Believe it or not there is a most important part of productivity.
And it has nothing to do with a productivity “system” or time management.
No, the most important part of productivity is and always will be one thing: you.
I know this might sound obvious, but I’m constantly amazed by how many people seem to miss it completely.
Related Article: Are You an Almond or a Peanut? Two Ways to Become More Productive
If you’ve ever been a dog owner, you’ll know that there’s a massive difference between different dogs’ personality types.
I’ve had a few dogs in my life—a number of mutts, a German Shepherd, and a Jack Russell Terrier.
Some of the dogs I’ve had were like walking carpets, always looking for a place to lie down in the sun.
Other dogs were high energy and needed to run around every day to keep from exploding.
I don’t mind either kind of dog.
But there is one key difference between dog breeds that has always been important to me. And that’s how trainable they are.
Take a German Shepherd, for example. That dog is widely known to be one of the most versatile dogs because it can be trained to search for explosives and drugs, herd sheep, perform search an rescue, or hunt. It also makes for a loyal guard dog and a great pet.
In other words, German Shepherds are highly trainable.
But not all dogs are as versatile or easily trained.
Take the Afghan Hound, for example. This dog needs to chase prey and think for itself. It is highly independent, and virtually no amount of training can change that.
In other words, the Afghan Hound does what it wants to do.
What Kind of Dog are You?
Okay, I know what you’re thinking: What could this possibly have to do with productivity?
Well, let me explain.
So many of us spend all our time and energy trying to become German Shepherds, when we really need to find ways to be more like Afghan Hounds.
We worry about being all things to all people.
We try to please our bosses, colleagues, friends, spouses, kids, and clients.
We want to be like the German Shepherd—useful in every situation.
But the problem is that the German Shepherd spends its entire life helping other people accomplish their goals.
Don’t get me wrong. German Shepherds are incredibly useful. It’s just that, if they have any goals or dreams of their own, they never accomplish them.
The Afghan Hound, on the other hand, does exactly what it wants to do, no matter what. It wants to hunt and run. So it does.
Related Article: The Law of the Glass Ceiling
The Most Important Part of Productivity: Your Mindset
One of the things I consistently spend a ton of time on with clients is the mindset shift needed to go from being a German Shepherd to becoming an Afghan Hound.
Because, if you become the sort of person who is “useful” to everyone else, you are virtually guaranteeing that you will never accomplish the goals you have for yourself.
The most important part of productivity is you because only you can put yourself in control.
And when you’re in control—of your time, your focus, attention, and energy—you can become virtually unstoppable.
In my book, The 47 Laws of Success, I call this the Law of the Hero and the Author. And I go into much more detail.
(If you’re interested, you can find out more about this book here: https://www.amazon.com/47-Laws-Success)
But, in the meantime, remember: The most important part of productivity is and always will be YOU.