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Surviving the traps of productivity

Surviving the traps of productivity

In my recent existential crisis, not only did I decide to reorient the content of the blog and my ambition to make a living out of it, but I also revisited the way I approach productivity as a whole. Today’s blog post is the result of my reflections on the topic. First of all, as a productivity blogger, I want to admit that I am guilty of most of the sins I will highlight in this post. Most of us productivity gurus try to make you work harder, achieve more goals and get more done. That is the common definition of being productive in today’s corporate world. On the verge of that trend, some of the influencers are gradually starting to change this definition, focusing more on achieving the right things and guarding your time to stay focused on your priorities. After reading books like The ONE Thing and Essentialism, I switched gears in my perception of what productivity should be, but the content I was putting out seemed more aligned with the traditional meaning. I want to change that […]

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The Free-Time Formula : How to carve out time for what matters most

The Free-Time Formula by Jeff Sanders

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you’ve heard me say that Jeff Sanders is one of my favorite podcasters. But Jeff is not only a successful podcaster, he’s also an author! When I heard that he was coming up with his second book, The Free-Time Formula, I was eager to know what it was about. Jeff was kind enough to provide me with an advanced copy and I can’t wait to tell you all about it! Last year, Jeff published his second book, his first paperback ever published by a real publisher. It was titled The 5 A.M. Miracle and was basically a compilation of productivity advice. I did not care too much for the book at the time and gave it somewhat of a bad review. I felt that the writing needed improvement and that the advice was general and, frankly, didn’t bring anything new to the already crowded productivity table. Well this time, my friends, things are different. The Free-Time Formula is all original content. Jeff came up with his own framework, 7 steps to […]

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How Trello changed the way I plan and work

how trello changed the way I plan and work

As far as I can remember, I’ve always been addicted to To-Do lists. I love checking boxes as I go about my day, crossing tasks off my list give me a great sense of accomplishment. But I would often bury myself lists several pages long, feeling overwhelmed by the insurmountable task load I would impose on myself. Then Trello came into my life, and I switched from overworked and overwhelmed to poised and in control. Here’s how Trello changed the way I plan and work. What is Trello? First of all, what is Trello? Trello is a task management app based on Personal Kanban. It contains boards with lists on which you can add cards. A card is a task or project and the different lists allow you to sort your work visually. The most common Kanban board contains 3 lists : To Do, Doing, Done. You would start by creating a card in the To Do column when you get a new task, move it to the Doing column while you’re working on it, and finally, bring it to […]

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How to craft your ideal week

I used to get bogged down by the trivial stuff. There’s only so much you can do in a week, and it was easy to put my efforts on the small stuff and forget the big projects that would really make a difference. I’d spend my days in my email inbox and no big project would move forward. Then I remembered what Stephen Covey used to say : “Put in the big rocks first.” I needed to change the way I approached my weeks and make time for what was most important. I needed to craft my ideal week. I first got introduced to the idea of an ideal week when I read Living Forward by Michael Hyatt and Dan Harkavy. To make sure that our grandest goals get achieved, Hyatt suggested that we designed our ideal week to carve out the time for what matters most. When I created my life plan, I drafted an outline of my ideal week and never looked back. Like a budget for your time The idea of the ideal week is similar to […]

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Get rid of Chronic Forgetfulness with Zachary Sexton

Zachary Sexton

In last week’s blog post, I shared a new productivity system I’ve been trying out for a while, the Personal Kanban, which has dramatically changed the way I approach work and life. I’ve been introduced to this system by one of my productivity super heroes, Zachary Sexton, formerly host of the Asian Efficiency podcast. He graciously accepted to come over this week and share a bit more about Personal Kanban and some of his best productivity advices. Here’s the transcript of this exciting interview! Can you introduce yourself and your background, your why and how you are living it at the moment? “I am a writer, podcaster, teacher, meditator, skier and non-recovering business, caffeine and productivity junkie. I live in Austin, TX with my fiancée Nikida and two dogs, Gus and Morty.” Zack graduated college in 2009 with a degree dual degree in Business and Economics. He then spent a year in Washington DC working as a Senate aide. He also taught math in Denver Public Schools for 2 years. He eventually burned out. Took a year to explore ‘who am I’ […]

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Personal Kanban : a new way to approach life and work

personal kanban

While listening to one of my favorite podcasts recently, I’ve been introduced to a productivity system that is radically different from the traditional to-do list; the Personal Kanban. I was immediately intrigued by this system and decided to try it for myself. I must say that it has dramatically changed the way I approach work and life and I just had to share it with you guys. What is a kanban The Kanban methodology is very popular in product and software development after it has been popularized by the automobile empire Toyota. A kanban is a type of billboard with different columns. Some people use a whiteboard, others use a digital software, others use their office walls in lieu of a kanban, any surface with columns will do. You can even divide a page in your Bullet journal and use it as your kanban. The traditional Personal Kanban uses 3 columns : to-do, doing and done. The principle is simple. When you get a task, or project to accomplish, write it on a post-it note and stick it in the […]

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Your best year ever, at your fingertips : Review

Your Best Year Ever by Michael Hyatt

Over the years, there is one influencer I look up to most than others. Ex-CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishing, Michael Hyatt has grown quite a readership in the productivity and leadership sphere. His blog is ranked by Google in the top one-half percent of all blogs, scoring more than a million page views each month. His podcasts and books always have a place of choice in my media consumption each month. Passionate as I am with all things goal setting, I was eager to get my copy of Hyatt’s latest book, Your Best Year Ever: A 5-Step Plan for Achieving Your Most Important Goals, released this January 2nd. I read the whole thing in records time and also enrolled in the companion online course, 5 days to your best year ever. Unfortunately, this time, Michael Hyatt’s content disappointed. The course and book are divided in 5 parts, 5 steps to set and achieve your goals for the new year, or at any time really. Each step is actionable and specific steps are laid out at the end of every chapter […]

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Top 10 books of 2017 – Part 2

I consider myself a true bookworm, a library rat as we say in French. But this past year, I’ve surpassed all my reading records by reading more than 90 books! I’ve selected my top 20 books of the year in this two-part series, and here’s the final 10 books I’ve appreciated most in 2017. The Four Tendencies I’ve been waiting for the release of this book for the most part of 2017. The author, Gretchen Rubin, is part of my team of virtual mentors, and I’ve been reading everything she publishes. It is no surprise that she appears twice in this top 10! The Four Tendencies is a personality framework she has come up with that help us better understand why we can or can’t accomplish certain goals we set for ourselves, and how to harness our personalities to achieve them. I’ve written a review when the book launched.   Better Than Before Better than Before is the previous book published by Gretchen Rubin. It is all about the strategies we can implement to set healthy habits and to break those […]

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How to live a Level 10 Life

How to live a level 10 life

If I gave you a choice today, would you rather be living an amazing, awesome life you love? Or would you stick with what you’ve got? According to Hal Elrod, author of The Miracle Morning, if given a choice, we would all want to be living a Level 10 life, fully satisfied in every area of our lives. “If we’re measuring our levels of success/satisfaction in any area of our lives, we all want to be living our best lives at a ‘Level 10’ in each area. Creating your ‘Level 10 Life’ begins with creating an honest assessment of where you are.” Luckily, there’s a few ways to achieve your own level 10 lives. And it starts with a simple assessment. The Level 10 life assessment This assessment has also been called the Wheel of life assessment in many circles. It consists of writing down on a piece of paper 5 to 10 areas of your life that are particularly important to you and rating your level of satisfaction in every area on a scale of 1 to 10. Life […]

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Productivity, depression, and the challenge of being an entrepreneur

When you write a happiness and productivity blog, people expect you to be glowing, sparkling, checking everything off your to do list daily. And when I am at my best, I’d say I fit the bill quite perfectly. But on days like today, I cannot get anything done, and there’s not much I can do about it. I’ve suffered from depression since I am a teenager. At 15, my first major depression hit hard, I had to take meds and some time off from school. I even had to change schools. The doctors said that my chances of suffering from depression again in life were very high. With the help of antidepressants and therapy, I gradually started feeling better and, by the end of high school, depression was only a distant memory. Later in my 20s, depression crept back in, it came and went. I tried different meds, with astonishing side effects, weight gain, acne, all sorts of weird things, like blurry vision or falling asleep at 8 at night. Then I had a few years of solace, where my […]

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