I’ve just spent the last two hours on the couch reading a book in the sunshine with two cups of tea for company. This is my study time. How wonderful is that?
I’m over 200 pages in to Tim Ferriss’ excellent and yet simple Four-Hour Work Week. I wouldn’t say it’s unputdownable, but there are some real nuggets in there about effectiveness and efficiency, and Tim is, well, an absolute beast and a bit of a legend. There are tasks in there for the reader to do, some of which I do and some I don’t, but I am making notes and will revisit as I go. The main take-outs:
The Strategy - Pareto's Law & Parkinson's Law
Review tasks with two focus points: Pareto’s 80/20 to prioritise work knowing that 80% of the outputs come from 20% of the inputs, and Parkison’s Law to crunch the task down to complete right before I post. As an example, I have 48 mins left for this blog. I need to keep my focus and not be distracted by my Argentinean housemates’ girly screams whilst chatting to her friends. Shit. Concentrate, man!
Here are some classics, some of which I perform already such as turning off work notification sounds or email ‘message’ pop-ups, but the ones I like include:
Outsourcing - Your Own Virtual Assistant!
Outsource opportunities using Virtual Assistants e.g. what are the key messages within a book would be an interesting one! Tim references researching a specific price for flights or product abroad or whatever. I like it but unsure what I can use it for at present. I will need to spend more time cogitating on it when I go for my daily strolls. Will keep you posted as I progress through Tim’s book.
Back to the Plan
Two weeks ago I made a plan around identifying the things I enjoyed and prioritising them. After a week spending more time reading than I have in months, taking photos without being on holiday (the two are associated hand in hand for me), I’m thoroughly enjoying myself and feel more relaxed. My plan is shown below and I’ve printed it out on a table so that I could physically mark something off which is quite satisfying and I can see the progress. It’s not fancy, but nor does it have to be.
The keen eyed will notice something that I’ve realised too . . . what happened to my goal? I’ve actually got no closer to combining my photos, travels and mental health passions. So, although I’m enjoying myself and feel like I’m progressing, and I’m certainly learning, are my tactical tasks helping to achieve my strategic goal? Nope! Time to tweak the plan!
P.S. In the interest of transparency, I spent thirty-five minutes on a draft of the above, and another ten minutes reviewing. Twice. Then another twenty minutes posting and editing. Not exactly Parkinson’s Law in full effect - don’t hate me, Tim!
Writing and writing...