Why am I writing this guide?
For quite a while I was defining the Alpha Efficient culture, and what it actually means and represents. Over the time, there were some epic posts that are rearranging the approach to productivity from inside out. Where everything starts within you, and than unlike GTD, and other productivity methods try to impose a system, than force you to use it.
From personal experience in coaching how to be more productive, I’ve discovered that people react way better if they are assimilating the new habits, bit by bit, rather than trying to make massive change all from once. That is why I’ve written 7 Steps To Alpha Efficiency, in order to break down this huge topic, and pick only the most relevant information regarding personal productivity beginners and intermediate alike. This article is also a guideline for anyone new to productivity world, and Alpha Efficiency.
The answer to why is because I am a firm believer that people interested in productivity need a good starting point, that will guide them in the right direction, without the need to wander around and scavenge for separated information. This is reflected in the very first fundamental of Alpha Efficiency value: The Holistic Approach.
What are truly the Alpha Efficiency Fundamentals?
Holistic approach to productivity
We can’t separate productivity from the rest of our life. Every action is interconnected with everything else that happens in our lives. When you decide you want to be more productive, you have to look at everything in your life, and how it aligns with your goals, desires, and ambitions. What are you ready to give up on, in order to get what your end result is.
Our productive lives are being separated from our private lives, and that is wrong, considering the impact of private life and it’s effect on our working life, and even vice versa. Both need to function for optimal results.
CORE is still being in the process of evolving, but it’s simplified approach to systems. Actually CORE is more of a guideline to what your productivity ecosystem should look like at the end of your journey. I don’t believe in approaching your productivity from the outside, I believe that the main breakthroughs are coming from within.
CORE stands for:
Habits are the corner stone of productivity. Everything you stand for, is reflecting in your habits. There are numerous goals in life that can only be achieved through consistency, that leads to mastery. Spending time in your life focusing on mastery is what makes you stand out from the crowd. That requires habitual behavior.
Sleep and nutrition
The most important ingredient of productivity is good night sleep. We are largely neglecting this in corporate environments.
Inner Game and Definitions of Productivity
Alpha Efficient person is productive, because he is in constant conquest of his own potentials. Sane, aware part of the society, that earns his lifestyle by contributing value to the society as a whole.
This blog is primarily targeted towards male audience, and the problems we face in the productive knowledge work. There have been numerous hurdles behind my knowledge work in past three years, and I’ve encountered numerous issues, that made a negative impact on my lifestyle, and some of those issues are universal, as I’ve encountered those same issues in my friends, whom are also involved in tech community.
In order to dissect productivity, we have to analyze some if it’s main components:
Economic definition of productivity: Productivity is average measure of efficiency of production.
Let’s pay attention here to the following words:
Productivity = Efficiency x Product
In industrial setting, or production based setting, it was relatively easy to measure. You would calculate the investment, than you would see the end result. But as the world started migrating from physical to digital, there were movements towards knowledge products, and no distinct way of measuring.
And also we included the knowledge component into the equation. The first programmers of IBM were calculating the productivity by the level of code they’ve built, but quickly Apple showed up, and disrupted their “productivity” by creating more efficient programs with less lines of code. So this apparently became “Dark Ages” thinking about software.
But eventually, I want to even move out of the production and focus on:
What is the personal efficiency, and how it relates to your products? Product of personal efficiency is not a physical product, it’s not software. Product of personal productivity are YOUR goals. Your goals and achieving them can measure your own levels of productivity.
Measuring personal productivity is even tricker, it’s actually something that we can’t accurately measure as in industrial or even software environment.
But in it’s simplest form it would look something like this:
Personal productivity = Personal Efficiency x Goals
Further dissecting Personal Efficiency
Personal efficiency can be further down dissected into Time Invested into obtaining goals, and time invested into acquiring skills that will get you towards your goals. Leaning too much to either sides of the forming part of personal efficiency, will hurt your bottom line. If you invest too much into knowledge, you’re not moving towards your goals, and if you’re not investing time into acquiring new skills, you’re not gaining momentum towards your goals.
This should be a friendly reminder that your life needs to be a constant learning experience, where you are wiser by every breath you take, while unstoppably moving towards your goals.
Once you are moving towards your goals, and learn quicker ways how to obtain them, you are on a surefire way to become productive in relation to your goals.
Relating to goals and remarkable goals
There are countless people out there who are accomplishing endless goals for other people, but none for themselves. Companies are the shining example of this. Your workplace most likely has clearly written goals, and plans, so why don’t you?
Are you accomplishing your goals? Or are you yet another mediocre person that gives up on your dreams? Because there is no middle ground. Those who are Alpha’s aspire to be remarkable. Are you remarkable? Do you have what it takes to accomplish your goals?
Companies who aren’t remarkable die out.
But remarkable is a very loose term, and it can be based on societal level as a whole, to what remarkable is, to the rather personal. There are two levels of remarkableness. You can be remarkable to yourself, and you can be so remarkable that they can’t ignore you. When you’re that good, heads will be turning, without you acting out of the ordinary based on who you are.
In the end it all depends on your goals, and wether you accomplish them or not. Does it make you personally happy with the way you live. The only person you need to be remarkable to, is yourself in the end. Are you giving out the best of what you’ve got? Or are you scoundereling yet another day of life?
Don’t forget the balance
In the heart of the personal efficiency there is a balance between time invested into obtaining goals and time invested into learning new skills. But as personal efficiency can be dissected, the same way we know that Personal Productivity is a part of a greater whole, part of life. Sometimes it is the smart thing to move Beyond Our To Do lists, and figure out that there is also a living component to. Our productivity is measured by completing goals, but our happiness doesn’t equate to productivity. It’s only part of the bigger equation revolving around life.
We produce for “others” so that we could enjoy life for ourselves. And that is perfectly fine. We create value for others for the selfish purpose of obtaining the value for ourselves. No happiness is found in handouts, no happiness can be found in dependancy. You are a human being, and by your DNA alone, you have the capacity to be amazing, to create great things, to aspire to induce change into the lives of your closest ones, and global population alike. You have the potential to rule your own destiny and not depend on someone else to sustain your life. And you do that by providing value, and securing the fruits of your labor.
Remember that personal productivity is something we improve for us, to better our lives, not to be completely consumed by it.
If you’re not living you’re hurting your productivity
I’ve always lived beside a father who was consumed in his work, and I have these obsessive compulsive tendencies about anything I’ve been previously doing, but lately, I’ve been obsessing about living, rather than producing, and when I pulled my head “out of the sand”, I’ve realized that bursts of work in last minute, are counterproductive, and reduce the pleasure of living my life the way I want to.
Productivity is a Yang, to living’s Yin. They are both important. Focus for the most of us, is to work less, not more. Make more with less.