[This is part 3 in the RPG Productivity Player’s Guide series.]
When playing a game, sometimes you’re content to simply have fun while playing, while at other times you want to make progress as soon as possible. If there’s an enemy bothering you, or a target you need to destroy to advance, nuking it with a powerful spell or an actual nuke may be your best course of action. Nuking and spiking assure maximum impact on the target.
Let’s translate that into real life. The goal of this series is to make you more productive; meaning creating maximum results in a minimum of time. You want to create maximum impact so to speak, so what does nuking and spiking look like when it comes to productivity?
We’ve talked about the importance of a megaplot already and how you can prioritize your tasks. But when you’ve done that, how do you go about executing whatever you need to do in the best and fastest way possible?
Find Your Rhythm
All men are created equal, but not everyone is the same. Use your natural biorhythm to plan your most intense work when you’re sharpest. I’m a morning person for instance, which means that I’m at my best between 8 and 12 am. If you’re like me, keep your mornings free from meetings, calls, appointments, and boring stuff as much as possible.
Block your calendar so you have at least two hours of uninterrupted time in your ‘best hours’ to create. Don’t start work by tackling email or other routine ‘must do’s’, save that for the periods when your focus has lessened.
One of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned from the brilliant book Getting Things Done, was to create projects out of bigger tasks. Many of us work with to do lists, but we’ll put many items on there that aren’t in fact actionable. ‘Organize church retreat’ for instance, or ‘Write book about social media’. These are projects with many steps, not single to do’s.
The results of putting those humongous tasks on your to do list, is that they deter you from starting on them. Plus psychologically speaking, you don’t feel rewarded when you tackle them, because you still can’t cross them off as done after doing even ten sub-tasks.
Divide bigger tasks into actionable items and put those on your to do list. Organizing the church retreat becomes check out locations on lists, check ate with senior pastor, create flyer, etc. Writing a book on social media starts with research best practices in Facebook, check out church X’s social media policy, etc. These subtasks are easily done and checked off when finished!
Do Not Multitask
It should be a commandment for anyone who wants to get stuff done: do not multitask. We all know multitasking doesn’t work, yet somehow we all believe those research results do not apply to us. Well, they do. Multitasking will break your concentration, your flow, will make you forget the brilliant ideas that popped up. Multitasking will make you waste time on things that don’t matter—not even in the short run.
Of you want to have impact in what you do, if you want to create a maximum results in a minimal amount of time, turn off all notifications and distractions and do one thing at a time. You’ll get so much more done and not only that, what you create will be better.
Work From Your Strengths
I’ve saved the most important bit for last. You will have the most impact in the areas of your strength. Too often, we waste time working on our weak areas, trying to improve them.
An example: I suck at design. Seriously. Memes are about the extent of my design skills. It’s why Churchmag owner Eric Dye creates most of the visuals for my posts. But I don’t care. My biggest strength is not design, it’s writing. That’s what I’m good at, so that’s what I focus on.
What are you really, really good at? Focus on that. Invest time in further developing that talent, that skill, that gift. That’s the single best way to create a maximum impact. It’s the best nuking and spiking strategy you’ll ever use.
Have you discovered your strength yet? What are you doing to develop it further?