket your productivity to optimum levels.

Chapter 02: Expediting Success

To embark on a major journey, you should first have a real idea of your destination.

This way, you’ll be able to plan adequately for your journey – directions, mode of transport, estimated costs, time, etc.

Skip that, and you’d end up wandering aimlessly. Or find yourself lost somewhere in middle of Timbuktu. Sure, you’re on a journey alright…but where?

Similarly, when it comes to planning for your success, you will need a “destination” and a “roadmap”. That would be a clear vision of what you want, and specific goals to help you on your way to achieve your idea of success.


Creating A Vision

To be truly effective in your pursuit for success, you should first be able to visualize your “destination” – a clear vision of where you want to be in the future. It’s what you desire, your passion, your purpose in doing something.

Creating a vision is important. It’s the very thing that gives you direction, a compass that directs you in making the best decisions, and taking the right actions that will propel you towards success. It’s what gets you excited and motivated to push beyond your self-imposed boundaries. It’s what keeps you focused and on top of the game.

To begin, take some time to envision how you see your life in your ideal future. Reflect on your passions, core principles and values you live by, and your purpose in life.

Remember to define your vision – make sure your vision is specific and clear. It is your starting point – the very foundation you will be building on. It is the ideal you will be striving for, to get close to.

It should be something that is in line with your values and principles, as well as your view of the future. Simply coming up with a vague vision of wanting to be “wealthy” or “popular” is not enough ; it should be something more solid and specific.

An example here would be:

To be financially free by age 30. To work only 30 hours a week.

To be a healthier individual – both mentally and physically.

You can also think of the people you admire and look up to – the kind of characteristics or habits you wish to emulate yourself. In fact, you can even ask them to be your mentor, to help you think things through on certain areas and advise you on what has worked for them.

Again, don’t restrain yourself too much when creating your own vision. Your vision is personal and unique – there is no right or wrong. It’s something that only you can decide for yourself, and this also is dependent on what you want to achieve in life.

Remember, the point of creating a vision is to know your reason for doing something, and to help you be more focused and motivated.

Setting Your Goals

But simply envisioning the future is not enough – that just reduces your vision to little more than a glorious daydream.

Visions will remain unattainable when not coupled with goals. And this is where goals come in.

Goals are more specific and quantifiable targets – it’s the “roadmap” to your journey of success. They act as benchmarks or milestones, aiding you in laying the path for the rightful achievement of your vision. This also includes the tactics as well as strategies you use to work towards your vision.

To explain it in simply, goals are a tool to help you take conscious steps each day to help you realize your vision.

Again, I have to emphasize here that a solid, clear vision first is important. The goals you set and work towards achieving should be in line with your vision. This keeps you focused on the big picture as to why you should complete your goals.

A good approach to use when it comes to setting your goals is the S.M.A.R.T.E.R approach to goal setting.

S.M.A.R.T.E.R is an acronym that stands for:


Measurable Achievable Relevant

Time Boxing Evaluation Readjust

Here’s a detailed elaboration this approach.

1. Specific

Your goal should be specific and crystal clear – you should be able to know what success looks like here. The more specific you can get, the better. A good tip here is to ask yourself the 5 W questions below :

What do I want to accomplish? Why is this goal important?

Who is involved?

Where is it located?

Which resources or limits are involved?

  • Measurable

The goals you set for yourself should be measurable and quantifiable. This is so you can track your progress and performance properly. Being able to see progress is a great motivator – it gets you excited knowing that you are well on your way to success. Not only that, this helps your focus.

3. Achievable

A successful goals should be one that is realistic and achievable. Lying to yourself and aiming for a goal that is beyond your abilities will only result in failure to reach that goal.

That being said – this is not an excuse for you to be complacent here. You should set goals that will stretch your abilities but also remain possible for you to achieve.

Also, you should consider factors that will affect the achievability of the goal, like financial and time constraints.

4. Relevant

Your goal should be relevant. It should matter to you, and also be aligned with your other goals and vision. This step keeps you from focusing on the wrong things.

5. Time-Bound

Every goal you set should have a deadline – this gives you something to work towards. However, aiming to hit a goal in 5 to 7 years is not considered a proper deadline. Sure, it contains a time element – but it’s not specific enough.

Your plan to reach a goal in 5 years will be quite different from your plan to reach a goal within 7 years.

Setting a more specific date for your goals allows you to develop a clearer plan to achieve it. This also prevents you from letting other everyday matters take priority over your goals.

6. Evaluate

Over time, things happen and goals change. Look over your goals from time to time and evaluate them ; check if they need changing to fit your current situation. Constant evaluation of you goals is essential for you to reach your goals.

7. Revise

Upon evaluation, if you find that your goals need readjusting, revise them accordingly.

Chapter 03: The Action-Plan to Success

Every success story comes from perfect planning. It is harder to achieve success from simply going at it and hoping for the best. This is because you might encounter snags along the way and don’t have any ways to overcome it.

It is baffling why some succeed and some fail. Sometimes it may even seem unfair. You may know friends and family who are fantastic people, act appropriately, have good education, have good jobs, lead good families and generally possess the good things in life. But somehow they still wallow in desperation and difficulty.

Then there are those who always achieve so much success and yet do not have high merits. They have no education, poor attitude about themselves and other people, often dishonest and unethical, and even involved in a cycle of breakups and new partners. In these cases, the actual defining factor is the strength of one’s desire to get ahead. Despite their lack of virtues, knowledge and appreciation, these people often got ahead in the success race.

This is also why many times you see drug dealers and gang members driving Lamborghinis, while many good and honest people you know are struggling to pay their bills. If the desire is strong enough to achieve the goals, why still many do not?

The sad answer is there is only desire, but no work. Oftentimes many dream big but do not hustle and put in the work. They do not stay up late at night developing new solutions to their problems. They do not work 16 hours a day closing a sale. They do not struggle to ensure the prospects they approach turn into qualified clients. They do. They do not learn all that they possibly can about our industry and our markets. They do not work to get around the right sources of influence, or to associate with those people who can help them to achieve their goals. While you are sitting there dreaming, some are getting of their seats and working.

So, what are the steps to develop a plan that will work amazingly and take you to the finish line strongly? Here are the five major points to keep in mind:


Step 1: Develop The Right Plan For You.

Some people are very detail-oriented and are able to closely follow an intricate plan to the letter. Others are more effective when they see the bigger picture first and then frame out the small steps that lead to the final goal.

Each of us is unique and motivated by different factors and you’ve got to develop a plan that is right for you and fits you. Some plans will not be as intricate as others, but we all must have a plan, along with goals in that plan, to move us along. If you are a free spirit, don’t tell yourself you are going to spend two hours a day with a book and a journal. It probably won’t happen and you will just get discouraged. Whatever your personality, your strengths and your weaknesses, develop the plan around them. This is not a one-plan-fits-all proposition.

If you’re detail-oriented, it’s best to map out the small steps in your plan with utmost focus. This means being very clear on what you want to achieve daily, weekly or monthly. For example, the first small step to achieving your ideal weight is to cut out 1 serving of sweetened drinks by the end of Week 1.

For those who like to see the bigger picture first, it helps if you imagine how it will be if you’re, say, 20 pounds lighter. You may be able to get out of bed easier, your energy level will rise, and you will fit into those apparels that you yearn to wear. Then, map out what you need to do in order to achieve that.

Step2: Allocate The Time For It.

This is crucial in your planning, because you’ll be clearer on when you should commit on achieving your goals. In this case, let’s use back the weight-loss goal.

It might be alternating aerobics and weight training every other weekend. It might be running 30 minutes each morning or swimming after work. It might be in the car listening to weight loss motivational podcasts on your way to work, or it might even be meeting your coach once a week to set your workout plan and to check on your progress.

Whatever it is, be specific on the where, when and how to do it, and actually do it. In your step-by-step plan, put down points that represents small achievable goals that you can accomplish in a short time. They should be specific because if you straightaway put down a major goal, you may think it’s too big to achieve.

The next crucial element in achieving your goals to success is not starting to work on it, but to keep going at it. Discipline comes into important play here. Take those steps every day, which will close the gap to your goals.

Step 3: Keep A Journal

Two words that will help you a lot: Take Notes. In all seriousness, your memory should not be trusted. It’s much better and workable when you write it down, and write it in a single place so it’s easier for you to remind yourself where you’re heading to and what success have you achieved. You will find that this step will help you tremendously in the long run.

Record everything! Be it the ideas and inspiration or reminders and failures that you have gone through. This massively helps carry you from where you are to where you want to be. Write down the ideas that you get from outside sources that impact you most. Complement them with your own ideas that further suit your style. Do a brainstorm session with yourself on what you want and how you want to do it. And finally, record all your dreams and ambitions, and put it where you’ll read them first so you stay reminded and motivated.

Your journals are a gathering place for all the valuable information that you will find. If you come across something that you think will hugely help you achieve, for example, wealth, power, sophistication, health, influence, culture or uniqueness, do not delay. Write it down. Strengthen your reflection and motivation by using the information you gather and put it where it will be recorded permanently.

Step 4: Reflect on Where You Are and Where You Want To Be

Next step is to make the time for reflection. This is where you spend some time to go back over, to study again the things you’ve learned and the things you’ve done each day. This can also be called ‘running the tapes again’ so the day locks firmly in your memory and serves as a tool for motivation and keeps you going.

As you go through it, spend time reflecting on its significance to you. What you can do is take a few minutes at the end of each day before you go to sleep, and go back over what happened and you have achieved during the day: pay extra attention to who you talked to, who you saw, what they said, what happened and how you felt.

Another way is to take a longer time at the end of the week to reflect on the week’s activities and achievements. It also pays to periodically stop, step back and look at what you’re doing and see if it serves to push you to your goal or otherwise. Then tweak it a bit so you are kept on track. Take a half day at the end of the month and a weekend at the end of the year so that you’ve got it, so that it never disappears, to ensure that the past is even more valuable and will serve your future well.

Step 5: Set Clear and Achievable Goals

Remember that your plan is the roadmap that shows the way to your goals, which means it is always an essential tool that helps you to succeed. Setting goals is also an invaluable skill to learn because it can change your life for the better, and does it in the fastest way. Mastering this unique process can have a powerful effect on your life, too. If you have a set of clearly defined goals, it can surprisingly be a powerful indication of telling if you have only hundreds of dollars or millions in the bank! If you don’t have them yet, better to frame them out immediately so you have a lucid view of your future and dreams. Set your own goals clearly as soon as possible because it is the greatest influence on your future and the greatest force that will pull you in the direction that they want to go. It all boils down to this: If you plan and design your goals well, your future will be very bright.

Step 6: Act on It!

So what still holds you back from your success? You have a very strong desire to do it already, and you have already created a plan that will take you there.

The next step?

Take action! Here’s the thing: successful people aren’t necessarily smarter than others; they just work the plan to the letter, they follow through on the plan and ensure the plan serves them to reach greater heights.

The best time to act on your plan is when your emotions are strong. There’s a little thing called The Law of Diminishing Intent. This essentially means your desires diminish over time, and if you don’t act immediately after having the desire, your goals are harder to achieve. Act when the idea strikes you, when the emotion is high, but if we delay and we don’t translate that into action fairly soon, the intention starts to diminish, diminish and a month from now its cold and a year from now it can’t be found. This is where discipline comes to play – work the plan when the idea is strong, clear and powerful. You must capture the emotion and put it into disciplined activities and translate it into strong unrelenting action.

Chapter 04: Supercharge your Productivity

High productivity is a major goal for many people, because more things can get done if you are in a high-productivity environment. While this concept may seem simple, to fully understand what it means to increase productivity, the definition cannot be taken literally. You actually must develop a stronger understanding of this concept wholly and use it to your advantage fully.

To put it in simple terms high productivity means that you are putting out products more quickly or completing tasks at higher speed than before. Theoretically, it made sense – the more products someone produces or services the person completes, the more positive results come in, making increased productivity a high priority for many workplace environments.

There are some things, however, that studies say cause your productivity at work to plummet, such as unfavorable environment, distractions and plain old procrastination

You cannot always control your environment, but the good news is you can control what you get done. Plus, you can learn from others to be even more productive. There are probably more direct ways to help your productivity increase such as a conducive environment or closing the Facebook tab on your browser, But these are small hacks that actually only do so much. There are more meaningful ways to be your best. And you can learn these skills by taking some cues from the world’s most successful people.

Have Big Goals in Mind

Firstly, you can set big goals and then act to fully accomplish them. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is a master at this, making room each year for a new challenge, which he says allows him to “learn new things and grow outside my work at Facebook.” And it pays! He’s now fluent in Mandarin and is meeting new people all the time.

Looking at it backwards can help too, link Amazon’s Jeff Bezos does. He makes room for big goals by starting with the customer’s needs and working backward to build skills to get that work done faster. As Bezos said it, “We learn whatever skills we need to service the customer. We build whatever technology we need to service the customer.”

Give Each Day A Theme

Try copying CEO Jack Dorsey for this. When splitting his time between Square and Twitter, he stays productive by giving each day a theme — Mondays for management, Tuesdays for product, etc. As he explains, “There is interruption all the time, but I can quickly deal with an interruption and then know that it’s Tuesday, I have product meetings, and I need to focus on product stuff.”

Another tip you can use is the “no-meeting Wednesdays” Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz believes that this gives him and his team a good amount of time each week for “focused, heads-down work.”

Set Limits

You can only spend so much time focusing on something. After that, it’s time to move on to the next important thing. For example, former Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn sets only allocates 1 and a half hours to on single-purpose, non-operational meetings, with half the time for presentation and the other half for discussions.

Another thing you can limit is the length of your emails. The Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg says she responds to every single work email, but she saves time by keeping the responses short. “I would rather give a short, quick, incomplete answer than wait and do it better,” she says.

Deep Work Zone

Focus, focus, focus. This is perhaps most important productivity secret. Bill Gates would set time for Deep Work, where he would allocate time each week to do his most challenging work without any distractions — no stopping, not even for sleep. Cal Newport, author of the book “Deep Work” said, “Deep work is important … not because distraction is evil, but because it enabled Bill Gates to start a billion-dollar industry in less than a semester.”

Streamline Decisions

Jeff Bezos makes a lot of decisions every day. Since this can be time-consuming, he’s developed a four-step process for navigating his business more quickly. First, One-size-fits-all decisions are a no-no. “Many decisions are reversible, two-way doors,” he writes in his letter to shareholders. “Those decisions can use a light-weight process.”Second, make the decision when you are at 70% of your intended information. “If you wait for 90% …you’re probably being slow,” he writes.

Disagree and commit. “This phrase will save a lot of time,” he writes. “If you have conviction on a particular direction even though there’s no consensus, it’s helpful to say, ‘Look, I know we disagree on this but will you gamble with me on it? Disagree and commit?’ By the time you’re at this point, no one can know the answer for sure, and you’ll probably get a quick yes.”

And fourth, address the real misalignments early and focus on them immediately. “Sometimes teams have different objectives and fundamentally different views,” he writes. “They are not aligned. No amount of discussion, no number of meetings will resolve that deep misalignment. Without escalation, the default dispute resolution mechanism for this scenario is exhaustion.”

Get To Work Before Everyone Else

The early bird catches the worm. Try starting work before everyone wakes. Like 4 am like Sallie Krawcheck, CEO of the digital financial platform Ellevest. The reason is “The most precious commodity in business is time. And I find I am most productive when I balance time that I spend with others with blocks of time during which I can think, write and —my favorite — build earnings models,” she writes.

She further elaborated that at this time, “My mind is clear, not yet caught up in the multiple internal conversations that we all conduct with ourselves once we gear up for our first meeting of the day. And there’s a peace that comes from knowing that my family is all in bed and safe upstairs while I work. It is at this time of day that I often have a rush of ideas (some of them are actually good).”

Protect Your Time

Instead on starting the day with important tasks, Keller Williams Realty founder Gary Keller blocks out the first few hours of his day to work on his most important task for the year—his “one thing.”

This is because this one thing, when tackled, will make everything easier to do or unnecessary. Keller has used this to write books and grow his company to the largest real estate franchise. Keller also believes that until this one thing is done, anything else is a can impair it. “The key is time. Success is built sequentially. It’s one thing at a time,” he writes in “The One Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth behind Extraordinary Results”.

Close Virtual Doors

Open work environments opens up many good possibilities but also can hinder productivity with unnecessary distractions and interruptions. Michael Pryor, former CEO of Trello, encourages workers to close virtual doors by turning off Slack and email, and by putting a Post-It note on their desk that says “heads down.”

Interruptions are weird. They leech time from important projects and take a while to recover from. “Every time you switch contexts, there’s this huge cost associated with that,” Pryor said in an interview with Time. “Our time is limited, essentially. Your trick is to be able to ration

that resource for all the things you need to do, and that’s the hardest part of being productive.”

Separate Work And Personal Life

This may seem counterintuitive or even obvious to some, but it’s nonetheless as important as anything. YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki makes being home in time for dinner with family a priority. Leaving the office on time helps her consolidates her work and get it done more rapidly, so when she is home, she can focus on her family without any distractions

“We try to have the rule to not check email between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m., because if you are on your phone then it’s hard to disconnect,” Wojcicki said in an interview with the Wall Street Journal.

Pulling the plug when the time comes can actually help you stay productive, creative and your pursuit to success a surety. “[Success] is not based on the number of hours that you’ve worked,” Wojcicki says. “If you are working 24/7, you’re not going to have any interesting ideas.”

Clear Out Your Inbox Everyday

“Email is unidirectional—anyone, at any time, can just go to your inbox without permission, invitation or consideration, Elliot Weissbluth, CEO of HighTower, writes on LinkedIn. “Empowering the world to demand a thin slice of your attention is more than unfair—it’s a recipe for constant distraction.”

He uses three rules to simplify things and keep him focused and productive

  1. Unsubscribe from newsletters. It takes more time than simply deleting, but actually saves hours every year.
  • Delete and completely forget about it. “When in doubt, delete. If it’s that important, someone will follow up with you. Then respond to what you can and move the rest to recycling” he writes.
  • Don’t bother filing. Use a good search tool to scan your folders and find things you need instantly.

“If you do nothing else but these three things, your inbox will be a lot leaner,” he writes. “Whatever messages are left become a to-do list of the items that actually need your care and attention. Keep this list short, between two and five items, or what you can actually hope to achieve on any given day. Get those items done and you’ve just reached Inbox Zero.”

It might seem unorthodox that some steps make you seem less productive. But again, it is more than simply cranking out more than you usually do. Being productive is not only being efficient. It also means you are effective in your work, where you take steps to completely turn problems into solutions that make extra work unnecessary.

Chapter 05: Why Energy Is Everything?

To effectively reenergize yourself, you need to shift your emphasis from to investing more in yourself, so you stay motivated and able to bring more to the table. You need to recognize energy-depleting behaviors and then take active steps in changing them or deleting them altogether.

Energy is very important when you’re aiming for high productivity. If you look at successful people and ask them how they do it, they will always say energy as one of their main drives to success. Defined in physics as the capacity to work, energy comes from four main sources in you: your body, emotions, mind, and spirit.

The Body

It is no news that improper nutrition, exercise, sleep, and rest affect your energy levels, emotion management and focus. Nonetheless, you may be guilty of ignoring ways to practice healthy behaviors, given all the other demands in your life.

You may be doing things such as skipping breakfast, failing to express appreciation to others, struggling to focus on one thing at a time, or spending too little time on activities that give them a sense of purpose. While it is not surprising that these behaviors are counterproductive, having them all listed in one place can become uncomfortable, sobering, and galvanizing. This may sound harsh, but is actually a necessary first step to restoring your body energy.

The next step is to identify rituals for building and renewing physical energy. Gary Faro, a vice president at Wachovia was significantly overweight, ate poorly, lacked a regular exercise routine, worked long hours, and typically slept no more than five or six hours a night.

Faro began exercising with cardio and strength training. He also starts to go to bed at a regular time and sleeps longer. He changed his meals from two big ones a day to small meals every three hours. The aim is to stabilize glucose levels over the course of the day, avoiding peaks and valleys.

And the result?

Faro lost 50 pounds and his energy levels soared.

Another way to restore energy is taking brief, regular breaks at specific intervals throughout the workday. We have “Ultradian rhythms” which refers to 90- to 120-minute cycles during which our bodies swing through high and low energy states. At the end of each cycle, the body displays a need of recovery like restlessness, yawning, hunger, and being unfocused. Usually this gets ignored and in turn burns down your energy reservoir faster.

If done properly, intermittent breaks can increase and sustain performance. It is possible to recover well in a short time if it involves a ritual that allows you to separate briefly from work and let your mind rest. You can talk to a colleague about something other than work, listen to music, or walk up and down stairs.

The Emotion

When you can take more control of your emotions, you can massively improve the quality of your energy. To do this, you must become aware of how you feel at various points of time and its effect on your effectiveness.

People tend to perform best when they’re feeling positive energy, and won’t perform well vice versa. Unfortunately, people tend to slip into negative emotions and trigger their fight-or-flight mechanism when met with relentless demands and unexpected challenges. The signs may be irritability impatience, anxiety and insecurity. These are big culprits in draining your energy.

One ritual for erasing negative emotions is “buying time”. You can take deep abdominal breaths and exhale slowly for 10 seconds to relax and recover, and defuse your fight-or-flight response.

Expressing appreciation to others is a practice which is as beneficial to the giver as to the receiver. It can take the form of a handwritten note, an e-mail, a call, or a conversation. The more detailed and specific the appreciation given, the higher the impact. To achieve higher success at doing this, like any other rituals, set aside some time to do it.

Finally, you can change the stories you tell yourself about the events in your life. You can see this often, people casting themselves in the role of a victim instead of being thankful of what they have.

This is powerful because you are more aware of the difference between the facts and the way you interpret it. This may seem obvious but you can actually discover that you have a choice about how to view something and recognize how powerfully your story influences your emotions.

To change a perception to a story you want to tell, view it through any of three alternatives, represented by lenses. With the reverse lens, ask yourself what the others involved will say and are they actually true. With the long lens, look at how it impacts you in the future. With the wide lens, ask yourself how can you improve and learn from this.

The Mind

Multitasking, while sounding and looking cool, actually undermines productivity. This is because a temporary shift in attention from one task to another increases the amount of time to finish a task by as much as 25%.You are likelier to be more efficient to fully focus for 90 to 120 minutes, take a true break, and then fully focus on the next activity. This focus and break cycle is called “Ultradian Sprints”.

Once you can see how much you struggle to concentrate, you can combat this by creating rituals to reduce the interruptions that bother you. Start out with an exercise that makes you face the impact of your daily distractions.

A real-life example is from Dan Cluna, a vice president at Wachovia, who designed 2 rituals to increase focus. The first one is to leave his desk and go into a conference room whenever he has a task that requires concentration to stop distractions from phone calls.

The result is he finishes reports in a third of the time. The second is by not picking up any phone calls in meetings with the people who report to him. This is because it stretched the time of the meetings and cost his full attention. He now only answers the voice-mail messages in his downtime.

Here’s another method to Instead of replying your emails as soon as they come in, set time to answer them at specific times of the day. This actually can allow you to clear your inbox faster if you fully focus on your emails for 45 minutes at a time.

Another way to mobilize mental energy is to focus systematically on activities that impact you the most in the long term. Identify the most important challenge for the next day and make it their very first priority when you arrive at work in the morning.


The Spirit

Your spirit is at your highest when your work and activities are consistent with what you value and have a sense of meaning and purpose the most. If the work you’re doing really matters to you, you will have more energy, focus, and perseverance.

However, the demands and pace of corporate life don’t leave much space for these issues, and many don’t even know that meaning and purpose are potential sources of energy. When you experience the value of the rituals you establish, you can start to see that being attentive to your own needs intensely influences their effectiveness and satisfaction at work.

Give yourself the opportunity to ask questions about what really mattered to you. You will find that these will be both illuminating and energizing. This can be highly important and thoughtful because it will really make you aware of what you want to be really remembered for.

To access the energy of the human spirit, you need to clarify priorities and establish rituals in three categories:

  1. Doing what you do best and enjoy most at work;
  • Consciously allocating time and energy to the areas of your life, like work, family, health, service to others that you deem most important;
  • And living your core values in your daily behaviors.

Chapter 06: Supercharged Productivity Hacks

There are 5 hacks you can employ in order to be on top of your productivity game:

1. Having A Game Plan

The basic principle of productivity is having a game plan. This is accomplished by having effective time-management. If you do not have a game-plan for getting it done, the results will not be satisfying. While procrastination and wasting time impede productivity, lack of effective time-management can be as destructive.

Increasing your productivity and getting things done means having a good game-plan. First, you need to know exactly what must be done. Second, even if you do not have a specific deadline, you must also decide when it must be done. The third step is putting yourself to the task of doing it.

You want to accomplish your goals, whether they are short-term or long-term. You also want to be proud of and satisfied with the results. When you are not content to simply “go with the flow,” and instead take your game-plan seriously every step of the way, you are nearly guaranteed of success, pride, and satisfaction.

Here are the 3 components of an effective game plan:

  1. Identify What Needs To Be Done

Firstly, you need to know exactly what needs to be done. For instance, if you have been assigned to prepare for a presentation as well as a meeting that will be held within the week. You have to be clear of the tasks at hand.

  1. Decide When It Must Be Done (Timeline)

Secondly, even if you do not have a specific deadline, you must set a timeframe for the task to be completed. When you have organized your workload, you are less likely to procrastinate and this will help you in prioritizing your tasks as well as managing your time.

  1. Do It

The third step is putting yourself to the task of doing it. There’s no use of all the planning and organizing if you do not take immediate action in completing the tasks.

2. What Should You Do First?

If you think about back when you were in school, you may remember teachers telling you that the best way to approach homework and other projects was to do the hardest task first. They may have also advised you to tackle the homework subject you disliked the most first, before moving on. This same approach can greatly enhance your productivity today.

Always start with a difficult task. When you begin your day, regardless at work or if you have countless assignments to be submitted before exams, try and put this approach to action.

Instead of beginning with a task you enjoy, or one which comes easily to you, start with one you dislike, or one which you feel will be quite difficult. At the end of the day, you may be pleasantly surprised with how much you have accomplished. You will also feel that the day has gone much smoother.

The explanation for this is because usually at the start of your day, you have more energy as compared to the end of the day. When you devote this energy to the hardest or most disliked tasks, you will not feel as drained or frustrated in doing them.

Secondly, if you begin with the easier tasks at hand first, you will be looking at your difficult upcoming tasks with negativity. This will no doubt cause your motivation to decline and you will dread the rest of your day.

This approach will increase your productivity. When you do not look at your work day as a long, uphill battle, you will get more accomplished. Getting the tasks you dislike out of the way first, early in the day, will generate better results with all of your tasks. Not only will you get more done, you will be much more satisfied with the outcome of each and every task.

3. Increasing Motivation

“Be miserable, or motivate yourself. Whatever has to be done, it’s always your choice”

We have all heard people say that they were “not motivated” as an excuse for not getting things done. In most cases, this is a polite way of saying that they are lazy. In the real world, where productivity and success are essential, motivation is a key element. If it does not come naturally to you, you need to examine ways to increase your own motivation, and put it into action every day. The more motivated you are, the more things you are able to accomplish.

One of the most practical steps you can adopt to get your motivation up and running is to enjoy and appreciate your accomplishments. Applaud yourself for completing every single task, regardless big or small. While you should not be distracted or side-tracked from your main focus, giving yourself the deserved credit as well as a figurative pat on the back will no doubt increase your motivation.

When you do this, it will also help to increase your stamina. Rather than feeling overwhelmed by one main goal on the horizon, which can leave you tired and stressed, it can make you feel more energetic and better prepared for the next task.

It is easy for a person to lose his sense of motivation when he feels that he is not accomplishing anything. This can result in him not feeling very good about what he does, and even doing less. Fortunately, it is not difficult to reverse this pattern and be back on track. When you get into the habit of feeling glad about every task you complete, and have pride in each and every accomplishment, it will increase your motivation to do even more, and to do better each time.

As motivation and energy are connected, you will also see that you have much more energy for all of the tasks in front of you. No matter how large your ultimate goal happens to be, or how much time and work you need to put into it to accomplish that particular goal, you will be pleasantly surprised at how much more smoothly it all progresses. As both your motivation and your energy increase, you will get more and more done. You will see how great productivity can be each day.

4. Setbacks Are Stepping Stones

Many people take setbacks negatively, and often times your perception towards setbacks is the biggest obstacle and hindrance of productivity. When you focus on how setbacks can only bring you down and does not serve as a stepping-stone for you to move forward, you will end up not doing anything at all.

Setbacks occur in all areas of life. Regardless of what type of job you have, you probably experience them either occasionally or on a regular basis. Setbacks can occur from making mistakes, from not being adequately prepared for what you need to do, or from unexpected problems which are not anyone’s fault. The way you experience and view a setback determines how it will affect you and your productivity.

However a setback occurs, there is one outlook which can prevent it from becoming a roadblock, and actually increase your productivity. Whether the setback was due to an error on your part, or whether it was no one’s fault, refusing to see it as a failure is the first step in getting you back on track.

Another way of viewing setbacks is by perceiving them as an opportunity for you to do better next time. If you have made a mistake on your part, own up to it, correct the mistake and move on. There’s no use of dwelling in the past as these can have repercussions.

You may beat yourself up about the mistake, or even obsess about it. These behaviors are never useful. Not only will they prevent you from getting things done, they will also cause you to feel bad about yourself. At its worst, it can lead you to feel incompetent. This is not the way to get things done.

Viewing each setback as a learning experience is the way to approach. Beating yourself up too much won’t get you anywhere. You should always remind yourself that you are capable of doing better, and capable of doing more. What you need to do is to correct the mistake, move on and make this pattern second nature to you. By doing this, setbacks will not bring you down and hinder your productivity.

5. Taking Care Of Yourself

If there’s one thing we usually neglect to do, is taking care of our own physical wellbeing. If you are like most people, you have probably had the experience of working all night to get something done. You may have gone without sleep, skipped meals, and other important factors in self-care, for the purpose of finishing a task or meeting a deadline. While it is sometimes necessary to do this, neglecting self-care on a regular or frequent basis will backfire. Your health may suffer while you are not accomplishing nearly as much as you had hoped.

Many of us disregard the fact that taking care of our health will also keep us productive. The person who goes without sleep on a regular basis, or relies on junk food instead of eating nutritious meals, will not be physically or mentally up to par. While you may believe that you are giving one hundred percent to your job, these unhealthy habits result in having less to give.

On the other hand, if you take care of yourself; getting sufficient sleep, keeping to a balanced diet, you will in turn contribute more to your work. When you are in top-notch condition, you will focus better, be more alert, and not become fatigued as easily. You will do better, and you will do more.

It is time to examine your lifestyle. Are you constantly depending on coffee or artificial energy boosters to keep you going? How about snacking on junk food? Are you getting enough sleep or are you constantly burning the midnight oil in order to complete your tasks? Try and reflect on these questions and if you find yourself leading an unhealthy lifestyle, it is high time for you to improve on it and observe how this has effected your day to day productivity.

Although nearly everyone is occasionally in the position of skipping a meal or working late into the night, if these have become habits for you it is not likely that they are helping you to become more productive. In fact, they are probably slowing you down.

Even if you have a fast-paced job with many responsibilities and deadlines, neglecting proper self-care is counterproductive. When you begin developing the habit of getting enough sleep and a proper diet, you will be doing more than taking care of yourself. You will get more done, and be more satisfied with the results. Always remember that overworking can backfire!

Chapter 07 – Being a One Man Army

When talking about productivity, few of us really tap into the power of leverage. We often hear the term ‘leverage’ when discussing investment and debt. However, leverage can be applied beyond that context, as it means to extend rewards or results and getting things done in a limited timeframe. When you have too much on your plate and you need to get things done as soon as possible, leverage is key.

The 3 Ways To Leverage:

  1. Duplicating

This can be applied in the context of creating products or future plans for your company. Many startup companies, waste their time and productivity by cracking their heads to invent new products. The key here is to duplicate what already works or exists and improve on it. This will inevitably help you manage your resources better.

  1. Technology

We live in an era where almost anything can be automated, with the help of technology. For instance, you can automate your email, quote deliveries, presentations and even meeting notes. You just need to look up for the available platforms for you to do so.

Let’s take your emails for example. You can easily set up your email client to create email templates (such as ‘Canned Response’ if you are using Gmail). If you need to send out emails at a specific time to a specific audience, you can schedule and set your email beforehand by using autoresponders; such as Aweber.

Automating can help you save a lot of time, especially if you are running your own business, as it can be very time consuming. Therefore, when you have automated all redundant tasks, you can focus on marketing and scaling your business to greater heights.

  1. Outsourcing

Most business owners think they can handle everything on their own, but this can easily leave you overworked and overloaded. People also normally assume that as soon as you have established your own business or company, you need to hire full time employees and run an office. This will definitely incur great cost.

How do you leverage off a team excluding all the hassle of running a physical establishment and hefty costs? The answer is outsourcing. You have the capability to hire freelancers across the globe to create your products for you while you focus on marketing your business! This will help to increase your business’s productivity.

Where do you search for freelancers?

There are various existing freelance websites to find the talents you need.

However, these are my top two picks:


Fiverr lets you buy or sell any service starting at a very reasonable rate of $5.

In Fiverr, a service is known as a ‘Gig’. Fiverr is the world’s largest marketplace for digital services. There is no need for you to negotiate pricing and the services offered are in multiple of $5.


Formerly known as ODesk, Upwork is a platform that connects clients with virtual freelancers. You can hire freelancers on an hourly basis or one off projects, depending on what needs to be done. What’s different about Upwork is it’s time tracking tool which makes it easy for you to track the project’s progress and pay for the work they complete.

Let’s take Uber for example. One of the most dominant growth factor for their company is their employment model, where they utilize freelancers to operate their business. This helps them to adapt to changes in demand effectively.

According to, “freelancers are an essential asset in meeting the daily rigors of managing a startup. This is especially true for bootstrappers who don’t necessarily have the resources to train or provide hardware for fresh hires” .

Therefore, what you need to do now is to list down which tasks you can manage on your own, and which you can delegate or outsource so you can immediately get down to business.

Chapter 08: Follow One’s Cause Until Successful (FOCUS)

“There is time enough for everything in the course of the day, if you do but one thing at once, but there is not time enough in the year, if you will do two things at a time.” Lord Chesterfield

In the fast paced world we live in today, we are constantly on the go and multi-tasking has become second nature. Catching up with your work emails whilst driving, having lunch and preparing for that meeting.

Yes, we are able to do two or three tasks at once. But what’s impossible is giving your full concentration to the multiple tasks at once.

Psychologists suggest that having fewer priorities and focusing on one task at a time leads to enhanced productivity. The brain struggles to transition from one task to another, simultaneously. This brain phenomenon is known as ‘switching cost’.

Therefore the only solution for you is to focus. You need to make it a point to follow your cause until completed. Here are 5 tips for you to stay focused and concentrated on the task at hand:

1. Stop Multitasking, As Multitasking Is A Myth.

This is the first thing you need to sort out if you want to finish what you started.

Instead of rapidly switching between activities, commit to a single task at hand, focus on it until the end.

As stated earlier, it is possible for you to execute multiple tasks at hand, but that does not necessarily mean you are giving equal attention or concentration to each. Therefore, you may realize that the task completed would not be at par with what you expected it to be where you could actually perform better.

Doing more things at a time does not garner faster or better results. However, giving your undivided attention to one thing as best as you can, produces greater results. Many people mistaken productivity as getting a boatload of things done at a time. False. Why? Productivity is the measure of getting things done consistently.

2. Schedule Your Day, Plan Ahead

“People who plan to fail, fail to plan”. As cliché as this may sound, it is indeed true. Sometimes, you have 1001 things to be completed within a day (which includes work, house chores, exercising and the list goes on). The only way for you to maintain your productivity level and combating stress is by planning ahead.

Here are the two easy methods you can adopt in order to schedule your day and plan ahead:

i. Having A Planner To Amplify Your Productivity

Let’s face it, we can be caught up with things that need to be done and sometimes, we forget what needs to be prioritized. Therefore, having a daily planner will work wonders for you.

Even though there are virtual planners made available for you out there, from Google calendar to your iPhone’s planner, but let me suggest to you the best planner to use. The most practical and effective planner to keep you on track would be the traditional paper planner.


As paper planners gives you a visual and in your hand space for scribbling down notes whenever, wherever. Just imagine if you depend on your iPhone’s planner and suddenly the battery dies out? Not that practical anymore.

Make sure you use the monthly view for important dates; such as birthdays, public holidays or special occasions. Use the weekly planning sections for more general tasks, such as visiting your grandparents by the end of the week, or mowing the lawn.

Meanwhile, for daily planning sections, you jot down specifically what you want to accomplish or what needs to be done for each day. This can be preparing for a meeting, going out with a friend or going to the gym.

This will inevitably help you to focus on what needs to be done and you are able to prioritize your workload. You can also prepare yourself for the tasks planned ahead. Your planner will also help in breaking down big or difficult tasks to smaller, manageable steps.

ii. The Ivy Lee Method

If some of you are unfamiliar with this method, this method was established by a highly respected productivity consultant, known as Ivy Lee. This method was widely used since 1918 and proven effective to companies.

The Ivy Lee method comprises of 5 simple steps:

  1. At the end of each working day, list down the six tasks you want to accomplish tomorrow. Do not exceed six tasks.
  • Prioritize these six tasks according to their importance.
  • When you start work the next day, place your focus solely on the first task on your list. Complete the first task before you move on to the next one.
  • Approach the rest of the task in the same fashion. Remember to only move on to the next task only when the previous task is completed.
  • Repeat this process every working day

This will no doubt help you stay focused on the task at hand, and will also boost your productivity.

  • Use The Pomodoro Technique (focus at the task for 25 minutes and take a 5minute break, repeat)

The Pomodoro Technique was invented back in the early 90s, by entrepreneur and author Francesco Cirillo. The method is fairly simple; when you need to complete large or multiple tasks, you break down the task into short time intervals. The most effective duration would be focusing on your task for a solid 25 minutes, and taking a short break of 5 minutes. The cycle repeats.

Using the Pomodoro Technique can help you charge through distractions, and it will help you focus to get things done in short intervals of time. It’s an effective way to train your brain to pay full attention to the work you need to complete. This technique also enables you to take necessary breaks so you don’t get burnt out or overwhelmed with the task at hand.

The Pomodoro technique ensures you are consistently productive and your motivation is kept in check by taking short breaks. All you need to do is to time yourself!

4. Eat Healthy To Retain Your Focus

One of the most important elements we take for granted is our eating habits. This contributes significantly to how our brain functions, which affects our attention span or focus.

In order to maximize your productivity and retain your focus, these are the dietary requirements or eating habits you may want to consider practicing; You need to keep the glucose level in your bloodstream steady. This helps your brain to focus for the long-term. This also fuels your brain and reserves the necessary energy needed for its mental functioning.

Therefore, researchers suggest a low-glycemic diet. What does a low-glycemic diet consist of?

i. Non-starchy vegetables

Leafy greens such as spinach, salads, broccoli and green beans.

ii. Nuts and seeds

Chia seeds, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, almonds and walnuts.

iii. Beans and legumes

Soya beans or red beans. You should have this in small portions about half a cup per serving.

iv. Yoghurt and other fermented diary

Greek or unsweetened yogurt, raw whole milk, traditionally made cheese.

v. Whole grains

Oats, brown rice, wild rice, granola and muesli.

vi. Fresh fruits

Stone fruits, blueberries, cherries and citrus fruits.

vii. Healthy fats

Virgin coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil, nuts, seeds and avocado.

viii. Lean proteins

Salmon, turkey, skinless chicken breast, lamb and beef.

5. Meditate

Meditation does not only serve a spiritual purpose, but research has also proven that meditation can boost your attention span as well as keeping you focused on the task at hand.

You don’t have to go meditate at a monastery or on top of a mountain. All you need to do is invest at least 5 to 20 minutes of your time per day. Close your eyes and inhale deeply, preferably at a quite place so you are free from distractions. Think of nothing. You will see how your focus and attention span improves just after 4 days. Try and practice meditation first thing in the morning before you start your tasks.

So What’s Next?

We have finally come to the end of the book. Now is your time, your call. Even if you have digested every single technique from this book, you are only able to boost or improve your productivity by taking immediate action.

Losing focus and procrastinating is easy, but to get back on track, retaining that momentum is the true test of endurance. Living in this digital era no doubt has its privileges, and it has given us a vast amount of amazing things to look forward to; our mobile phones, tablets, computers. But these things also come with a cost.

Without us realizing, all of these gadgets are also our main distractions and makes us counterproductive. According to a research conducted by the Human-Computer Institute at Carnegie Melon University, it can take up to 25 minutes just to regain back your focus after being distracted.

Consequently, from all the power tips we’ve provided you with, it is now your job to create a productive environment for yourself. Create an environment that can motivate you to stay focused, distraction free and most importantly, boosts your productivity.

What you need to do now is remove interruptions, distractions, chaos and all the clutter in your life that would not contribute to your productivity as well as completing your pending tasks.

Here’s to supercharging your productivity!