Focus on Big but start with small.
In this book, the author talk about extraordinary success. To achieve extraordinary success you should narrow your focus on one thing. The process of doing one thing is going small and ignoring all the other activities and start doing what you should do. This summary teaches you that not all things matter equally. Something matter more weigh than others. When I was a kid. I think big success is time-consuming and complicated but luckily I find The One Thing by Gary Keller and it completely changes my thought process.
Example: Imagine, you place dominos in a series one after the another. The first domino is of two inches but the second domino is increased by fifty percent. Then, the third domino is increased by fifty percent from the second domino and so on. When you reach the eighteen-domino, the height of domino will parallel to the leaning tower of Paris. When you reach the twenty-three domino, the height of domino will cross Eiffel Tower.
Now at fifty-seven, you would bridge the gap between earth and the moon. This is known as domino effect. So, when you think about success, your goal is to reach to the moon. To reach there, you need to build a habit and discipline so you can keep going. When you do one thing right then the next. Over time, it adds up and brings extra ordinary result.
There is always one thing or one person or one skill.
Looking at the story of any successful person. You will find out there is always one person or thing that make them successful. It is either in the form of a person or skill. We each have talents or skills, but extraordinary people polish the skill that shines through them.
Example: Take Bill Gates, in high school, Bill has passion for computers, which lead him to develop one skill, computer programming. In high school, Bill meets the person, Paul Allen. Paul gives Bill the first job and becomes the partner in forming Microsoft. Then, they send a letter to Ed Roberts. Ed Roberts changes their life by giving them a shot to write code for Altair 8800. For Bill, Ed Roberts was his one person.
Difference Between success List and To-do List.
So long we have talked about to do one activity. Now when you have a list of activities, how you decide what to do first activity? A to-do list is used to carry out tasks that you think you should do. The first thing in your to-do list is the first thing you thought of. But as you grow up, you have a choice what you do first and what you will do second. Our success is defined by our choice. If success is defined by choice. Then, how we make a good one?
Here is a catch. You can make a success list. The purpose of the success list is to bring extraordinary result. Success list is not defined by the task your thought. It defines by your someday goal. The drawback of the to-do list is that to-do list will keep you busy all day long but does not move you towards your goals. To turn the to-do list into a success list you should use Pareto’s principle. It says 80 % outcome bring by 20 % efforts. It means a small amount of work in the right direction can bring 80% outcome.
The concept of multi-tasking.
Everyone accepts multitasking is an effective way to do things. When I was a kid, I think it is something I should. But sooner I understand, multi-tasking is neither effective nor efficient. The concept of multitasking arrives from computers. But, even computers process one piece of code at a time. When computer multi-task. It switches back and forth so that both the tasks can complete.
However, you can do two or more tasks at once such as walk and talk, listening music and walking. Now the question is how we do two things in parallel? Our brain has channels. As a result, we can process a different kind of data in a different part of the brain. If you want to know more about different parts of the brain and how they work. You can read The Power Of Subconscious Mind by Joseph Murphy.
The myth about discipline.
Majority of people think success is a marathon of discipline actions. But it is not the complete truth. Success does not wish you to become discipline person. Success is a short race enough discipline to form a habit. When you discipline yourself, you are training yourself to behave in a specific way. Running a behavior long enough will become habit. Habits are hard only in the beginning. Over time, it becomes easier to sustain. Now the question is how long it takes to form a habit. It takes 18 days to 254 days and the range vary from person to person.
The patience test how long you wait?
Every morning when you climb down from the bed. You have a full charge willpower batteries. As the day go by, the will power bar shrink. At the end of the day, the willpower exhausted. If you use your will power at once. Then, there is less energy available for the next, unless you refuel it. Once the supply of will power ended, you will reach to your default setting. Now the question arises. What is your default setting? Your default setting will define your level of achievement. When you arrange your task and carry out the vital task at the beginning of a day. You can use your willpower wisely.
The Focusing Question.
The Focusing question helps you to bring the extraordinary result. Results come from the choice we make and the action we take. The focusing question force you to do your best and make quality decisions. It also helps you to align with your track. The focusing question is: “What is the one thing I can do such that by doing it everything else will be easier and unnecessary” .
Framing of Focusing Question.
The focusing question helps you to find one thing in any situation. It will clarify what you want in the future and drill down what you should do now to get there. Asking a great question is a simple process. But here is a catch. How you frame your question is vital than asking the question. Here are the four ways to frame the question.
“What can I do to increase sales by five percent this year?” The question aims you for specific direction but does not aim for big. As five percent of sales can meet by market shift.
Second, “What can I do to increase my sales?” This is not a good question to ask as it does not produce any result. The question lacks two key elements. How much sales increment and by which date.
Third, “What can I do to double my sales?” It is a good question to ask as it is big. But, the problem is, the question was lacking in time. At what time you want to double your sales?
Forth, “What can I do to double my sales in six months?” This type of question produces the result as it is big and specific. If you want to excel in any area of your life. You must ask this type of question to get the result.
Happiness depends on the Purpose.
You should have a definite purpose in your life. When you have a purpose, clarity comes faster and help you to make quality decisions. The purpose set a benchmark to work and earn money to fulfill your dream. Without purpose you will never know when you have enough money.
Human desire continually search for the thing that makes him happy. But acquiring money will not make you happy. However, it will bring some joy for a moment. The problem is once we get what we want, sooner our happiness vanishes. We become accustomed to what we have. This happens to everyone and leaves us bored. Then, the next morning, we get up and chase something else’s to add more happiness in our life.
It find out, there are five factors that contribute to happiness: positive emotion, pleasure, achievement, relationship engagement, and meaning. The secret for lasting happiness is to do what you love to do.
The time management system.
What type of time management system do you use? The trick is if everyone has the same amount of time then why some people earn more than others. The successful people are the most productive people. Because these people get more done in less time and produce a far better result.
Now you can say, how we use our time, define the money we make. Then, the best way to describe a time management system by how much money it makes. To manage your time and produce more result. You need to create time blocking system. To create time blocking sytem you need to specify time for planning, vacation and for doing one thing.
Planning for someday goals.
Goal setting is use to drill down your someday goal to daily, weekly, monthly so you can reach your goal. To achieve someday goal, you need to string together powerful moment one after the other. Goal setting helps you to drill down your giant goal to the manageable activities you should do now. Once you adopt a simple way of thinking, you can save yourself from distracting world and do the thing that move you towards your goal.
Majority of people do not succeed to reach their goal. As they do not connect their today to all tomorrows. When you begin each day, you have a choice. You can ask yourself, what should I do? Because when you have a purpose. There will always some activities you need to do, so you can keep going towards your goal.
Above article is the extract version of the book “The One Thing” written by Gary Keller.