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If you're interested in how to be a successful writer, please also have a look at my website, www.YourWritingCoach.com and the book of the same name ("Your Writing Coach," published by Nicholas Brealey). Also check out my writing blog at www.TimetoWrite.blogs.com for a fresh tip every day on how to write well and earn money doing so.

Do come back to this site from time to time, as I will be adding more material periodically. And if you have any questions email me at jurgenwolff@gmail.com and I will try to help. I'll answer many of these questions in video form right on the blog here at focusquick.com - Jurgen Wolff




Doing the top 20%-related tasks first thing makes a great deal of sense and by not following that routine, I had my first failure so far.

I did get my other videos up on YouTube and the additional sales page for one of my Las Vegas workshops done, but the new video remains unfinished. There were a couple of unexpected events today but also I failed to tackle the 20% stuff first.

One of the people who is participating reports that her walking routine is on track and she’s also finding that it’s important to do it in the morning, before the mind can come up with too many excuses (I’ve also found that to be true in terms of going to the gym).

Another participant has been doing his 30 minutes a day of watching WordPress tutorials online and says he’s just about ready to start applying what he’s learning.

Saul B. writes, “I’m going to give this a try myself. It’s shocking how easy it is in the course of a normal day to forget the important but not urgent tasks.” I can relate to that, and it has become kind of my motto that “The hardest part of doing anything is just remembering to do it.” So thanks for checking in, Saul, and keep me posted (his 20% relates to a new business he has started recently).

Another person who is playing along is focused on website activity and got his blogging, forums research, and signing up for ClickBank done yesterday. Well done!

If you’ve been reading along and now want to join in, just go back to the first post in this series and start there, and let me know how you get on.

For me, the 20% tasks for tomorrow are:

* Finish the video!
* Do a mailing to my  list in preparation for the Sept. resumption of my Breakthrough Strategy online mentoring program
* Review and add to a report on crowd funding that’s 80% ready to go.

If you’re doing this as these posts are finished, you may want to take Saturday off–I’m working on a Saturday in anticipation of having a week’s holiday in a couple of weeks.
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Today my theme was finishing things that were mostly done but needed that final push. I’m sure you have some projects and tasks like that, too, don’t you?

One of my tasks for the day was to finish editing a video to promote some screenwriting workshops I will be doing in Las Vegas in November. I decided to go to the Apple Store to do this because I’d be able to get some help using the new version of iMovie. What I didn’t realize until I got there is that my laptop was missing a key piece of software I needed–I had it on my main computer, but not on the laptop.

Another opportunity to learn that preparation is crucial!

The other lesson is that it’s always good to have a Plan B. Yet another unfinished task on my list was to upload to YouTube a bunch of video reviews of books about creativity (in hopes of also spreading the word about my book, “Creativity Now!”).

I shot these videos some time ago and put them up on the www.focusquick.com site but hadn’t gotten around to placing them on YouTube, where there is the possibility of wider exposure (although since they don’t feature cats, people falling down, or nudity, maybe not so much…).

Anyway, since I was unable to carry out the planned task, instead I uploaded ten of these videos to YouTube with the appropriate tags,

The second task was finishing the sales page for the Sitcom Writing workshop that’s one of the Las Vegas events, and that’s done and has gone off to my webmaster.

The third was to finish the editing of the next episode of the podcast and I did that, too. That one had been hanging around on my to-do list for a while, which just goes to show we don’t procrastinate only with things we don’t enjoy, since I quite like doing podcasts.

How was your day? (You can back up and start this experiment anytime, of course)

For tomorrow I’m still in the “finish what you start” mode:

* upload the rest of my reviews to YouTube;

* finish the sales page for the screenwriting workshop sales page (to go with the sitcom one)

* finish the video I couldn’t do today because of the missing software.

Feel free to set your top 20% agenda items and play along!

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For today, my 20% tasks were to write one article each to help spread the word about two of my books and to prepare my novel proposal to send to two publishers.

I’ve done all of those, but I confess that the accountability part of the 80 20 strategy really helped. I left the preparation of the novel proposal until very late in the day. If it weren’t for the embarrassment of having to admit on this blog that I’d already failed on Day Two, I might well have rationalized leaving this until tomorrow.

I think that brings up a useful point: when you decide who to be accountable to, be sure it’s someone to whom you’d hate to admit failure–not somebody who is likely to say, “Oh well, it doesn’t really matter, you can always do it tomorrow.”

If you’re joining me, how did your day two go?

I’ve heard from another person who is joining in, and his main 20% activity is writing articles to go on his web site, to build up the amount of good content on it (which helps with search engine rankings).

My weight-loss participant reports that she has chosen walking as her exercise of choice and immediately was confronted with a rainy day on which it would have been easy to stay indoors. However, if you live in the UK, it’s best not to choose any activity that you can’t do in the rain! However, she persisted and took her walk and got “only mildly soaked.” Well done!

My three 20% tasks for tomorrow are all in the category of finishing things that are almost done so they can get out into the world:

  • finish the copy for the sales page for the sitcom workshop I’m teaching in Las Vegas in November
  • finish the editing of a video that will promote the screenwriting workshop I’m teaching in Las Vegas in November
  • finish the editing of the next Screenwriting Success podcast

Hmm, this delaying the final 20% of a task appears to be something of  bad habit with me. Another 80 /20 pattern! Of course the 80% that’s done is useless until the final 20% is done as well.

If that resonates with you, perhaps you can identify three things on which you’ve made a good start and that you now will finish.

If you care to, please share that on the comments section here (click on the post’s subject line at the top and a new window will open for your comments) or directly to me at jurgenwolff@gmail.com

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