20 Questions to Boost Your Productivity

Newsletter


Hey friends,

I was a bit stuck on what to write this week, so I decided to have a look back through some previous issues of Sunday Snippets to see if I could find any tips and tools I might have forgotten about. This one caught my eye – it’s a series of questions that can help you figure out if you’re really getting the most from your time. You can use it as a kind of productivity assessment, or as journaling prompts for when you want to reflect on your work 👇

Watching my YouTube videos, you might think ‘Ali has all this productivity stuff pretty figured out.’

But newsflash: I got a shockingly low score on my friend and coach Chris Sparks’ Performance Assessment. Which is designed to measure your personal productivity 😅

It’s a series of 20 questions. You give an answer between 1–5 for each question (1 = strongly disagree; 5 = strongly agree), then add the up to get a total score out of 100.

  • 100/100 = You’re an unstoppable force of nature
  • 60/100 = Decent, room for improvement
  • 20/100 = You have no clue what you’re doing.

I got a pretty sobering score of 45/100 this week – way lower than I expected. But thinking about the questions I scored lowest on helped me uncover some personal blind spots. I might even use Chris’ questions as newsletter writing prompts for the rest of the year.

Without further ado, here are the questions:

🗺️ Vision

Are you designing a life in alignment with your top values?

1. Do you have a life mission you want to achieve?

2. Do you have a vision for your career?

3. Do you have a consistent long-term review process?

You regularly reserve time to review wins, lessons, and opportunities in your life and career.

4. Do you have a consistent long-term planning process?

You regularly reserve time to define objectives, set actionable goals, and reallocate resources.

5. Do you keep track of your projects?

You track progress on the things that are most important to you. You have defined deadlines and clear objectives.

🚦Prioritisation

Are you working on the most important things?

6. Do you plan and review your top priorities for the week?

You plan your weekly priorities in advance. You review progress at the end of each week.

7. Do you plan and review your top priorities for the day?

You know what you will work on before you get started. Your schedule is an accurate reflection of your day.

8. Do you work on your Top Priority first each day?

You know what you plan to accomplish and how you will get started. You delay email, phone, and reactive work until after your Top Priority.

9. Do you have control over your own schedule?

You have the ability to select your top priorities opportunistically. You can invest your time in what you think is most important.

10. Are you decisive?

You act quickly and decisively. You minimize procrastination on difficult or ambiguous tasks. You know how to to get yourself back on track.

🏭 Systems

Are you making what you want to do easier to do?

11. Do you leverage your time well?

You maximize your average hourly rate. You take steps to advance your career rather than just maintaining your position.

12. Do you manage and delegate well?

You document processes and streamline repeating tasks. You delegate lower-value tasks.)

13. Does your physical workspace inspire you?

Your workspace supports deep focus and separation from home and personal tasks.

14. Do you track important metrics?

If it is important to your life or career, you are tracking it. Examples: health, time, habits, finances, business.

15. Do you have systems for learning?

Your personal development is intentional and systematic. You follow programs to train effectively. Your environment and information diet reflect your goals.

🧘‍♂️ Presence

Are you showing up as your best self every day?

16. Do you start your day intentionally?

You have a consistent morning routine that sets a positive tone for the day. Examples: journaling, reading, planning, exercise, meditation, gratitude.

17. Are you focused?

You can concentrate on a single task. You minimize notifications and digital distractions. You check email and messages only at pre-selected times.

18. Do you prioritize your physical health?

You sleep well. You eat healthy food that makes you feel good. You regularly exercise and spend time outside. You minimize caffeine and alcohol consumption.

19. Do you prioritize mental health and recovery?

You take offline breaks. You have a diverse identity with hobbies and supportive friends. You have self-care practices to replenish your well-being.

20. Do you finish your days effectively?

You tie up loose ends at the end of the workday. Your evenings set tomorrow up for success. You have clear separation between work and your personal life.

Once you’ve got your final score, think about how to improve your weakest areas. You might want to check out Chris’ free workbook Experiment Without Limits, which includes a bunch of useful tools and frameworks.

No sponsorship or affiliate relationship with Chris by the way – I’ve just found his advice super helpful over the years and he’s become a friend in that time. Speaks to the power of admiring someone’s work through the internet and then becoming IRL friends with them 🙂

Have a great week!

Ali xx

PS I interviewed Chris on my Deep Dive podcast, you can check out the episode here.

🏢Why we love WeWork

Since embarking on my digital nomad journey, I’ve had to make a lot of compromises to my productivity set up and I’ve learned just how big an impact your environment can have on your productivity. And even though my team and I love travelling around the world, finding a good place to actually work effectively can be challenging.

But WeWork have provided a solution to this issue on so many occasions over the past 6 months. My team and I have used WeWork spacess in Sydney, Los Angeles, London, Madrid, New York..the list goes on. They have hundreds of office spaces all over the world and everything you need – fast WiFi, free (and unlimited!) tea and coffee, and beautifully designed spaces. It’s ideal for meetings, solo focus time, or a co-working sesh with your friends. I’ve actually been using their spaces ever since April 2020 back when I was based in Cambridge – I remember writing issues of this very newsletter whilst there. And I just love the vibe at WeWork – it’s always full of entrepreneurs and freelancers, and I’ve met so many cool people over a cup of coffee during the past four years.

So, if you’re looking for somewhere to work – whether you’re visiting a new city or just bored with WFH – WeWork means you’re never left scrambling for somewhere to take that meeting or work on your sales pitch. You can get 20% off your first 6 months of WeWork All Access using the code ALIWORKS20. Click the link here to check it out.

Thank you to WeWork for sponsoring this issue of Sunday Snippets 🙏

🎬 My New Videos

💸How To 10x Your Income – The 4 Ladders of Wealth – My friend Nathan Barry wrote an amazing blog post called “The ladders of wealth creation: a step-by-step roadmap to building wealth” which I loved and got so much value from, so in this video I’m talking through it and how you can apply it to your own life.

✍️ Quote of the Week

“If you stumble at the start of a sprint, you’re likely going to lose the race. But if you stumble at the start of a marathon, it makes no difference. All that matters is that you’ve begun running.”

From How to get started with difficult tasks by J.D.Roth. Resurfaced using Readwise.

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