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The 7 Secrets of Highly Competent People

Arthur Worsley
by Arthur Worsley
M.A. Psychology, Oxford. McKinsey Alum. Founder & Editor at TAoL.

Thursday, 7:25 AM
December 19, 2019

Hey friend, let’s recap…

On Tuesday we established that productivity has three distinct phases:

  1. Competence – Getting organised and getting stuff done;
  2. Balance – Extending competence to every part of your life; and
  3. Meaning – Clarifying why you’re here, where you’re going and why it matters.

That’s important because the first step in solving productivity is to break it into logical pieces. And that’s important because whatever you’re struggling with right now is a productivity problem in a fancy disguise.

Now, the big issue with modern-day productivity is that no-one’s connecting the dots.

In other words, if you’re trying to be more productive but it’s not working out then it’s not your fault. The problem’s not WHAT you know, it’s HOW it’s connecting together.

If you’re curious about solving that problem (if you’d like a practical framework, system and processes that connects your days, with your weeks, with your years) you should go check out TAoL’s TRACKTION Productivity Masterclass.

The testimonials there speak for themselves.

For now, though, let’s keep breaking down productivity and double-click on our first phase of competence.

Here are 7 areas I think about when I’m helping people get more stuff done:

  1. Task – What am I trying to accomplish?
  2. Time – How long do I need?
  3. Energy – Have I got enough fuel?
  4. Environment – Am I in the right place?
  5. Tools – Have I got the right tools?
  6. Training – Have I got the right skills?
  7. Team – Have I got the right people?

Simple right?

But it’s also incredibly powerful.

Because here’s a secret about productivity…

Productivity is not about fighting hard battles.

Sure, you can make things happen – you can fight through life and grind through each day until you wear yourself down to a stump.

But that’s an exhausting and miserable and, frankly, bone-headed way to go about getting what you want.

Productivity is about fighting smart battles.

And fighting smart battles starts and ends with setting yourself up for success.

If something feels hard then here’s the truth: you’ve forgotten one of time, task, energy, environment, tools, training or team.

But line those things up, and you won’t just find things become easier, you’ll find things practically start doing themselves.

So next time you’re struggling, whip out this checklist and ask yourself, “Which of these elements is missing? Which one is holding me back?”

Then work out what to do and take action.

Then repeat.

Break the problem down; make this framework a habit and almost anything you try to accomplish will instantly become much much easier.

You’ll work ON your life, rather than IN it.

You’ll get more done AND unlock time, space and energy.

You’ll finally feel like life’s under control, you’ll discover the secret to doing far more of what matters and you’ll quickly become one of the most productive and competent people on the planet. 🚀

That’s all for today – time to pack before I fly to Australia for Christmas! 🎄

Look out for our next update when we’ll double click on balance as we start digging into my favourite two parts of productivity.

And until then, have a wonderful week, be your best self and go well 🙌

Arthur “Be The Chemist, Not The Reaction” Worsley

Arthur Worsley
I founded TAoL to discover and share the best wisdom on how to live long and prosper. Before that I studied Psychology, Philosophy & Physiology at Oxford and consulted at McKinsey. Still curious? Learn more or take my FREE productivity quiz.

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