by Perry Marshall
One of the most important things that successful people do is time block.
The worst thing you can do is spend your entire day reacting to whatever email, phone call, text message, Facebook post or crisis that stumbles into your world.
This is a recipe for an incredibly busy day, that rushes by - and at the end of the day you feel you have accomplished NOTHING. (And you're exhausted and broke.)
The best way to operate is to only do certain things at certain times.
Do NOT start your day responding to emails and reacting to stuff. That's a recipe for doing $10 an hour work and missing out on all the $1,000 an hour work, jumping over the dollars to grab the pennies.
Here’s A Good Recipe For Executing Your Day:
1. WITHOUT your phone, tablet or computer, start your day with a notebook, a cup of coffee, and pray / journal / meditate / center yourself. This almost never feels like $1,000 an hour work, but trust me, it is. I do this EVERY DAY without fail. NEVER start your day by reacting to emails or text messages.
2. Before you shift gears, plan your day. Plan your goals and questions for the day. Decide what to delegate.
3. The first thing you should do is the thing that requires the biggest injection of clarity and creativity. For me it's the writing that needs to get done for the day. I'm freshest in the morning (as are most people) and for the typical person, the most productive streak in the day is likely to be 8 a.m. to 11 a.m.
Please keep in mind, most of us realistically are going to have a 2 to 3 hour window where we can be super productive. Rarely are any of us smashingly productive for 10 hours at a stretch - or even 6 hours. You need to know when that golden 2 to 3 hours of the day is for you. That's your prime time. Set aside the "reactive" stuff for later.
4. The other great choice for a first thing to do in the morning is check your stats and think strategically. Twice a week my leadership team goes over the stats for the whole entire business - the revenues, the cash flows, everything. If you're hands-on with Pay Per Click, then your conversion stats, your split tests, etc. are TOP priority in your business. You check those stats EVERY DAY. Do that for 90 days and you'll witness a "miracle" in your business.
Everything I described above is $1,000 an hour work for an up-and-running small business owner, it's $10,000 an hour work for a super-successful one, and it's $100 an hour work for a person who is barely getting started, which is not bad.
THEN after you've done those core tasks, you take phone calls, have appointments, deal with emails, etc.
5. Do you like swimming through molasses? Do you like slogging through a swamp? Do you like it when your brain is clogged and you can't think? One of the biggest time sucks, energy sucks, attention sucks, creativity sucks is being on Facebook (or any other media where stuff comes at you from a firehose, like when the TV news is on in the hotel breakfast room and it's CNN. Eating your breakfast and ingesting mental garbage is the WORST way to start your day).
Delete the Facebook app from your phone and find an accountability partner and resolve with that person to never CONSUME Facebook before 5 p.m. during your day. All that does is feed random "free radicals" into your mental space.
Whenever you feel the urge to get that "entertainment fix," instead read something deliberate (that's what the Kindle app is for) or doodle or journal or listen to 5 minutes of a well-chosen podcast.
Do NOT fling yourself into social media or any form of media outside of your strict control, expecting to get entertained. If you do, you'll get sucked into an argument or a narcissistic "let's see how many people liked my clever post" because that is a total waste of time.
I say delete Facebook from your phone because you can still log in through a browser (IF you need to), but it becomes much less tempting to incinerate 5 to 10 minutes of your day - 10 times per day - and fill your brain with free radicals.
Anybody who "wants to be successful in business" or "wants to become business-savvy" - yet "doesn't have time to watch all those videos or read those books or consume those courses" and "doesn't have time to read Perry's 'long' emails" - yet spends 5 minutes here and 15 minutes there and 2 hours and 45 minutes on Facebook, is simply LYING to themselves.
You Have to Time Block
Learning and discovering can be as stimulating and as fun as "entertainment" - if you train your brain to enjoy being challenged. However, you have to be absolutely proactive about it.
In the last several months, I've invested over 100 hours architecting Facebook ads, and actually ON Facebook maybe 2 hours.
The average American spends 5 hours per day on Facebook.
That's good for advertisers.
It's bad for everybody else.
It's good for you if you advertise. It will put you in the 5 percent that control 95 percent of the attention in the world. If you're the chef in the kitchen of a restaurant, you MAKE the food. You don't EAT it.
We're not those guys who spend 5 hours in the restaurant eating a leisurely 7-course afternoon meal. Planet Perry members are chefs in the advertising kitchen. We make great dishes, we serve them up and we impress the judges.
And we make the customers happy, which makes the cash register ring.
P.S. Adopt these habits and your whole life experience will change. Give it one month and watch the transformation.
Related: Do you know the highest value skill you can cultivate?
What’s the other $10,000 an hour skill?
My friend Greg Timms runs a church in Chicago. He asked me to teach on this topic.
This was my answer:
About The Author
Perry Marshall has launched two revolutions in sales and marketing. In Pay-Per-Click advertising, he pioneered best practices and wrote the world's best selling book on Google advertising. And he's driven the 80/20 Principle deeper than any other author, creating a new movement in business.
He is referenced across the Internet and by The New York Times, The Washington Post, INC and Forbes Magazine.
Perry S. Marshall & Associates
159 N. Marion Street #295
Oak Park, Illinois 60301