The Painless Strategy to Do More With Less

"Do more with less!" You've probably heard this said by your boss, your customers, or your parents. Nowadays, everyone is looking to do more with less. Your boss what's to spend less money to get more profits. Your customers want to spend less money and get more value. Your parents want you to do more chores every day.

If you are reading this article, you are most likely wondering how you can "do more with less". The answer is simple: stop focusing on doing trivial things.

What things are considered trivial?

Trivial work is anything that doesn't align with your morals, values, or goals.

For example, consider a person who works in a company that runs a weekly report that no one ends up reading. That person might spend 1 hour every running that report every week. The person ends up spending 62 hours a year doing a report that adds no value.

Or, think about a company that holds a 2 hour all-hands meeting every week for their 100 employees. If the majority of the employees get very little insights from the meeting, you are essentially throwing away 10,400 potentially productive hours down the drain.

Believe or not, these kinds of time wasters happen in companies of all sizes. If you want to become a person that does more with less, you need to become honest with yourself when you set your standards and objectives.

How do I prioritize?

Everything begins with your standards. When you raise your standards, it means that you designate things that you must do. For example, if it is your goal to run a marathon, you making running 10 miles regularly a must in your life. Most people fail in achieving more because it's not a must for them to reach it. It is just a nice to have.

You end up achieving what you prioritize. For example, if it is my goal to build traffic to 1 million unique visitors a month on my website, then it is a MUST for me to regularly put out unique and intriguing content multiple times a week. If my content sucks or I'm not consistent, then I will surely fail in meeting this goal.

Start by creating 3 BIG goals that you are prioritizing. Then make sure you are:

  • Crystal clear about the goal.

  • Use meaningful metrics for tracking the goal.

  • Avoid things that will detract you from this goal.

  • Effectively communicate your goal to yourself and anyone that needs to know.

In Tony Robbins' book Unlimited Power, he breaks it down this way:

  • Unlimited Power is the ability to produce the outcome you want and add value for people around you.

  • Massive action is what unites every success.

  • Ask yourself "What would I try if I can't fail?"

Double down on things that matter

Most people spend a ton of time on things that don't matter. Most people spend too little time on things that would produce amazing things in their life. You can start auditing yourself by writing down what you do everyday.

Maybe you can start by auditing your day like this:

  • Wake up (neutral)

  • Brush teeth (neutral)

  • Eat breakfast (neutral)

  • Drive to work (neutral)

  • Sit in an all hands meeting (non-value added)

  • Eat lunch (neutral)

  • Watch YouTube (non-value added)

  • Work on writing a report (value added)

  • Drive home (neutral)

  • Watch Netflix (non-value added)

  • Sleep (neutral)

Once you look at this list, you realize that the amount of value-added activities is very low. You realize that you spent a lot of your time on non-value added activities. Then you can start making decisions on how to add more valued-added (goal-contributing) tasks to your day.

If you replaced the 4 hours you spend watching Netflix with weight-lifting and running, you could contributing towards your goal of better health. If you replaced the 2 hours of watching YouTube videos with learning how to code, you could contribute towards your goal of becoming a software engineer.

Think of it like a piggy bank. It might be very empty and difficult to do it at first. But as you create a habit, it begins to get easier and easier until the habit becomes second-nature. Habits pave the road to greatness. As you continue auditing your time and replacing non-value added activities, you'll begin to do more with less.

Conclusion

Doing more with less is all about replacing trivial thing with goal-contributing activites. The more you double-down on goal-contributing activity, you'll find that your life gets closer and closer to what you want it to become. Start by applying focus and action towards your big goals. Then apply followthrough to create consistency and habit to your goals. As these things start to align, you'll find yourself doing more with less.