Bernie Anderson
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the blog

Current musings, whatever they may be. 

Productivity Crosses Disciplines

Thinking about productivity in the context of energy is more complicated than time and more nuanced than focus. Remember the equation: 

(time + focus) x energy = productivity

This little equation is cross-disciplined, as well. 

Time is math. 

There is nothing you can do to add or subtract minutes. You can only rearrange and allocate them. So the time additive is relatively simple. 

Use a calendar to block out minutes, hours, and days. Allocate time to the things that matter most. Relationships. Planning. Major projects. Scratching the dog’s ears. 

It’s up to you. 

Focus is biology mixed with a little physical education.

There are a number of books about this, not the least important of which is “Deep Work” by Cal Newport and “Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence” by Daniel Coleman.  Learning to focus on one thing at a time with a prolonged intensity requires an understanding of brain science and some intentional practice. The brain is much like the bicep. It needs training, toning, and work-outs. It gets stronger and builds capacity. That’s when focus becomes more than an ability. Focus becomes a superpower. 

Energy is Physics

Energy is making sure sleep, food, physical exercise, and emotional health are working together for physical, mental, and emotional optimization. In other words: energy is complicated. The best way to gauge energy is to be aware. 

What time of the day are you most effective? 

What affects to certain foods and drinks have on your body and mind? 

What is optimal sleep for you? (If you say it’s less than 7 hours, you're deceiving yourself.)


Are you energized with people interaction (extrovert)? Or are you energized alone (introvert)? Or do you need a proper mixture of both (ambivert)? 

Do you need to pray or meditate or set time aside to study? 

Understanding what energizes you and when you are most energized is key to knowing how to schedule your most important activities. 

How to make the most of your days. 


How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.
— Annie Dillard