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Last Updated on August 16, 2018

16 Productivity Secrets of Highly Successful People Revealed

16 Productivity Secrets of Highly Successful People Revealed

The same old motivational secrets don’t really motivate you after you’ve read them for the tenth time, do they?

How about a unique spin on things?

These 16 productivity secrets of successful people will make you reevaluate your approach to your home, work, and creative lives. Learn from these highly successful people, turn these little things they do into your daily habits and you’ll get closer to success.

1. Empty your mind.

It sounds counterproductive, doesn’t it?

Emptying your mind when you have so much to remember seems like you’re just begging to forget something. Instead, this gives you a clean slate so you’re not still thinking about last week’s tasks.

Clear your mind and then start thinking only about what you need to do immediately, and then today. Tasks that need to be accomplished later in the week can wait.

Here’s a guide to help you empty your mind and think sharper:

How to Declutter Your Mind to Sharpen Your Brain and Fall Asleep Faster

2. Keep certain days clear.

Some companies are scheduling “No Meeting Wednesdays,” which means, funnily enough, that no one can hold a meeting on a Wednesday. This gives workers a full day to work on their own tasks, without getting sidetracked by other duties or pointless meetings.

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This can work in your personal life too, for example if you need to restrict Facebook access or limit phone calls.

3. Prioritize your work.

Don’t think every task is created equal! Some tasks aren’t as important as others, or might take less time.

Try to sort your tasks every day and see what can be done quickly and efficiently. Get these out of the way so you have more free time and brain power to focus on what is more important.

Lifehack’s CEO has a unique way to prioritize works, take a look at it here:

How to Prioritize Right in 10 Minutes and Work 10X Faster

4. Chop up your time.

Many successful business leaders chop their time up into fifteen-minute intervals. This means they work on tasks for a quarter of an hour at a time, or schedule meetings for only fifteen minutes. It makes each hour seem four times as long, which leads to more productivity!

5. Have a thinking position.

Truman Capote claimed he couldn’t think unless he was laying down. Proust did this as well, while Stravinsky would stand on his head!

What works for others may not work for you. Try to find a spot and position that is perfect for you to brainstorm or come up with ideas.

6. Pick three to five things you must do that day.

To Do lists can get overwhelming very quickly. Instead of making a never-ending list of everything you can think of that needs to be done, make daily lists that include just three to five things.

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Make sure they’re things that need to be done that day, so you don’t keep putting them off.

7. Don’t try to do too much.

OK, so I just told you to work every day, and now I’m telling you to not do too much? It might sound like conflicting advice, but not doing too much means not biting off more than you can chew. Don’t say yes to every work project or social engagement and find yourself in way over your head.

8. Have a daily action plan.

Don’t limit yourself to a to-do list! Take ten minutes every morning to map out a daily action plan. It’s a place to not only write what needs to be done that day, but also to prioritize what will bring the biggest reward, what will take the longest, and what goals will be accomplished.

Leave room for a “brain dump,” where you can scribble down anything else that’s on your mind.

9. Do your most dreaded project first.

Getting your most dreaded task over with first means you’ll have the rest of the day free for anything and everything else. This also means that you won’t be constantly putting off the worst of your projects, making it even harder to start on it later.

10. Follow the “Two-Minute Rule.”

The “Two-Minute Rule” was made famous by David Allen. It’s simple – if a new task comes in and it can be done in two minutes or less, do it right then. Putting it off just adds to your to-do list and will make the task seem more monumental later.

11. Have a place devoted to work.

If you work in an office, it’s no problem to say that your cubicle desk is where you work every day.

But if you work from home, make sure you have a certain area specifically for work. You don’t want files spread out all over the dinner table, and you don’t want to feel like you’re not working just because you’re relaxing on the couch.

Agatha Christie never wrote at her desk, she wrote wherever she could sit down. Ernest Hemingway wrote standing up. Thomas Wolfe, at 6’6″ tall, used the top of his refrigerator as a desk. Richard Wright wrote on a park bench, rain or shine.

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Have a space where, when you go there, you know you’re going to work. Maybe it’s a cafe downstairs, the library, or a meeting room. Whenever and wherever works for you, do your works there.

12. Find your golden hour.

You don’t have to stick to a “typical” 9–5 schedule!

Novelist Anne Rice slept during the day and wrote at night to avoid distractions. Writer Jerzy Kosinski slept eight hours a day, but never all at once. He’d wake in the morning, work, sleep four hours in the afternoon, then work more that evening.

Your golden hour is the time when you’re at your peak. You’re alert, ready to be productive, and intent on crossing things off your to-do list.

Once you find your best time, protect it with all your might. Make sure you’re always free to do your best uninterrupted work at this time.

13. Pretend you’re on an airplane.

It might not be possible to lock everyone out of your office to get some peace and quiet, but you can eliminate some distractions.

By pretending you’re on an airplane, you can act like your internet access is limited, you’re not able to get something from your bookcase, and you can’t make countless phone calls.

Eliminating these distractions will help you focus on your most important tasks and get them done without interruption.

14. Never stop.

Writers Anthony Trollope and Henry James started writing their next books as soon as they finished their current work in progress.

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Stephen King writes every day of the year, and holds himself accountable for 2,000 words a day! Mark Twain wrote every day, and then read his day’s work aloud to his family to get their feedback.

There’s something to be said about working nonstop, and putting out continuous work instead of taking a break. It’s just a momentum that will push you go further./

15. Be in tune with your body.

Your mind and body will get tired of a task after ninety minutes to two hours focused on it. Keep this in mind as you assign projects to yourself throughout the day, and take breaks to ensure that you won’t get burned out.

16. Try different methods.

Vladimir Nabokov wrote the first drafts of his novels on index cards. This made it easy to rearrange sentences, paragraphs, and chapters by shuffling the cards around.

It does sound easier, and more fun, than copying and pasting in Word! Once Nabokov liked the arrangement, his wife typed them into a single manuscript.

Same for you, don’t give up and think that it’s impossible for you to be productive when one method fails. Try different methods until you find what works perfectly for you.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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Last Updated on August 16, 2018

7 Surefire Ways to Become a Successful Writer

7 Surefire Ways to Become a Successful Writer

Whether you’re a blogger, a book author, an editor or an aspiring writer, you’d want your writings to be understood and recognized. It’s not really about the recognition but how much your writing can deliver your intended message and how it really can influence other people.

In this article you’ll discover 7 unquestionable ways on how to become a successful writer. These are the ones that get the best results, so don’t take them lightly.

1. Be willing to evolve

You’re not a model just because a friend took some photos of you on the beach that one time. And you’re not a writer just because you published an eBook, a few articles, or some blog fodder. The flat-out truth is that getting from A to Z in terms of professional writing includes a lot of hard work and personal transformation.

Every book you write is like a journey, whether fiction or not.

Every writing assignment, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant, is an opportunity to learn something new.

Every brainstorming session and every headache endured adds to your overall wordsmithing quality.

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2. Define successful in your own terms

How do you define a successful writer?

For some people, it means being able to write coherent sentences to get a point across, or perhaps sell a product. For others, it means being able to pay the rent and survive on writing skills alone.

You cannot be successful at anything you do not define. There are many different kinds of writers and many shades of success. Come to terms with what it means to you, and be as specific as a detective novel writer:

  • Money – If being successful involves getting paid for your writing, then define how much. Is successful making $30,000 a year or $100,000? Selling 300 copies or 3 million? The only limits are those you impose on yourself.
  • Recognition – We all crave recognition throughout our lives. If writing is something you want to become known for, then study the writing of those who have already earned their place in history.
  • Community – If you measure success by the amount of lives your writing touches, then define that as well. How many fans? How many likes on the fan page? How many “readers” will it take to reach your version of success?

3. Write until your imagination bleeds

Basically, in order to be a successful writer, you’re going to have to settle into the idea that a rather hefty word count is required.

How many words do you think most aspiring writers pump out before they reach success?

If writing itself is laborious to you, something you must force or strong-arm yourself through, you may want to choose something else. How often does a successful swimmer swim, or drummer drum?

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4. When you’re not writing, read successful writers

Writing is the yin and reading is the yang. Or perhaps it’s the other way around. You get the idea.

You can’t have one without the other. And in order to have balance, both must be equally present.

For every sentence that you write, you should be reading one. Continuously expose your mind to the writing that you consider to be worthy of success. Find “successful” writers to follow and model in your niche. Speaking of which…

5. Personalized replication

You’ve got to have a writing model. It’s as important as defining success.

Regardless of your niche or writing style, pick a master from within that category and attempt to recreate one single page of their best work.

If you’re into blogging, go find one of the best blogs of all-time and then re-purpose it. Go buy a big circulation print magazine and re-purpose the articles in your own way and words.

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Every success coach worth their salt will tell you that you can study and then replicate what the masters are doing. Just make sure that when you do, you personalize it so that it’s original content.

6. Have a second or third pair of eyes

Every successful writer out there has a proofreader or editor in their lives. It’s important because writers write. Proofreaders proof. Editors edit. That’s how it goes.

We may be great when it comes to proofreading other people’s writing, but not our own.

Writers can bring a piece only so far and then it should be handed off to another pair of eyes that can see it from an outside perspective.

7. Establish an online presence

These days, being a successful writer involves an online presence in one way or another. No matter what kind of writer you are, set up a website and publish content for the online realm to consume.

If making money as a writer is important, then be sure to set up a “freelance writer” profile. There are countless people online willing to pay you to do the research and typing for them.

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Furthermore, building communities of readers in the online world is incredibly wise.

Summing it up

So, let’s recap the 7 ways to be a successful writer:

  1. Realize that you must evolve into success. This provides powerful insight.
  2. Clearly define your version of success so you can claim it.
  3. Write more than unsuccessful writers do.
  4. Balance your writing life with your reading life for optimum results.
  5. Replicate the masters and personalize it.
  6. Make friends with a proofreader or editor.
  7. Set up a website or freelance contractor profile online.

Of course, you will experience some challenges on the road to success, but they are just a stepping stone to your writing success!

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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