“Essentialism” by Greg McKeown is a guide to the disciplined pursuit of less.
Being selective about what is essentially one can channel one’s time and energy into contributing dedicatedly towards the goals and aims that matter. The book expands on what being an Essentialist means.
– In my opinion, we have been oversold on the value of more and undersold on the value of less.
– Learn to discern the vital few from the trivial many.
– Always remember that if you are not going to prioritize your life, then someone else will.
– You can never overestimate the unimportance of almost everything.
– The core lesson of essentialism is how to get the right things done, not how to get more things done. It does not mean doing less with your time just to do less.
– Essentialism is the art of making the best possible investment of your time and energy to operate at your highest point of efficiency and doing only essential things.
– When the word ‘priority’ came to the English language, it was used in the singular form; it meant only the first important thing. We need to start using that word in its original sense.
– We need to stop measuring the importance of our day spent by how busy we were. Instead, we should celebrate the time spent pondering, meditating, and interacting with the people we value most.
– There is no shame in admitting your mistakes; you only admit that you are now wiser than you once were.
– Sometimes, what you don’t do is more important than what you do.
– The advancements in technology have resulted not only in information overload but also in opinion overload. Today a lot more strangers can share their opinion on what we should be doing.
– If it isn’t a clear yes, then it is a clear no.
– If you make one strategic decision correctly, the 1,000 other decisions will be made right.
– Ask yourself this: “If I didn’t already own this, how much would I spend to buy this?”
– When you stop trying to say yes to everyone, to please everyone, and to do it all, you will be able to contribute your undivided time and energy towards what matters.
– Strive to live a life that has fewer but better things.
– Just because you are invited does not mean you are bound to attend.
– Carefree time is the best way to stimulate careful, logical reasoning and unbound exploration of the mind.
– Practice reverse piloting: remove an activity or initiative from your life and see whether it has any negative consequences or not.
– Essentialism is about embracing more of who we are and less of who we aren’t.
– Don’t compromise on your sleep and rest. It will energize your brain and will help you make better decisions throughout your waking hours.
– To have focus, we need to escape to focus.
– The blind pursuit of success can end up distracting us from the essential things which help us produce success in the first place. Running after success can be a catalyst of failure.
– By under-investing in ourselves, we are damaging our best asset to contribute to the world.
– Understand this clearly: Their problems are not your problems.
We can either make our own choices on our terms or allow other people’s opinions to handle our lives.
– No is a complete sentence.
– Something done is always better than perfect.
– By saying yes to any opportunity, you automatically say no to several others. This is the way of life.
– A choice is not a thing; our options may be things, but the choices we make are actions. It is not merely something we have; it is something we do.
– When we give up our ability to choose, we give up our power over our lives. We become a slave to other people’s choices and our past choices.
– A non-essentialist thinks almost everything is essential. An essentialist thinks almost everything is non-essential.
– The cumulative impact of a small change in thinking can be profound.
– By busying ourselves not to get bored, we have lost the time we could have utilized to think and process.
– Making progress is one of the most effective forms of human motivation.
– Being an Essentialist means rejecting the idea that we can fit everything into one life. It is making peace with the fact that we must make tough decisions and real trade-offs.
– First, ask yourself the one thing you want to do with your life and then do it.
Many highly capable people are held back from reaching the next level of contribution because they cannot let off the idea that everything is important.
– In our world, most everything is worthless, and only a few things are valuable.
– One of the easiest and most effective ways to keep track of your life is to maintain a journal.
– Our highest priority should be to protect our ability to prioritize.
– You need to accept that you cannot always be popular with everyone.
– When you add things daily, you gain knowledge; when you subtract unnecessary things, you gain wisdom.
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“Vision, strategy, and inspiration – these three words describe me the best. I am the founder of “TheLeaderboy” dedicated to leadership and personal development. As a self-taught practitioner, I have been studying the principles of effective leadership for the past decade and my passion lies in sharing my insights with others. My mission is to empower individuals to become better leader