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When is YOUR “Power Hour”?

Here’s something interesting that most people don’t know:

Each of us has a specific two-hour window every day when – thanks to certain physiological processes – we’re naturally TWICE as productive as normal. Not only that, but our cognition is sharper, too.

Remember the last time you were in the zone? Chances are, it was during this two-hour window.

I know my peak time starts around 11am, I need some time to get settled into the day and then I’m ready to get down to work.

Knowing when you’re at your peak performance can help you in so many ways. You know precisely when to do your most important work. Better yet, you could set an alarm and wait for it to ring before diving into tasks that are essential for getting ahead.

Why? Because then, without even trying and tapping into your personal productivity style, you’d perform at a higher level and, ultimately, do a better job. You’d finish faster, leave work earlier, and arrive home with more energy at the end of the day.

This two-hour window occurs at a different hour for each of us.

It’s hardwired into our neurology. Read more

What’s the Best Planner To Make You More Productive?

image1 (1)Last Thursday I went back to Long Island, to the town I grew up in to attend a Listful Thinking event. It was at the library I went to as a child, where I first developed my love of reading. I remember joining a summer reading group there when I was a kid and getting a sticker for each book I completed. What a thrill!  So being there to speak about my book felt very much like an Oprah full circle moment.

My very first friend and neighbor Jackie is a librarian there and set up this event for me. While I was there I spoke to a women who was having issues with buying too many planners and not using them. (Sound familiar?)

image5Her friends all raved about how helpful the planners had been for them, but she just couldn’t get into them. So she assumed the problem was with her.

I asked her if she was having any organizational troubles, besides not using the planners, which she didn’t.

I imagine this may sound like something many of you can relate to, so I thought I would share with you what I told her – If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it! Don’t try to force yourself into a system that doesn’t work for you. You have to find your own unique productivity style and be true to it.

image4It’s almost a psychological thing where we feel the act of buying a new planner/notepad/pen will make us more productive. But the truth is there isn’t any special planner or notepad that will change your life and make you more productive. There is a only the planner or notepad that suits you.

If that’s a simple steno pad or Post-It note then so be it. It’s more important to have a system that works for you. I write my work to-dos for the following day before I leave the office everyday. I do it on a simple steno pad. Where you write the to-dos matters less than the actual system you have for capturing them.

What planners have you tried that worked or didn’t work for you?

What’s Your Productivity Style?

productivity styleOne of the biggest hurdles people face when they’re trying to be more organized is figuring out what works for them. It’s why I recommend a variety of apps and tips on this blog. There is no one solution that suits everyone. Once you understand your productivity style you can cater your work schedule around your needs. Follow this list to discover your productivity style.

1. Are you a morning or night person? Most people know when they are most productive, but they often make the error of trying to correct it. Forcing yourself to wake up earlier if you can’t possibly write a sentence at 6am doesn’t help anyone. It may sound simple, but stop trying to change who you are. Instead plan to do your most difficult tasks when you’re at your most productive even if that’s in the middle of the night.


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