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life hack

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3 (little) Things on Productivity *2 minute read*

Have you ever felt like there isn’t enough time in the day? Maybe you work in a super fast paced environment and time zombie’s come and eat up your work time? Are you bringing your work home wayyy too much?

I’ve had all of those scenario’s plague my work day more times than not. Here are 3 things that I have done that have magically given me my work-day back.

1) Not every email needs a reply.

This was a massive concept for me and make no mistake…I am not saying to ignore emails. However, simple emails that close out the conversation do not need an additional “thank you” email…informative emails that you receive that have all the information in them can be left alone, etc. The next time you sit down and pour in to your inbox, ask yourself “do I need to reply to this?” and start to learn what emails can be filed away.

These emails are time zombie’s and can be laid to rest. Swipe, delete, and move on to something that needs a reply.

2) The last thing you do at work today, is make a list of the first thing(s) to do tomorrow.

Ever get home only to have your brain wired for what you have to do the next day?

Yeah, me too.

This tactic has helped me ‘turn off’ at the end of the day and has helped boost my productivity for the next day. Next time you go on a vacation or long weekend, write out a mega-to-do list and prioritize it so the most immediate things get done when you return to work…this may help you actually be able to rest your brain!

3) Schedule times to reply to emails

My second favorite productivity “hack”. On an average day I schedule two 60 minute blocks to return and send emails. In a perfect work it would be 30 minutes of replying and 30 minutes of sending new emails, but ya never know.

What scheduling email time has done for me is 1) minimize interruptions from the email pop up 2) allowed me to prioritize who and what needs a reply first and 3) better block out my day because I am not ‘held captive’ by Microsoft Outlook.

For context- I work largely in sales (training) and receive approximately 15 emails per day. I schedule two 1 hour blocks…typically one in the morning before 8am and the second is somewhere around 4pm. Depending on your job and email flow you may need to scale this a little bit and add a third or maybe a fourth time slot.

Productivity bonus 1: keep your email closed until its your designated check time.

Productivity bonus 2: turn off notification icons on your phone so you don’t get distracted by them.

Give these tactics a try- if you have any questions drop them below in the comments!

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3 Things I've done differently in 2017

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3 Things I've done differently in 2017

I'm a fan of goal setting and goal setting season (szn) is back!

I know January 1st is an arbitrary date to start setting goals, but damn, it gets me going every year. 

As I started writing down my goals for 2018, I started reflecting on WHY those goals were getting written down and a lot of them had to do with things I did differently in 2017. Future goals are great, but I think there is something to be said about past actions, both good and bad. 

Lets cut right to the chase. 3 Things I did different in 2017:

1) I used a paper planner.

For five years I had used icalendar in my iPhone for all my sessions and life events. This lead to me being on my phone A LOT and not being present in my actual day to day. A vicious digital cycle. One of my 2017 goals was to be more present in what I was doing with family and friends and using a paper planner was HUGE. It allowed me to zen out and plan my week, see my day to day availability, and schedule times to do things that were important to me (family time, workouts, lunch...).

I used Action Day Planner in 2017 and will be giving Passion Planner a go in 2018

2) I went all in on building my network

2014 Casey would have told you that he had a referral and professional network.

2017 Casey would tell you that 2014 Casey was wrong.

But hey, that's called growth right?

So many fitness (and other professional) resources tell you to 'build your network' but never really tell you how to do that. So I took this year to do it. 365 days should be enough time? What I found was this...you don't need a huge rolodex of names in every different type of field, rather just a few rock solid practitioners that you trust and should they not be able to help, they have their own networks to tap in to. 

Another aspect of building your network is the fact that it gives you an opportunity to get fresh perspective, create and foster relationships with other industry professionals, and my favorite, challenge you to keep your shit together. Things that can often get pushed to the back burner when you become complacent in your day to day actions.

Those professional resources are right. You need a network. You also need to be able to trust and USE that network. More on this topic to come in later weeks 

Edit: I'm currently posting about this on Instagram (@CoachCaseyLee)

3) Executed on Ideas

I found myself in past years saying "I wish I could do this..." or "I want to be able to do that". In 2017 whenever I started a sentence with those phrases I made a POINT to say 'Fuck that Casey, just do it". 

During an Eric Cressey presentation in 2015 I wrote down this quote...

"There is no shortage of talented people with great ideas in this world. What there is a shortage of is talented people with the ability to execute on those ideas". 

I wish I was on a podcast...so I started a podcast

I wish I had some more personal revenue streams...so I started presenting on rock solid content and created a distance-based coaching program. 

I want to have more time with my wife on the weekends...so I systematized my approach to training and organized my Monday- Friday better to free up weekends. 

I found that I was 'wanting' a lot of things and instead of waiting for the 'want' to become a 'have', I just did it. The interesting thing is that none of it cost money. It only took the time and energy to learn how to do it (program a website, organize systems, read, research). That's where people get held up. 

 


Make 2018 the year of kicked major ass. Reflecting on what you've done differently in 2017 is a great place to start as it will help you build momentum on what has worked or maybe help you identify what you thought WOULD work, but hasn't. 1/1 is an arbitrary start time, but whatever gets you to analyze and adjust will do just fine!

 

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