I “met” Augusto while participating in #prodchat, a weekly (7 p.m. CST Wednesdays) Twitter chat on productivity. I remember thinking he seemed quite organized and perhaps a bit extreme in his productivity methods.
For example, Augusto wakes up at 4 a.m. so he can have intentional, productive time while his house still is quiet. I love sleep, so I’m not willing to consider Augusto’s beloved morning ritual.
Sleep views aside, it is apparent there is a lot I can learn from Augusto about productivity, much of which he said he learned over time through trial and error. He also admits that his “ability to get distracted and waste time is almost unlimited.” It’s refreshing to know I’m not alone there.
Here are five of my favorite productivity tips from Augusto’s book:
1. If it doesn’t work, get rid of it.
Just because you paid a lot for something doesn’t mean it’s going to be useful, now or later, according to Augusto.
I love the idea of the functionality of the printer sitting out in my garage, but it never worked properly. I keep it just because I paid a lot for it. I keep thinking I’ll sell it at some point. Instead, it’s taking up space and probably housing spiders. I need to let it go.
2. Don’t be afraid of the daily to do list.
I was thrilled to see this advice because many productivity experts seem to frown upon the daily to do list. I can’t function without mine. I agree with Augusto that the list should contain no more than five items and any new items that present themselves should be evaluated against those five items.
3. Have more than one of the things you constantly use.
For Augusto this includes iPhone chargers, pens and batteries.
You gain productivity and efficiency not by looking for hours to save time, but in saving the wasted minutes and changing them into enjoyed minutes.”
4. Don’t play with your productivity tools.
You can spend more time attempting to figure out ways to be more productive than actually getting things done. Trust me, I know. I’m pretty sure Augusto learned this one the hard way too.
5. Write down the key information—the key lists.
This probably was my favorite tip in the book. How many times did I stand in Staples and look up my printer model to figure out which cartridges to buy or call home to determine what size shoes my kids were wearing? Thanks to Augusto, I stopped assuming I would remember those types of things and documented them in my phone.
These are my favorite five of Augusto’s 25 productivity tips. Some of the other tips were things I’ve heard before or that I already do. Either way, there’s much to learn from understanding what works for others and considering whether it would work for you.