Why Do You Want to Be 100-Times More Productive?

04.12.2017 |

Episode #1 of the course How to be more productive by Dan Silvestre


Welcome to the course!

I’m Dan, founder of the highly popular One Productivity Newsletter and blogger at DanSilvestre.com. I study and write about productivity and personal development.

Over the next ten days, you will learn how to become more productive by implementing a few simple productivity hacks. You will understand how to focus on the right things, prioritize, and better manage your time.

Today, we will start by doing a simple yet very important exercise. We will start with the why.

I’m going to ask you a question, and I want you to think deeply about it for the next few minutes. Then, I want you to write down every answer that comes into your mind. Here we go:

“Why do you want to be more productive?”

Just think about it and write down your answers. When you think you’re done, keep reading. I’ve asked this question to many people over the years. Normally, the first answer fits into two categories:

Time: I want to get more things done and do more with my time.

Wealth: I want to be better at my job so I get promoted faster and make more money.

Does your answer fit into one of those two categories? Be truthful to yourself, there’s no judging here (nobody’s watching, anyway).

However, these are not the real reasons why people want to be more productive.That’s why you need to keep asking why and keep going into deeper levels, explaining the reasons why you want to be more productive. This iterative interrogative technique is commonly known as the Five Whys and was developed by Taiichi Ohno of Toyota. The main goal is to find the root cause of a problem or question. I’m going to do the exercise on myself:

1. Why do you want to be more productive?

Because I want to get more stuff done in my work in less time.

2. Why?

Because I want to work fewer hours per day and have more flexibility in my time.

3. Why?

Because I don’t want to work all the time. Instead, I want to spend time with the people I like and do activities I love.

4. Why?

Because it brings balance to my life and makes me happier.

5. Why?

Because I think that there is more to life than work.

While my first reason was time-bound (“in less time”), my deepest why shows that the real reason is wanting more time for pleasure (I’m basically a kid who wants to do homework faster so I can go play outside).

Here are a few other examples of deep whys I’ve heard over the years:

• Spend more time with my family and children.

• Backpack around the world for a year to discover new cultures.

• Start a side business/project on something I am truly passionate about.

• Be able to work for myself.

Now repeat the exercise and ask yourself “why” at least five times. Keep going until you get it. Don’t skip it. This is what’s going to fuel your flame to be more productive.

Figure out your why. The rest is easy. You will apply specific frameworks to your thinking and day-to-day life that will transform the way you work.

Tomorrow, we will start by taking a look at your routine and understanding where your time is leaking.

To a Productive Day!



Recommended book

Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action by Simon Sinek


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