Training and Performance

In many jobs your working hours are performance hours. You’re expected to do the work that creates value. If you’re a programmer, you get paid to program. If you’re a lawyer, you get paid to help people solve legal problems. But in some jobs, performance is just a small slice of paid time on the…

Batch Blogging

Almost all of the articles I’ve posted this year – or ever, actually – were written on the same day they were published. It’s been my blogging style for the past 16 years to write and edit posts in a single writing session and then to publish them when they’re complete. This year is unusual…

Ass-Kicking Frames

Here’s a really simple idea that can be useful for self-motivation. Sometimes our frames are too flabby, giving us lots of leeway to drop the ball and slack off. In such cases it may be useful to adopt harsher frames, at least temporarily, to demand more from ourselves. Here are some of these ass-kicking frames…

Your #1 Priority May Lead You Astray

While it’s good to set goals and establish priorities, there’s a risk when you become myopically focused on a single outcome. Single mindedness can be okay for a while if you’re progressing nicely, but if you’ve gotten stuck and the needle isn’t moving, this stuckness can prevent you from making progress in any area of…

Fragile Habits

Some habits are more fragile than others. Once established, some habits are very delicate. If you miss a day or try to alter them, it’s easy to knock them out of place completely and see them fade out. Other habits are more resilient. You can push and prod them, change them in different ways, and…

Your Giant Pumpkin

One of my favorite business books is The Pumpkin Plan by Mike Michalowicz. It uses the analogy of growing giant pumpkins and applies it to building a business. The basic idea is to figure out who your best customers or clients are, so you can specifically tailor your business to serving them well. Then ideally…

Appreciation Density

In the past 11 weeks, I’ve lost an average of 1.15 pounds per week, mainly just by logging what I eat. This simple practice has helped me tweak and adjust my meal choices even though I’m still eating the same foods as I was previously. I’m eating less food in terms of calories, but my…

Your Weekly Priority Card

When you have a lot of quarterly goals, it can be tricky to keep them prioritized, especially since priorities can shift as you go through the quarter. So it’s good to have a reliable practice to refocus your attention on your top priorities. One simple practice I’ve been using lately is to create a priority…

Graduating From $20 Problems to $20K Problems

One simple tip for inviting more abundance into your life is to elevate the cost of the problems you normally focus on. Suppose you order groceries online and have them delivered. And suppose the company screws up several items in your order. Maybe you feel inclined to complain and get a refund on those items.…