motivation · Personal Success

The Big 5

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A simple tool I learned from Tim Ferriss which has kept my day in alignment to my (true) goals:

Write the 5 most important tasks on an index card each morning.  At the end of the day, discard the card and the next morning, begin again.

In this day and age of highly distractible events, it helps me stay focused on the most important tasks I want to accomplish.





Personal Success

Podcasts & Productivity

Photo by Jonathan Velasquez

A year ago,  I read the book “The $100 Startup.”

I hardly remembered what I read, but I recently listened to a podcast (Optimal Living Daily) where the podcaster reviewed this book. The big takeaway (among many) is that people spend an awful lot of time trying to blaze their own trails to success when they can simply follow someone who has already achieved what they want.

The reasoning, Justin (podcast host) believes, is because it feels good to try to create our own means and methods. But if you really want to achieve your goal(s), the most efficient way is to simply follow what someone already did.

This makes sense! Why reinvent the wheel?

We feel good and effective as we blaze our own trail, because we feel so busy.

But do not confuse “busy” with “productive.”

Check the podcast out, he covers many great writers and entrepreneurs. Justin’s voice is very even and mellow. It was easy to listen to as I walked my dog.



Personal Success


photo by Domenico Lola

I unsubscribed an email I received the other day. And then another. I don’t even remember signing up for these emails. Sometimes, they are a hindrance. Solution:

This is a free service. All you have to do is go to their website and submit your email address. You do have to allow them access to your contacts and email (of course) and they will process for a few seconds.



You pick and choose through your current subscriptions:


If you’re getting too many unwanted emails, check them out!

Periodically, they’ll tell you they found more subscriptions and you’ll get an opportunity to refresh and review. It’s a great way to quickly whittle your inbox down!

Personal Success



Photo by Brooke Lark

I’ve had my share of jobs in my career and consequently, many bosses. I’ve had a couple excellent managers and too many bad ones.

What’s a bad boss? Well, I had one who actually spied on my group while we we met to see if we were working. She treated us like children. She rarely praised anyone yet openly criticized us. As a result, most of us acted like children. When she was off-site, some of her employees came to work late, left early and goofed off during extra long breaks. She didn’t treat us like professionals, so (most of us) did not act like professionals.

One of the best bosses/supervisors I’ve ever had just retired. He treated us like professionals. He believed we were experts in our areas. He gave us respect and in turn, we respected him. He was unshakeable. If a “crisis” occurred, he handled it, with class and if possible, with humor.

Leaders ought to carry themselves the way they want their “followers” to behave. They exude confidence in themselves and their employees/civilians. They are astute observers and possess strong people skills. They do not speak ill of anyone (even opponents or competitors). Instead, they emphasize the positive and instill optimism within their team.



Personal Success

Efficiency Tip

Photo by William Iven

Remove Facebook from your phone.

You’ve probably heard that if you’re trying to lose weight or get healthy, you should not keep junk food in the house.  Will power is depletable. That is, it will work for a certain amount of time before you will inevitably give in.

In the same vein, if you want to be productive, don’t keep time wasters so easily accessible.

Consider replacing that app with a productivity or inspiring podcast you can listen to during down times. Or install a reading app such as Kindle or Audible.

Set yourself up for success.



Health · motivation · Personal Success

2 Small Actions = Major Transformation

photo by Andrew Neel

I made a couple changes this year and they’ve led to greater productivity (published my first book, lost a couple pounds and enjoyed more quality time with family). I thought I’d share them with you:

  1. Create an Intentions List, not a “To Do” List. Reflecting on your intentions (as opposed to “tasks”) ensures your actions are aligned to your deepest values.  When you sit down to enumerate all the things you want to get done, think about your intentions. Is it your intention to help others? Bring joy to loved ones? Be creative at work? This line of questioning will lead to precise calibration of your actions to your ultimate goals.
  2. Make your first intention task easy and simple. Crossing a task off your list will light up the rewards center of your brain. It gives you a natural boost! Start the day off with an (easy) sense of accomplishment.  Set yourself up for success!