Start quitting stuff that isn’t as important and see what happens

We always think we need more: more help, more motivation, more energy. But in our current world, the answer is often the exact opposite: we need less. Fewer distractions, fewer responsibilities. Is that so we can watch more TV? No. We need less of those things so we can go all-in on our priorities. The question is what are you going to do less of? What are you going to quit or say no to in order to make time for what matters most?

In the book The Effective Executive, Drucker explains “The executive who wants to be effective and who wants his organization to be effective polices all programs, all activities, all tasks. He always asks: “Is this still worth doing?” And if it isn’t, he gets rid of it so as to be able to concentrate on the few tasks that, if done with excellence, will really make a difference in the results of his own job and in the performance of his organization.”

If you practice something one hour a day, that’s 27.4 years to reach the 10,000 hours mark of expertise. But what if you did quite a few less important things and made it fours hours a day? Now it’s 6.8 years.

That’s the difference between starting something at 20 and being an expert when you’re 47 and starting at 20 and being world-class at 27. Famed researcher Walter Mischel credits his success to a Yiddish word his grandmother taught him: sitzfleisch. It means “buttocks.” As in “Put your butt in that chair and work on what’s important.”

So what’s the first step? Know your number one priority. Then start quitting stuff that isn’t as important and see what happens. You’ll learn really fast if something really is more essential than you thought.

Thanks for reading.



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