Most of you reading this have so many commitments, projects, and problems in your life that it probably feels that there are never enough hours in the day.
How often have you found yourself awake at 10 p.m. pounding yet another espresso in a desperate attempt to finish a project only to go to bed defeated with your biggest tasks still uncompleted?
If you’re anything like me, the answer is “A LOT!”
You see, most of us have big goals, dreams, and aspirations.
There are countless feats that we want to accomplish in our lifetimes.
We want the business, the body, the relationship, and the friends, but most of us don’t know how to get it.
We know that all of our dreams are possible, but no matter how hard we try, we can’t seem to find the focus and energy to make them a reality.
Luckily, it doesn’t have to stay this way.
Over the past year, I have devoted dozens of hours and thousands of dollars to answering one question “How can I become the most focused, productive, and energetic person I know?”
The following list of 21 hacks and habits is the answer that I found.
Let’s dive in…
21 Incredibly Simple Ways to 10 X Your Energy, Focus, and Productivity
1. Focus on Deep Work Only
From the moment we wake up we are bombarded with tempting distractions like email, social media, porn, and countless other vices.
It starts the moment you roll out of bed and it doesn’t end until you crawl back under the sheets 16 hours later.
If you’re not careful you can go through the whole day constantly checking your phone and email without ever accomplishing anything of substance.
So how can you fight these distractions and find the most important things to focus on?
Enter “Deep Work”
What is deep work?
“Deep work is classified as professional activities performed in a state of distraction-free concentration that push your cognitive capabilities to their limits.” — Cal Newport (Author of Deep Work)
Deep work is your most important work.
It might not be your most urgent, it might not be your most challenging, but it’s the work that means the most to you, the work that will push you forward, and the work that has the potential to change your life.
Maybe it’s working on your new book, creating that new online program, or finally releasing the software that you’ve been designing for years.
Whatever it is, the first and most important thing you can do to increase your energy and productivity is to focus on deep and meaningful work.
Carve out 120 minutes each morning where you will be completely uninterrupted and can focus entirely on deep work.
If you consistently do this, I promise it will change your life.
2. Create a To-Do List to Simplify Your Daily Tasks and Stay Focused
I know, I know, how much more generic can it get, right?
But here’s the thing, To-Do Lists are a productivity and focus staple for a very simple reason… They WORK!
To do lists come in all shapes and forms, find the medium that works best for you.
If you cling to pen and paper like me, use it. If you prefer to use technology use your notes app or something like Wunderlist or Checkmark.
Each to-do list should include your daily goals with a strong emphasis on the top three things you need to complete each day.
These three tasks could require “deep work” so make sure to mark them accordingly.
The worst thing you can do for your productivity is to go into each day without a clue of how it will end up.
Most likely you’ll find yourself saying yes to things you don’t want and get pulled in every direction.
Get the hard stuff done first thing in the morning and use the momentum you create for the rest of the day.
3. Delegate/Outsource Tasks that Distract You from Important Work
We all have the same 24 hours in a day.
You have the same amount of time as Oprah, Tony Robbins, Grant Cardone, and Gary Vee.
So why is it that other people seem to be able to accomplish so much more than you?
Because you are trying to do everything on your own.
By delegating and outsourcing things you hate to do you will almost immediately increase your productivity, energy, and happiness.
If you hate cleaning your place or doing the laundry, hire someone to do it for you. Hate cooking but want to stay lean? Sign up for a meal prep service to have quality food delivered to your door.
When you’re at work and take on too big of a project see if you can delegate a portion of it to someone you can count on for help.
Don’t let your alpha ego get in the way of asking for help or delegating to get more done.
4. Turn Off Your Damn TV and Start Living in the Real World
The average American watches more than 3 hours of TV a day.
Without question, the simplest way to increase your energy, focus, and productivity is to turn off the TV.
No, I’m not one of those weirdos who recommends not having a TV in your house or cutting the cable costs.
But you need to be conscious about the kinds of television that you are consuming and how much you are consuming.
If you’re a Game of Thrones or Walking Dead fan I’m not telling you to turn your back on your favorite show, I’m just saying to be intentional.
Turn off MTV, quit watching the news, and cut reality TV out of your life entirely.
If you want to enjoy a mentally stimulating TV show for an hour a day I don’t think anyone will begrudge you that.
But if you are living like the average American, you are flushing more than 24 hours of productive time down the drain each week with pointless TV programs and fear mongering news channels.
Cut back on the TV and live in the real world for the next 30 days, I promise you won’t regret it.
5. Use Your Commute to Expand Your Mind and Learn About New Ideas
We spend a lot of time commuting to and from work…how are you spending it?
It’s easy to mindlessly look at memes and watch stupid Youtube videos all day, but this is also an unbelievable time to utilize podcasts to educate yourself.
The average commute is 25 minutes a day each way or 12,500 hours. 8.68 days a year are spent commuting.
Make the most of your commute by learning something new and help you become a strong grounded man by checking out KFM podcast.
Here are some top episodes to get you started:
- Grant Cardone: The Only Difference Between Success and Failure
- T. Harv Eker: Master the Inner Game of Wealth
6. Find a Mentor or Coach who Can Help You Accelerate Your Game and Point Out Your Blindspots
“A coach is someone who tells you don’t want to hear, who has you see what you don’t want to see, so you can be who you have always know you could be.” ~Tom Landry.
The right coach or mentor will help you accelerate your career, improve your relationships and speed up your results.
When you’re going after big goals alone it can be easy to get side tracked, lose focus, and feel a lack of motivation and enthusiasm.
Coaches and mentors will give you honest feedback, increase your productivity and hold you accountable until you get your results.
For one on one coaching be sure to check out our high-performance men’s coaching program for 6 months to bring you success, results and the happiness you deserve.
7. Reward Yourself for a Job Well Done
One of the biggest problems I see in the world of productivity and focus is that people are simply too hard on themselves.
Men are quick to punish themselves for missing a deadline or losing focus, but they are slow to reward themselves for a job well done.
This is completely backwards and detrimental towards your goals.
Start rewarding yourself for all that you accomplish in your personal and professional life.
Next time you reach a major goal reward yourself!
Did you finally get that promotion? Find a date and enjoy a steak dinner.
Did you finally reach your goal weight? Hit the beach and show off your hard work.
Rewarding yourself will help you develop a success mindset, keep you motivated, and release the feel good chemical “dopamine” into your brain.
Make time to celebrate your accomplishments, no matter how big or small they are.
8. Prepare All of Your Meals on Sunday to Save Time and Money Throughout the Week
One of the easiest ways to gain more energy and focus is to prepare your own meals. Unfortunately, too many guys skip it as it seems like a lot of work.
In reality, you can meal prep once for the entire week.
Use Sunday afternoon to prep high protein, low carb meals so you can eat for energy throughout each day in the week.
Hate cooking or suck at it?
Don’t worry you’re not alone, find a local meal prep delivery service to make it even easier.
9. Spend 30 Minutes a Day Reading (Or Listening) to Nonfiction Books
“The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who can’t read.” ~Mark Twain
As Tony Robbins said, “Leaders are readers.”
There’s a reason Warren Buffett reads 4-5 hours a day and Bill Gates reads a book a week. When asked what their superpower would be, they both replied speed reading.
The world’s most successful men in the world have always know the importance of learning new things and feeding your mind knowledge.
For some inspiration, be sure to check our list of 50+ books to help you master your wealth, health, and relationships.
10. Set Deadlines to Kill Procrastination and Keep Focused
Remember when you were in college and had that final you didn’t prepare for until the night before?
Why is it that you waited until the last minute to cram?
Beside college laziness, the reason most likely was because you didn’t create a deadline for yourself. The deadline was created by your professor.
That habit can easily roll into our professional lives and affect our performance at work.
Instead of procrastinating, make it a point to set daily, weekly, and monthly deadlines for your biggest projects and goals.
11. Get Radically Accountable So You Can’t Get Away with Skipping Your Commitments
There’s a reason a workout buddy can help you achieve massive gains in the gym. You have someone waiting for you every day, especially not skipping leg day.
You have a commitment to that person to show up every day.
When you commit to others you don’t want to let people down.
When you have accountability partners you are much more likely to stay focused on the task at hand and be more productive.
“Accountability is the glue that ties commitment to the result.” ~Bob Proctor
12. Create 30 Day Experiments to Find the Biggest Leverage Points in Your Life
A recent way I’ve increased my productivity is living life as a 30-day experiment.
Each month I try something new; it could be a new workout routine, diet, or change to my morning habits.
Why 30 days?
Habits take roughly 21-35 days to form if done consistently, every single day.
Try something new every single month. It could be adding a green smoothie a day, adding more cardio, or dropping alcohol.
These 30 day experiments are short enough to where you can see the finish line but long enough to form the habit if you do like the results.
13. Drink Coffee or Tea Throughout the Day to Keep You Energized and Fueled
Coffee is synonymous with rejuvenating people and giving morning zombies life support. It’s the reason we can’t go more than a block without another Starbucks.
Not only will coffee help you burn fat, it will help reduce your appetite and act as a natural fat burner by sending signals to the fat cells to break down body fat.
Other benefits of coffee include lowering your risk of diabetes, Parkinson’s, and Alzheimer’s disease.
Stick with one or two cups each morning and avoid all the whip cream, sugar, and other pointless stuff that is calorie ridden.
14. Find Your Productive Time
We all have a time of the day where we are most productive, make sure to use this time to get things done instead of scrolling through your feed.
For me, my most productive time is around 7-10am. I’m not trying to write these posts or work on something else at 9pm, it’s just not my time.
“If we want to direct our lives, we must take control of our consistent actions. It’s not what we do once in awhile that shapes our lives. But what we do consistently.” ~Tony Robbins
I have crafted my morning rituals around this time and wake up by 5am to make sure around 7am I’m set to tackle the hardest tasks of the day.
Study your days until you find your most productive time and create your day around it to be more focused and productive.
15. Keep a Journal Close to Jot Down Your Ideas and Tasks as they Pop Up
Journaling has become part of my morning routine and helps get any feelings or problems I’m having out on my paper.
I like to think of it as a self-learning guide and a place to help track my own progress.
You might know what you want to accomplish and might have set some big goals, the problem is that completing them is hard. Sometimes it feels so hard you just want to give up.
“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” ~Gandhi
Journaling can help optimize your creative potential and accelerate your ability to make your dreams manifest.
Studies have shown that when you sleep the subconscious mind has been scheming, problem-solving, and learning.
When you wake up, find a quiet place and write in a journal for 5-10 minutes. It doesn’t have to have any specific structure just get out what you’re feeling.
Chances are you can make a major breakthrough, develop gratitude, and help you go into each day focused and clear.
16. Avoid Social Media Like it’s the Plague (Because It Is)
I have a love-hate relationship with social media.
It’s a great way to stay in touch with people but too much of it and it will kill your focus and productivity.
Instead of waking up and rolling over to check your feed or email let it sit there.
Focus on completing your morning routine before looking and only do it for five minutes. You can check again at lunch and maybe once at night.
Otherwise, you will train yourself to make it a negative habit and your crutch when you are in an elevator, walking to work, or commuting.
17. Have a Weekly “Brain Dump” to Get Your Thoughts on Paper and
A great way to increase your focus and productivity is to a weekly braindump.
I started doing this every Saturday and have been amazed at its effectiveness.
A brain dump will help you feel more in control of your life and focus on finishing things instead of being stressed out.
“Your dream was given to you. If someone else can’t see it for you, that’s fine, it was given to you and not them. It’s your dream. Hold it. Nourish it. Cultivate it!” ~Les Brown
Often times we let the smallest things build over time to only stress or worry us when we should finish them.
The more distractions you develop over the time and will keep you away from things you need to do. Instead of focusing on the task at hand, your brain will think about the small, little things you need to do.
It could include an outstanding bill, signing up for your race, or following up with your client.
Write or type out all the stuff that is floating around in your head. Keep adding to it throughout the day and use Sunday as completion day to finish as many as you can.
You’ll be amazed at how refreshed you feel heading into the week.
18. Limit Your Alcohol Consumption to Keep Your Mind and Body Sharp
When it comes to booze we all know a few drinks won’t hurt us but more than that it can become a negative habit in your life.
Save the hard-partying days for college and focus on limiting or eliminating alcohol from your life.
Think of the last time you had a few too many and had to work the next morning, was it your most productive day?
Anytime I went to work hungover I was stopping at a drive-through, slamming an extra energy drink, and counting down until it was time to leave.
Alcohol will reduce your energy, ability to focus, and your overall productivity.
Too much of this type of activity can have you feeling hopeless, depressed, and overweight.
19. Keep your Body Hydrated and Consume at Least 1 Gallon of Filtered Water
Studies have shown that if you are even one percent dehydrated you will have at least five percent decrease in cognitive function.
Start your day off right for your best mental performance by drinking 12 to 16 ounces of water as soon as you wake up.
Keep a water bottle with you throughout the day to keep your brain fueled and energized throughout the day.
20. Exercise for at Least 30 Minutes Everyday (Even if it’s just a walk)
Hopefully exercise is a part of your morning routine as it has the ability to help trigger endorphins which will reduce stress, anxiety, and improve the functions of your brain…as well as make you look good.
Exercise is one of the most effective ways to improve memory and attention. It also can help you improve your energy when you’re feeling sluggish.
Instead of going for another coffee or energy drink for your 2pm slump, take a walk outside. Do some bodyweight squats or some pushups.
Usually, when you’re tired the last thing you want to do is exercise but studies have shown it can increase your energy more than a nap or caffeine.
21. Practice Gratitude
Each night before I go to bed I write three things that I was grateful for during the day.
These are usually little things — coffee with a friend, accomplishing a small business goal, or spending time with my girlfriend.
Once you start appreciating and celebrating the little wins you will wire your brain for happiness and increased energy the next day.
We live in an amazing world filled with apps and services that can help you maximize the 24 hours in your day.
But social media and countless other distractions can make it easy to get to the end of your day and think “What the hell did I do today?”
Everyone has the same 24 hours, make sure you use these tips to increase your productivity, energy and stay focused.
Live your life with 30 day experiments, implementing some of these and seeing what sticks.