There’s one big, fat secret at the heart of all successful goal-getting – and it’s often overlooked. Most of our goals contain some version or implication of the word, “more”. Read more, go to the gym more, drink more water, travel more, the list goes on. Noble, yes, but blah, blah, blah…
Success in the new year is and isn’t just all about doing “more”. Allow us to explain.
The real common factor here is a word that’s no stranger to you. The secret is productivity, and productivity is fueled by discipline.
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Productivity is the engine behind creating more of anything in your day to day life – even if it’s just more peace, more love, and good heavens – more sleep! It’s the how behind what-ever it is you’re trying to accomplish.
You know those people you can’t stop following on social media, or the Moms and #girlboss women you come across that seem to totally have it all together?
Well, come on, we all should know by now that none of us *completely* “have it all together”, but there are some men & women who roll in a productivity league of their own. So, today we’re rounding up their best advices and sharing them with you!
Bonus – they’re all books! So for those of you that do in fact have “read more” on your list to do in 2017, you’re in luck. Read at least 1 of these a month and you’re well on your way to achieving that goal, too!
You could think of Brian Tracy as the Godfather of goal-setting and getting stuff done with less talk and more action. Eat that frog is a metaphor for tackling the things you’re more likely to procrastinate on later, helping you to get the right things done, quickly & efficiently.
Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity by David Allen
If its simple title doesn’t make it clear enough, Allen’s book has been described by Lifehack as “The Bible of business and personal productivity.” So whether you prefer to say #GTD or #GSD – the outcome is the same. It will become your shorthand for an entire new way of going about your professional and personal tasks.
The 4 Disciplines of Execution: Achieving Your Wildly Important Goals by Chris McChesney
4DX is not a theory but a “simple, repeatable, and proven formula for executing on your most important strategic priorities in the midst of the whirlwind.” Don’t spend your time chasing after lists on lists of ‘good goals’ (meh). Discover and pursue the ones that are wildly important to you with McChesney’s powerful insights.
The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
Nothing beats a book that shoots you straight and speaks to people of all ages and places – because really, none of us are immune to the need to, want to, have to, should do, could do struggles that plague our brains on a daily basis. Covey calls for a complete “‘paradigm shift’ – a change in perception and interpretation of how the world works”, addressing both personal and professional effectiveness.
Superhuman By Habit: A Guide to Becoming the Best Possible Version of Yourself, One Tiny Habit at a Time by Tynan
Let’s be real – any book that has a child superhero on the cover is probably worth reading. Because isn’t that what we all want to feel like? Our carefree, childlike selves who went to sleep every night feeling as though we’d conquered the world? Tynan’s book addresses habits over willpower in order to create lasting change once and for all.
The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg
Duhigg is in agreement with Tynan that it’s all about habits. He relies on proven research studies and addresses the core of our human nature, giving us fresh insights to our fullest potential, rather than our limitations. His work has impacted CEOs to NFL athletes, so there’s a good chance it will help you, too.
Love productivity but hate feeling locked into one mode or method? Meier feels you.
He also relies upon a systemic system but has plenty of approved detours for when you hit a roadblock. His work focuses on flexibility and focusing your tasks around meaning significance, and mindfulness.
Ever had a long day at the hours and felt like you got nothing done? Womack believes that’s because more time doesn’t always equate to more work being done. His book is strategy based with small, incremental steps that provide encouragement and proof of progress along the way.
Profit from the Positive: Proven Leadership Strategies to Boost Productivity and Transform Your Business by Margaret Greenberg and Senia Maymin
This one combines the best of productivity with leadership tools, helping you to not only make improvements for yourself, but to have a ripple effect on others, too. Infiltrated with psychological research, its methods are already being adopted by Zappos, Google, and Amazon.
The Power of Full Engagement: Managing Energy, Not Time, Is the Key to High Performance and Personal Renewal by Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz
Engagement is the heart-beat of everything we do, so it’s worth paying attention to. When are you most engaged in a task? When are you not? Schwartz’s approach is gritty, scientifically-based, and highly practical; teaching you how to hone in on your highest energy levels and put them to work for you.
The Power of Less: The Fine Art of Limiting Yourself to the Essential…in Business and in Life by Leo Babuata
If engagement is at heart of everything, then distraction is the antithesis. As stated by the
ever-wise, Bob Goff: “What distracts us will begin to define us. You don’t have to swing at every pitch.” We think Babuata would echo the same sentiment. In his book, he advises tools and methods for eliminating the clutter and zeroing in on what matters most, especially in today’s fast-paced digital age.
Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown
Discipline. All day, erry day. To put it concisely, the way of the “Essentialist” isn’t about getting more done in less time. It’s about getting only the right things done. McKeown teaches his readers how to filter out the noise, by forcing us to apply a selective criteria for what’s essential, and what isn’t. Yes, It feels a lot like freedom.
ReWork by Jason Fried
According to Fried, you need a lot less than you think. Less as in no detailed plans, no outside investors, and holding meetings just to say you did. He inspires through counterintuitive ideas that go against the grain and challenge conventional thinking.
The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right by Atul Gawande
Have you ever been told to do it right the first time so you don’t have to do it all over
Again? Gawande believes avoidable failures follow us in every realm of organized activity. The rationale is simply this: “the volume and complexity of knowledge today has exceeded our ability as individuals to properly deliver it to people—consistently, correctly, safely.” Enter: the checklist. The not-so-innovative, but revolutionary tool for getting things done – right.
What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast by Laura Vanderkam
Having a “busy schedule” is an unacceptable excuse for Vanderkam, but one she’s willing to show you how to turn into a more productive day, and ultimately, a happier life. Originally written in e-book format, her encouraging insights have now been combined into one print format for a big impact.
There you have it – 15 books to set you up for a 2017 that doesn’t just talk about doing more, but looks your productivity killers in the face and takes back control.
Click any of the above links* to learn more &/or to order via Amazon! Pro Tip: Read the Amazon reviews for more great information and to help you decide which one to start on first!
Have you read any of the books on this list? Did we miss any of your favorites? Let us know in the comments below!
*Note: All the above links contain affiliate information, in compliance with Amazon’s Affiliates program. This is at no sort of extra charge to you, whatsoever! Happy Reading!