Ask many professionals and business owners how many hours they work, and you’ll hear 50, 60, even 70 hours per week. The implications are that they have extremely important and voluminous work, and they are extremely dedicated and busy people.
That may well be, but research is debunking those implications; first, working longer hours doesn’t make us more productive; and second, we’re not working as hard as we think.
In The Four-Hour Work Week, Timothy Ferris combined two popular principles into one amazing phenomenon:
- The Pareto Principle (also known as the 80/20 Rule): 80% of our results come from the best 20% of our efforts.
- Parkinson’s Law: Work expands to fill the time you give yourself to accomplish it.
Here’s what happens when you put these principles together:
We will spend less time working when we focus on our most important work (80/20 rule).
… and …
We will get our most important work done when we plan to spend less time on it (Parkinson’s Law).
This week, give yourself until 5:00 to complete an important task. Then enjoy your evening.
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