One of the things I personally enjoy the most is doing MORE effective work, that leads to more results, in LESS time.
Maybe this may sound impossible to you, or there’s no way that this is achievable by just anyone. I want to show you today how simple (not easy) it really is.
You see, there’s this famous quote: “I choose a lazy person to do a hard job. Because a lazy person will find an easy way to do it.” -Bill Gates
I half-agree with this statement because the lazy person still needs to get the job done. I think what Bill Gates really meant by lazy was actually smart.
We don’t want to work harder, we want to work smarter. Think about the first human to invent leverage and discovered they could lift huge rocks with much less force.
We want to move from working with an external force that takes all of our energy, drive, and will to work with our own power.
Now if you think about this, it makes a lot of sense. Human’s main goal is to preserve energy and keep homeostasis. We don’t want to burn energy on fruitless or extremely hard activities. This will cause us to burn out.
Either way, what I’m going to talk with you about today is slightly different.
I’m not going to search with you for an easy way, shortcuts, or quick methods for half-doing a job… Which isn’t favorable by all means.
Making each hour worth more
My aim is to show you how to initially make 1 hour of yours equal to 2 hours.
Then when you realize the power of these methods – to make 1 hour equal 4 hours.
Then 1 hour can equal a day’s worth of work. Then a week. Then a month perhaps.
Because time is compressible, and\or expanding, depending entirely on our MENTAL states, on the power of our mind to zone in and remove any and every obstacle standing in the way.
Have you ever seen Avatar The last Airbender show? If so, you know that when Ang the Avatar really needs to do something powerful and hard, he unlocks a different state through which he can operate and bring in x100 results than in his regular states.
This is where peak performance, mental preparation, and tapping into Flow come in handy. It’s not about DOING more work, it’s about getting more work out of your existing time.
This is something that needs to be trained and cultivated, in order for you to tap into this state at will. This doesn’t happen spontaneously, and even if you do by chance enter this peak state of focus, energy, power, and will, you may not understand why or how it happened. The beautiful thing about it is it CAN be activated at will – with the right training and focus.
Substantial vs Marginal Gains
Many people focus on things that will AT MOST grant them marginal gains. If they’re a writer, they’ll buy a new keyboard as they think it’ll make them better and more productive. (Been there lol, I love the sound of the mechanical keys as I write).
A runner will buy new shoes, a trainer at the gym will take supplements, a model will buy new lipstick -etc.
The things you need to understand are that these items, props, and extra gadgets will only bring you an edge. It will make you superior if you’re already a professional. It will take you from 90% to 92%…. but also from 50% to 52%.
Now, I’m not saying that if they are blocking factors. For example, a runner with old worn-out shoes that cause injuries will boost performance by x3 if that’s the case. A writer writing on a professional keyboard will run laps on one that struggles with a laptop where half the keys are buggy. An athlete with an uncomfortable bed will have a really hard time sleeping, and his training will deteriorate.
You get the gist of this, The items\props\gadgets are extra, but only when you already have a solid foundation.
To sum it up, if your equipment is good to do the job, changing it is not where the gains are. If it hinders your work, definitely start there and change the things that are blocking your success.
Now to understand how marginal gains really work let’s look at this example:
Think about a 100m runner.
An average person will take between 15-20 seconds to complete the lap.
A professional athlete can take anywhere from 11-15 seconds
Only the most elite, athletic, powerful, and strong Olympic runners manage to get into the 9.5-11 bracket.
Now, that’s the thing I want you to understand – the more you get deeper into your craft, the harder it gets to improve the gains. It becomes marginal. The difference between 20 to 12 is massive – yet almost anyone can achieve it if they truly set it as a goal.
But the difference between 11 to 9 is even larger, some would say, almost impossible.
A person who wants to become a millionaire is much more likely to achieve it than a person who wants to become a billionaire – it’s just statistics.
Now I don’t say that to discourage you, but to help you focus on the right goals for the right time. That’s why the focus at the start shouldn’t be on MARGINAL gains. You need to find the spots where the most gains can be made at the shortest amount of time. This will bring your performance to the peak, much faster, and much better, without wasting tons of time and energy on useless activities.
Now how does one start improving their performance, in any field, with a high likelihood of success, and extreme results + improvement?
Let’s identify the steps…
- Sleep – without proper sleep, you’re not going to be able to achieve the states I have described above. I wish there was a shortcut or a way to reduce this, but in general, most people would benefit from 7-8 hours of quality sleep. Yes, there are those who can sleep 4-6 hours and still smash it, but I believe they are rare, and few, that have a gene mutation. This allows them to sleep less and makes it seem as if that’s the norm. It’s been clinically tested and you need deep-quality sleep to improve your focus, performance, and energy levels.
Tips on how to sleep better:
- Set a desired sleep time and stick to it.
- Wake up at the same time every day and expose yourself to sunlight (even if it’s behind clouds)
- Gauge your caffeine intake. From my experience, it has different effects on different people.
- Sleep in a cool room
- Sleep on your back
- Read something before going to bed, and avoid screens before falling asleep
- Make sure you’re not eating before bed
- Exercise up to 3 hours before sleep. Your body will have a harder time falling asleep if too hyped up.
- Drink Chamomile tea, have a routine, meditate, and make the night peaceful.
These are general tips. There are probably many more out there but remember – marginal gains. Focus on the basics.
2. Meditation – if you want to unlock sage-like focus, energy levels, and electricity in your body, it’s time to take the meditation pill. If you’re reading my content both on social media, my blogs, or my courses, meditation is a crucial part of a healthy life. It is like working out and moving the body for the mind. Your mind has lots of noise and debris stacked up, more than you can imagine. Meditation helps clean it all out, clear your energy, and help you align yourself. Your focus will increase and the ability to come up with new insights, and ideas, and make connections will skyrocket. This really is the key to unlocking superpowers. It may be hard to make this a habit, but just 10m a day is all you need to get started.
3. Working out – If you want to improve your performance in any field, you need a healthy body. “But I work in front of the computer all day” – that’s exactly why you need to focus on your body. Your general health and well-being depend on the sum total of all your body. If you’re stagnant, static, and just out of shape, you’re not going to be at your peak ability to perform. This will affect your mind and make you slower, less sharp, and less driven. I’m saying this out of the experience. When I finished my military service, I decided I’ll never work out again cause I was completely burnt out from doing it for 3 years. It worked fine for a while cause I was still leading a very active life. But over time I started feeling more anxious, less motivated, and less energetic, and every other metric in my life started declining. The moment I got back in the gym, a new spark lit up, and I’ll hopefully never ever stop. So if this sounds similar to you, or you’re giving yourself excuses… trust me, it’s gonna change the way you operate on so many levels. The blood pump ENLIVENS your brain, the hormones keep rushing, the circulation of toxins out of the body, the better looks, more energy, and more benefits are unimaginable. 3-4 times a week, for now, is all you need.
So far we’ve covered the base layers, now let’s talk about doing the work itself:
4. Eliminate distractions – You have to eliminate everything. Put your phone in another room. Close all browsers. Quite notifications from any other source. You can’t afford to break the flow. It’s really detrimental to your focus and ability to produce quality work. Even just a small distraction can make you have to regroup for a minute, which is a waste of precious time, and more importantly, mental energy that is used to get into a deeper state.
5. Have a clear outcome – before you begin, outline exactly what it is you’re going to achieve. For me at the moment is writing this article. The moment you write it down on the paper, it’s already done. You only need to execute it now, without thinking about it.
6. Induce focus – For me, classical music helps to focus a lot. As I’m typing this I’m listening to Chopin, one of my favorite playlists to focus with. Now, the beauty here, is the more I condition myself to get into deep work with the playlist, just by tapping play will make me get into the zone. This works because of Stimulus and Conditional Stimulus. Focus and deep work is the natural stimulus I am trying to get into to produce an outcome, a reward – which is completing my work. Now, when I get into focus, I achieve work. But If I get into focus while listening to music, I am now conditioning my brain to get into focus as well. So it’s kind of a nice hack you can use by yourself. My personal stack is coffee, classical music, and Obsidian. When all three are open, I’m in the zone immediately. I don’t necessarily “need” it, but it gives me an edge. And if it gives you an edge, by all means, do it.
7. Stretch work – when the focus is on, go all in. Make yourself immersed in the task. In all honesty, been trying the “Pomodoro” technique of 25-5 and it doesn’t work for me. Can’t get anything substantial done. If it works for you, do it. But know, there are depths of focus and clarity available only after GOING IN deep. If I can, I’ll go at it without counting or looking at the time, there’s no use for me to stop if I’m in the Flow, why would I voluntarily interrupt it? Now, if you do need breaks, that’s understandable, so opt for 50 minutes and 10 minutes rest, or 100 minutes and 20 minutes rest,
8. Let your Subconscious Mind do the heavy lifting – this one’s a hack that not many people know about. But if you decide on a few tasks you want to accomplish the night before, your subconscious mind will start working on them in the background. This is going to lead you to wake up and work on autopilot. There are ways to improve the ability and awareness of your subconscious mind’s ability to work for you and leverage it. It involves building a close relationship with it, programming it on a daily basis, and making it a powerhouse that brings the things you want TO YOU instead of chasing. I talk about it much more in-depth inside The Subconscious Architect. There’s a sweet deal on it this weekend, so head over to claim it if you’ve been looking to join.
Some of the things I didn’t yet cover, but want to talk about in a later newsletter edition:
Inputs and outputs, Ideation, Reading, Spiritual practices, Clear goals, vision, and outcomes
Personally, I’ve been doing this optimization and systemization process for almost 9 years now, and I have amassed tons of experience on the subject.
I get almost all creative and professional work done for the week in one day and use the free time to develop new ideas, consume more knowledge, distill my insights, consult with clients, and develop my skills.
This creates a potent feedback loop, because as you already know from this issue, the real work is done WAYY before the session itself. The session is just execution, and that is the key to mastery.
There are tons to go into about peak performance, there are many angles to tackle it with. Some people focus only on the physical aspects, some on the different mental states that can be accessed, some on the environment, and some on the spiritual and metaphysics levels.
I believe that good practice involves all of the above to some extent.
It is highly dependent on the goals and vision you’re aiming to bring to life, and it is highly customizable to your personal situation and preferences. It’s like creating a customized handmade suit that fits you perfectly – there’s no “one size fits all”.
What works for one person, may not work for the other – and what is good for one, maybe bad for the other.
Unfortunately, there isn’t a one for all blueprint that one can use to create the perfect routine and performance. We are similar, but not identical so you have to experiment yourself and see what works and what doesn’t.
Luckily, there’s a better way to make this process much faster..
If you want a shortcut to unlocking your own peak performance states and want to get guidance and support about the ideal system for your personal situation and goals, then check this out…
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That’s all for today. Hope you’ve enjoyed this Sunday’s edition
Aaron | Limitless Reader
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Schedule a 30 minutes discovery call to x3 your performance for more high-quality outputs in your business or professional work, to gain much more focus, energy, drive, and productivity while saving at least 10 hours a week from busy, stressful, and scattered work.