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How to 80/20 Your Life

https://markmanson.net/80-20-your-life

markmanson.net

How to 80/20 Your Life
There's an interesting theme across many aspects of life that also applies to being productive. Find out what it is.

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The Pareto Principle

The Pareto Principle

... or the 80/20 principle was coined in the early 1900s by Vilfredo Pareto, an Italian economist. He observed that the pea pods in his garden were producing peas at this rate. 20 percent of the pea pods produced 80 percent of the peas. This output was then observed by him on a larger scale, across industries, societies and companies.

This principle states that 80 percent of the output or results comes from 20 percent of the input or effort.

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Universal Law

The Pareto principle has been seen working in various fields, and domains:

  • Sales and Marketing departments recognised that 20 percent of the customers brought 80 percent of the products, and 20 percent of their sales force made 80 per cent of the sales.
  • Businesses realized that 20 percent of the costs led to 80 per cent of the expenses. They saw that only about 20 percent of their effort created 80 percent of productivity.
  • Human Resource departments observed that 20 percent of the employees created most of the value (80 percent).

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Identify Your 80/20

We have never considered this before but the same principle applies to our lives.

  • The kind of food we eat, only 20 percent of it really matters.
  • The people we meet, 80 per cent of those are not worth meeting.
  • The stuff we buy (like clothes and gadgets), 80 percent of it we hardly use.
  • The things we do 80 percent of the time, are not providing many benefits or fulfilment.
  • The money we spend, most of it is not useful or healthy for us.

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Review Yourself

The 80/20 law, like gravity, is everywhere in your life.

Check your money flow, relationships, possessions, and the things you spend your time on, and find if there is any improvement that can be made in your life.

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Make Dream a Reality

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Keys to Living Without Limits

Clarity. Have a clear vision of your desires and future to help you stay focused on your goals.
Competence. Commit yourself to doing something that enables you to become better at doing the most important things in your field.
Concentration. Persevere, without diversion or distraction, in a straight line toward accomplishing your goals.

Identifying Productivity Constraints

What restraints you from achieving your goals? Are they learned feelings of helplessness? Or are they just simply excuses? Remember, whatever you have learned, you can unlearn. 

If your real goal is to dream big dreams and to live without limits, you can set this as your standard and compare everything that you do against it.

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Neglecting 80/20 = Mental Clutter

Not having clear goals makes it hard to focus well on your priorities at hand. Applying the 80/20 rule will lift that mental clutter and enable you to focus better on your priorities. By me...

Identifying What's Truly Important

20% of your activities will account 80% of the results, and vice versa. Start working on the most important tasks, it may be complex or difficult but it holds majority of the outcome. 

Small Improvement Matters

Don’t be discouraged even you are being left behind, as long as you are making a progress, you are already making a difference.

Why Winners (Almost) Take All

In Pareto Principle, the winner takes almost all. The-Winner-Take-All effect happens isn’t because winners are better, smarter, and stronger than everyone else. In fact, most of us started at about the same place. But that tiny little advantage can take a person a long way by compounding effect over time.

Strategies for Keeps

  • Pick one goal for your business to improve focus and decision-making.
  • Optimise the first item in a funnel that has cascading effect to the entire funnel
  • Work hard to understand the 20% of your customer.
  • Create high margin products that bring 80% of all profits.
  • When assessing risk, recognise not all risks are equal.