The power of Silence for Focusing on your business

Focus, Marketing, peak Performance, Productivity, single target market, Uncategorized

For a lot of people who follow Buddhism , today is an auspicious occasion since it Lord Buddha’s birthday. One of the things linked to Buddhism and the overall philosophy of religions that originated in the Indian Sub-Continent is the practice of “Dhyan” and Yoga. While there are a lot of people who follow and practice Yoga across the world “Dhyan” is something that is missing in our lives. “Dhyan” involves sitting in pin drop silence and just focusing all your energy to think.

We all (me included) are so busy running after deadlines all day that we don’t give our brains the bandwidth to actually do what it can do best – which is THINK. When you get into the “Dhyan” stage you are able to connect a lot of the dots which otherwise seem impossible to connect.

I have many times earlier, mentioned a practice by Dean Jackson called the focus finder. Its a very practical way to do a brain dump and then get on to the activity of Thinking.

Today I was a little frustrated that I was not being able to figure out a solution for identifying a Single Target Market. I keep giving you folks a lot of inputs on why you should go about identifying the Single Target Market and the incredible benefits it can have in your marketing.

But today I had a mind block and I was not able to think through on what would be my STM. After lazing around mindlessly and watching un-necessary web series for about an hour, I decided to just sit down with my notebook and pencil and started jotting down thoughts as they came to me about my “bullseye ” (the STM)

While doing this my brain also kept throwing up additional items that I could include. But I had to make my STM as sharply defined as possible. So I kept listing down, all the people whom I would not be able to help.

Automatically I ended up putting a lot of AND statements to ensure that there were as little possibilities as possible for some additional markets creeping in.

Once this was done I went two steps further, I even identified the the markets, one variable away and two variables away. This would help me, in case, the STM I have defined is not viable economically and I have to expand it a little bit.

While I spent close to 2 hours dilly – dalling, I was able to achieve all this in a matter of about 45 minutes, when there was pin drop silence and I was only focusing on this activity. These 45 minutes were more precious because of the immense productivity I got.

If feasible I would suggest everyone to regularly do these focus exercises, they can increase productivity levels dramatically and because you take out everything from your brain and put it on paper, there’s no chance of missing things.

Till next then.

Carpe Diem!!!

You just said Yes – You just said No revisited

Affirmative action, Delegation, Productivity, relationships

Everything in life has an opportunity cost.

For everything that you say Yes to , there’s something that you said No to , right there. Which could mean that you said Yes to a non essential task which won’t get you anywhere closer to your aspirations. This same time will not be available for you to do a task which could help you meet your aspirations.

I happen to be one of those people who aren’t able to say No easily. Which makes me among the biggest culprits of breaking this rule.

Then you should not be reading this post, because it is only theory, except the fact that I am taking affirmative action to get out of the habit. I have written about how I have eliminated all , but an extremely few apps, from my devices and stopped all kinds of alerts. So now I don’t say Yes to looking at all the alerts from different apps.

The other thing I am trying to measure is a “no” index everyday. This is where I specifically say No to things. I want to see how high can it be taken. Earlier I have tried other mechanisms of saying No, but each time I would do that I would feel guilty. So now I am trying to gamify this. On a weekly basis I am tracking the index like the stock market to see if my trend is climbing up or not.

Being a person who works very hard on relationships, I am now delegating the job of identifying and starting relationships with people to others in my team. I support them rather then get into the activity myself. There are glitches, it also takes more time and I have to do a lot of hand-holding, but I have a feeling its starting to show results for me, because now I don’t have to say Yes , to cultivating every relationship.

If you have found other practical ways to say No to more things, then please put it in the comments below, I would love to learn and practice more productivity methods.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!

Time and leverage

Leverage, Productivity, scaling

In one of my A-ha moments recently, I learnt a very useful lesson. I keep talking about using leverage (not debt – for those of you who are exposed to financial markets). There are various kinds of leverage – with say automatic machines weaving cloth versus people weaving cloth. Suddenly you have one machine producing more than a 100 weavers could do in a day.

Your wordprocessor and spreadsheets are all examples of leverage. One of the best examples is 80/20 and its fractal derivatives.

But each of these things have their own constraints. What once started by increasing leverage, then becomes standard operations and then you find the constraints in that.

So what was the A-ha moment. Time is limited and is the same for everyone. However leverage is infinite. The more you keep using leverage the more you can get more out of the time you have.

No wonder Aristotle had said – you give me a lever long enough and a fulcrum and I can move the earth.

All the highly productive people are very highly leveraged and if they constantly keep looking for finding leverage points then there’s an infinite amount of productivity they can achieve. Isn’t that amazing.

So a couple of weeks back I spoke about how I am trying to identify points where my brain gives me resistance and try to work my way through those to improve my outcomes.

Now in addition to that I am also looking at how I can find leverage points and see how far I can go.

Will keep you posted on my progress.

Meanwhile if you know of ways to improve leverage, please share in the comments section below.

Till next time.

Carpe Diem!!!

The One thing giving you a pushback

Energy, Fear, Human Brain, procrastination, Productivity

The human brain is designed for ensuring your survival at all times. Given that most of us – especially those who live in democracies are generally safe – the brain does actually does not need to do too much for survival. But because that’s the inherent design, things can’t be changed.

Which means that the brain will pushback on all kinds of new things that you think of doing, because it inherently means that it will need to work more. If it works more it will consume more energy, which in turn is a risk if there’s a sudden need for survival issues.

I have been trying to analyse everyday – sometimes successfully and sometimes without success – at which points did I face resistance or pushback, which caused me to procrastinate. There’s actually an interesting podcast which Dean Jackson and Dan Sullivan used to do called The Joy of Procrastination. They had an interesting take, that you should actually plan your day based on the procrastination points that you face everyday.

Once you realise that the pushback or resistance or procrastination or fear means that the brain is thinking that new work is involved, it could actually be good for you. So thinking in these terms, I am working now each day on trying to identify one point of resistance and then actually do that thing. Sometimes it has been writing an email to a prospect, sometimes its a difficult conversation with a colleague.

I am not sure if all the activities that I have done are actually becoming successful but there’s a great sense of relief after I do the thing, where I was facing push back.

While I am working on that aspect I am also trying to figure out, how I can make the Domino effect come into play, when I am doing these things which are giving me a pushback. I will keep you posted if I can build an “algorithm” which can help me make me geometrically more productive because of these activities.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!