Welcome to BrainTree Podcast!

[00:51] Prue and Rocky introduce their productivity tools and their Be A Better Leaner resource.

[01:40] Rocky introduces a couple of quotes for this episode which come from Nelson Mandela.

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

“The majority of what you want will come from a minority of what you do.”

[03:05] Rocky moves in to today’s topic which is all about productivity. He tells us a personal story about how he used to scrape through work and look forward to the weekend or a holiday, until he decided to change that mindset. He also references a poll he did amongst his teacher colleagues where many of them responded that they wished they had more time and their primary hurdle in life was a lack of time.

[07:05] Rocky explains the myth that successful people are multi-taskers, in fact, Rocky explains that prioritising the most important thing will help you to be more efficient and more productive. Prue explains that we should rank our tasks in terms of importance and start at the top, not moving on until the top item on the list is complete.

[10:15] A client of Rocky’s told him that he needed to have more willpower, but Rocky tells us that willpower is like a muscle, and it’s essential to work in some rest to not burn out. Rocky goes on to say that he aims to gt all of his most strenuous tasks done in the morning, because he’d be less capable of completing anything too taxing in the late afternoon.

[12:09] Prue asks if it’s hard to know what is the most important thing. Rocky tells us that it is simply to ask questions. If you ask ineffective questions such as “Why am I so busy?” then it will be hard to find an actionable answer as the question is too abstract. Rocky explains a more effective question you can ask yourself: “What’s the one thing I can do today, for ______, such that, by doing it everything else will be easier or even unnecessary?

[14:38] Rocky asks the question of Prue regarding her Ph.D. Prue answers that she struggles as she can think of three things immediately. Rocky suggests that you must be as decisive as possible in choosing the one thing.

[17:53] Prue asks Rocky about his work routine and Rocky tells us about turning willpower in to habit. Rocky and Prue both agree that it is important to plan what you should work on, so you don’t get distracted by answering emails or any other less important items.

[22:10] Rocky quotes that research has shown that habit forming could take up to 66 days, contrary to what Rocky has previously quoted, so it may take a while for this planning and prioritising method to take hold, but you must stick with it. Rocky also suggests sharing it with friends and colleagues so that you can create a support group that makes it easier to keep the habit.

[22:55] Rocky starts to wrap up by sharing the routines he intends to implement this year. He tells us about The Happiness Advantage: The Seven Principles of Positive Psychology That Fuel Success and Performance at Work by Shawn Achor, which tells us to end the day reflecting on the positive actions of the day and write down three good things that happen every day, why did they happen and how did it feel? Review your good things list at the end of the week.

[30:10] Take two minutes to send a positive email. Even something as simple as a thank you note can have great benefits for personal well-being. Rocky tells us about a study where customers of coffee shops were given buy-10-get-one-free cards, and there was a much greater completion rate when customers were given the card initially, with progress already stamped.

[32:40] Rocky’s final tip is called activation energy, if we can make a 3-20 second difference to making positive habits easier and negative habits harder, the chances to create those habits in the future is increased. Rocky suggests if he wants to watch less TV then he will remove the batteries from his remote. If he wants to exercise in the morning then he will place his running shoes beside his bed the night before.

If you have any stories about how you made yourself more productive then get in touch! Let us know what you think about this episode and please leave us a review in iTunes!