This 30-Second Habit Will Change Your Life (And Productivity)

There are no shortcuts to success and productivity.


Not everything that provides amazing results needs to take hours of practice or huge amounts of energy (phew!).

What you are going to learn here literally takes 30 seconds (OK, maybe a full minute sometimes), but it will have a lasting effect on how you do things.


Here it is:

The 30-Second Habit

Immediately after every lecture, meeting, or any significant experience, take 30 seconds — no more, no less — to write down the most important points.

Easy, right?

Here’s how to make this tiny habit work for you and why it is so powerful.

1. You Must Act Quickly

Do it immediately upon finishing your reading, or meeting, etc.

Do it while you are still completely immersed into the experience. 5 minutes later your takeaways will have changed because your mind would’ve moved on to the next thing on the agenda. 30 minutes later it becomes even worse because you have already forgotten some of the information you consumed earlier.

Do it immediately. It’s important.

2. Take No More Than 30 Seconds

30 seconds is the ideal time for this.

Take more than that and you risk starting to over-analyze things which defeats the purpose of the exercise.

Of course, if you take 35 or even 40 seconds, the world is not going to come to an end, but don’t stretch it to 2 minuter. It is hard work to stay within that limit, but it will train you to quickly separate the signal from the noise, the essential from the non-essential.

3. Capture Only The Important

This is not note-taking or summarizing.

Detail is a trap. You have only 30 seconds so make them count.

Read between the lines, catch the essence of the conversation, extrapolate the most vital piece of information.

When you are starting out, it is often helpful to write down just ONE take-away. As you get more used to the process, you can start adding more than one (if you have the time)

4. You’ll Remember Things Better

It is hard to believe that such a tiny thing can pack so much power, but this habit provides a double punch.

Not only does it make you remember things better because you took the time to figure out what was the essence of the information, but… because you are physically writing that take-away down, you’ll remember it for much longer.

It is almost like you get it embedded in your brain.

5. You’ll Learn To Pay Attention

This to me is the most important benefit — you learn to pay attention.

You learn to separate the signal from the noise. You start listening better. Asking better questions. Reading between the lines.

And the best part?

You start doing all of this automatically, with little to no conscious effort.

Your Turn Now

It might seem a little counter-productive to write all of this for something that takes 30 seconds, but unless you know how it works and why it works, you are not going to put it to use.

The major take-away from all of this?

Use it.

You owe it to yourself to at least test it out a few times. The most you can lose is a couple minutes, but the upside is literally limitless.

Read the full blog post and get free productivity training here.

Kosio Angelov is the #1 Amazon bestselling author of the “Lean Email Simple System” and a master trainer in the art of “doing the right things, the right way”.

Follow him on Medium, subscribe to his “Successful By Design” productivity show on YouTube and learn how to break the busyness bubble, achieve exponential productivity and live life by design, not by default.

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