Clarifying your highest leverage activities - Deepstash

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High-leverage activities: how to identify your energy multipliers

Clarifying your highest leverage activities

  • Document your daily activities. For a few days, track how you spend your workdays.
  • Highlight the tasks you are best suited for. Or put differently, focus on the tasks only you can do.
  • Choose your levers. Select 2 - 3 high-leverage activities and ensure to commit to these levers. Delegate tasks you are not best suited for, and automate repetitive activities.

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Personal Productivity Curves

A lot of the internal things that affect our productivity are out of our control. Our energy, focus, and motivation follow their own path or “productivity curve” throughout the day. 

Energy curves

We’re naturally more energetic and motivated at specific times of the day. Researchers call this our Circadian Rhythm. Every person’s rhythm is slightly different, but the majority follow a similar pattern.

  • Waking up. Our energy levels start to naturally rise.
  • Around 10 am. We’ve hit our peak concentration levels that start to decline and dip between 1-3 pm.
  • Afternoon.  Our energy levels rise again until falling off again sometime between 9–11 pm.
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We work best in natural cycles of 90-120 minute sessions before needing a break. When we need a break, our bodies send us signals, such as becoming hungry, sleepy, fidgeting, or losing focus.

If you ignore these signs and think you can just work through them, your body uses your reserve stores of energy to keep up. It means releasing stress hormones to give an extra kick of energy.

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Habits define your energy levels

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Poor sleep means you will start to underperform.

Research says 7-8 hours are pretty much mandatory if you’re going to stay cognitively sharp in the long-run.

Napping benefits

Even if it may feel lazy, napping has a range of cognitive benefits.

This is particularly true if you’re doing a lot of learning since the short burst of sleep can help with memory.

Free time is not wasted time

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Time management thinking improves your other skills
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