Well that’s a depressing headline (and probably clickbait). Or is it?
In my opinion, it is very empowering and something I think about daily. It is the realization that we can choose what to focus on and that not everything is important. In fact, if everything is important then nothing is important.
So far, Vilfredo Pareto is undefeated. There is no escaping his principle that the majority of outputs are based on a small number of inputs – usually referred to as the 80/20 rule.
This often seems to get lost at work. We see all the tasks and projects that need to get done and can’t separate vital few from the trivial many. One thing I like to do is record all of the “fire drills” and madcap requests that come up and look back on them over time. Most of them were important because they had the attention of the moment, not because they actually had a huge impact.
I find it funny when people humblebrag about their insane work hours. These people are always basing output on volume instead of impact.
What is the point of perfecting something that will have little impact on overall results? Sometimes good enough is good enough. The key is identifying the crucial, high impact work and doing everything to optimize it.
If you are awake for 16 hours today, that means that about 2 to 3 hours will have the biggest impact in both your career and personal life. I hope we all use that time wisely.