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Peter Koehler

What is Productivity and Why is it Important?

WHAT IS PRODUCTIVITY?

Welcome to Productivity Week Part Two.

In Part One I shared my frustration with the silver bullet approach to productivity that is so pervasive these days.

Now I want to talk about what productivity means and why we should care about it.

I think there is some confusion about what productivity is and what it is not.

For . . .

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June 21, 2016

Productivity Week

If you've read any entrepreneurship blogs or business magazines or lifehacking manifestos over the past few years you are aware of the cult of productivity.

You've probably tried some of the productivity hacks, downloaded those productivity apps, and clicked on plenty of clickbait-y articles with the latest productivity secrets. I . . .

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June 20, 2016

How I Organize & Prioritize

 
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I think one of the most valuable skills I've learned so far in my career is the power of effective prioritization.
 
While I am certainly no master, I am way better than I used to be at understanding the Pareto Principle (also known as the 80/20 rule).
 
If you can figure out what the most . . .

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April 19, 2016

Deep Work Wednesday

creating space for focus and flow

In my previous post I wrote about the challenges of the modern workplace.

Such challenges are especially relatable for knowledge workers, but from people I've spoken to across industries and trades, it seems that many of us can relate to some extent.

Inspired by Cal Newport's latest book Deep Work (which admittedly I haven't . . .

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February 13, 2016

It's Time To Fight Back

Against the Modern Workplace

The modern workplace can be an existential minefield.

Urgent trumps important.

Productivity trumps true value.

Multi-tasking trumps single-minded focus.

Interruption trumps silence.

Notifications trump airplane mode.

Meetings trump flow.

Their agenda trumps your agenda.

Before you know it, your days are sliced up into a million pieces.

It . . .

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February 12, 2016

Can vs. How Can

A mental framework

In a recent episode of On Being with Krista Tippett, the guest, Ellen Langer, describes a mental framework she recommends.

Rather than asking "can I do X?", ask yourself "how can I do X?"

She sums it up nicely:

When you ask yourself 'how do you do something?', you are bypassing your ego in some sense, you are . . .

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September 29, 2015

Effectiveness over Efficiency.

Using our limited time wisely.

I frequently worry that being productive is the surest way to lull ourselves into a trance of passivity and busyness the greatest distraction from living, as we coast through our lives day after day, showing up for our obligations but being absent from our selves, mistaking the doing for the being.
~Maria Popova, in a reflection on . . .

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May 05, 2015

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