“The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing!”
Stephen R. Cove
It has been 1 year and a half since I started my website Exodus-from-9to5.com with an online marketing company, SBI! See the About Me page if you want to know more about me and my website.
In the last 6 month I have also been studying and passed one of the Actuarial Exams.
Wait! It took me 6 months!
And it took me 1 year and 6 months to work on a website! But I still have a lot to do before it can gain enough momentum and become a profitable project!
Earlier, I heard that one of the SBIers who bought SBI in March 08 had already been making money with her website starting in April 08! I bought it in Nov 07, but at the moment my website is still tiny! Because of that, I was like “arrrrrrrrrrrrr” and was sleepless the night I heard about the fellow SBIer’s story!
1)To study and pass an exam, start with working on the past exams questions as soon as possible.
2)To make a profitable website, content is king. Just keep producing quality contents.
Make the main thing the main thing.
I have done way too much researches! I have surfed through too many successful sites, reading too much unrelated business materials, listening to too many other people’s success stories, but have spent way too little time to actually work on my own website!
I have also read many books on memory and studying, before I finally summoned the courage to actually study. Then I had spent 3 hours every other day to read the notes, before I began to work on the past exams days before the exam.
Knowing what I know now, I could have handled these two projects much more efficiently!
Are you feeling the same? Have you been doing a lot, maybe in your work, in church life, school, or in relationship, but have only mediocre result?
Time management isn’t about how much you can do, but how much can you focus on the few main things that matter and ruthlessly eliminate as much unnecessaries as possible!
For example, if you want to pass an exam, work on the practical questions as soon as you get an idea by scanning the chapters! Even though you will feel like you have learned only very little from the reading.
The key is to minimize reading time and maximize time you spend on the practical! See SQ3R reading method if you want to know more. By practicing and answering questions, it can triples your learning speed and reduce 2/3 of reading time.
Most people who use traditional, linear reading method —if you can call it a method —actually spend 80% of the time daydreaming and re-read what they just read, only to forget and have to re-read again.
This is also how you can fast-track any course. Just go straight into the practical.
Similarly, to tackle a big project such as building a website, or a business, learn ideas only before you actually need to implement them. Actions will force your brain to streamline the process, reduce daydreaming, analysis paralysis, and other time-wasting activities.
How did I fail to keep the main thing the main thing?
I failed to keep the main thing the main thing because:
- When I first started my website, I didn’t choose a topic of my passion, even though SBI! has emphasized that passion with your topic was important.
- I was afraid, so I kept looking at other people’s successful website and businesses, instead of actually working on my own.
- KISS (Keep it simple stupid!) This rule is hard to follow! I read too many books about wealth and success.
- I was afraid, so I spent too much time on studying books about learning, and reading course note, instead of moving on quickly to the past exams.
SQ3R Reading Method: It explains why and how asking and answering questions can boost reading and studying performance.
The Parato Principle: It explains how 20% of your efforts produce 80% of your results. I would suggest you find out your 20% and do more of these highly effective activities, and identify those 80% low yielding activities and eliminate them as much as possible.
Parkinson Law: It states the fact that we tend to fill the time available with invented work. I first learned about this law in April 08, and I thought I understood it, but obviously I still fell into the trap of inventing unnecessary work for myself, given the time I had to work on the website and the exam.