How to Get Things Done

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Hey friends,

Over the last few months I’ve assigned loads of time to an important task (writing my book) and… not really done much. Or only 30-ish% of what I actually want to get done.

Finishing this book is the single biggest piece of value I can add to my business. If I don’t meet my deadlines, it feels like we’re headed on a downwards trajectory 📉. But somehow, random crap turns up in my calendar, I let myself get distracted, and I don’t get it done. 🤷

Hiring an accountability coach has helped keep me on track. This is what my coach says every single time we meet: when it comes to getting important (but non-urgent) tasks done, lower the bar.

Make it ridiculously easy to get started - tell yourself you’ll only do the task for 5 minutes, or that your only job is to just turn up to the gym. That way, finding activation energy (ie getting started) is way easier, and you stop dreading and avoiding your big tasks. Even ticking one small thing off my might-do list builds my confidence, and makes me feel like tackling the next thing.

Basically, easier goals > hard goals if we’re struggling with procrastination. Especially if we’ve worked 0 hours on our most important task for the last few weeks.

One of my friends was set on doing 2 hours of Japanese practice every day, but struggling to keep it up. I said ‘wouldn’t it be easier if it was just 20 minutes?’ And there was just pure relief on her face - we both knew that committing to 20m per day would work better than doing the full 2 hours only twice a month, and beating herself up the rest of the time.

But it’s easier to give advice than to take it myself. 😆

A question for you - what are you struggling to make time for? What if you just put 1/3 of the ‘ideal’ time in? What would happen then?

Have a great week!

Ali xx

PS We're looking for a dynamic and hands-on Course Manager to lead the Part-Time YouTuber Academy, our flagship YouTuber course, and help take things to the next level. If that sounds like your dream job then jump over to this page to learn more about the role and its perks and *hopefully* apply. 🙌

🎓 My New Skillshare Class: YouTube for Beginners

If you missed the sign-up for my Part-Time YouTuber Academy, I just released a 4-hour Skillshare course on how to start and grow a YouTube channel from scratch. 😄 Even if you signed up for PTYA, this course is a super-useful YouTube foundation course.

If you’re interested then this link gives you a whole free month of Skillshare, including a bunch of my other courses 🎈🎉

♥️ My Favourite Things

📚 Book Summary - Grit by Angela Duckworth. I read the book a while ago (and made a video about it). But now that I’m in the business of writing books, I admire the craft all the more - Grit is genuinely amazingly structured, with great ideas. If you haven’t got time to read the whole thing, Shortform have a great summary (affiliate link 😉)

📚 Book - Turning Pro by Steven Pressfield. Says the difference between a pro and an amateur is that pros concentrate on the real work (like buckling down to write the next book), while amateurs spend most of their time doing fake work like marketing or researching new gear. Fake work can be important and useful, but it should take up less than 10% of your time if you really want to go pro.

🎙️ Podcast - School of Greatness x David Sinclair. About the evidence around longevity, and how to reduce the effects of ageing. I want to take my health more seriously and do more stuff for my (hopefully healthy) future self. Eg starting a food diary to track which foods make me feel grim. Hit reply if you have any advice on this anti-ageing stuff, and I’ll keep you posted 😛

📱 App - Strong. My favourite workout tracker - I use it every time I go to the gym. It shows me how many sets and reps I did on each exercise last time. Trying to get back to my max bench press of 90kg… Follow me on Insta if you want to see my workouts lol.

🍳 Le Creuset Enamelled Cast Iron Skillet - Attempted to cook x3 steaks and some lamb chops in this (not all at the same time) with varying levels of success. Because the cast iron is thick, it stays really hot when the cold steak lands in the pan - good for getting that crispy browning 🤤

✍️ Quote of the Week

If you try to find time for your most valued activities by first dealing with all the other important demands on your time, in the hope that there’ll be some left over at the end, you’ll be disappointed.

From Four Thousand Weeks by Oliver Burkeman. Resurfaced using Readwise.


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