The Only Productivity Hack You Need

John Cousins
February 7, 2023
2 min read
Photo by Sarah Dorweiler on Unsplash

Irecently wrote about clearing the decks for focus and flow.

Here are some more thoughts you can use to reduce overwhelm and get in the zone:

Increase focus by eliminating as much as possible.

Passion and energy become focused when you can concentrate.

Prioritize and identify your most important work.


Parse the important from the urgent.

Then set up your environment so you can concentrate all your thoughts upon the task at hand.

The sun’s rays do not burn until brought to a focus.

- Alexander Graham Bell

Minimalism is the only productivity hack you need.

Mies Van Der Rohe

Audit and edit.

Do an audit of your life and list everything you’re doing.

Identify what’s non-essential.

Then eliminate it or at least shelve it until you’ve got the bandwidth.

Be ruthless. If something is anything but essential, let it go.

Killing Your Darlings refers to having to edit out something you love to make the whole better. It sucks. It’s the hardest thing to do and the most crucial.


The practice of decluttering is a fundamental part of simple living. Japanese author Marie Kondo popularized the idea and benefits of decluttering with her book, ‘The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up.’ Here is the graceful way she suggests shedding stuff:

‘The process of assessing how you feel about the things you own, identifying those that have fulfilled their purpose, expressing your gratitude, and bidding them farewell, is really about examining your inner self, a rite of passage to a new life.’


Release the psychological burden and allow yourself to get on with the important stuff.


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John Cousins
Author, Entrepreneur, & Teacher

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