Smarter or Harder…

I’m taking a few weeks vacation so this weeks blog was pre-recorded and written prior to my departure. How smart is that? So I’ve put aside my usual thoughts and decided to write about something else: Working Smarter or Harder?

Sometimes harder isn’t better. You know the old adage: “To succeed, you just have to try harder than the next guy”. If you ask me, and pretty much any successful business person, they’ll always tell you that working smarter is better than harder. That’s all fine but what does it really mean when you’re starting an online business?

Why Smarter Will Always be Better

We live in a fast-paced time, everybody wants everything yesterday. If you can’t find it on your phone or search engine within the next 30 seconds, you huff and puff and move on.

Life has gotten to a point of being so ridiculously demanding that one of the first questions an employer asks is: “How good are you at multi-tasking?” (another myth – but more about that later) and if you’re taking too much time responding to emails, work requirements, due dates, etc…, you’re deemed a slacker if not incompetent.

Whether you like it or not, technology has made leaps and bounds in providing information to everyone. Heck, when I started working in the 80’s, I was a sales-representative for a telex company! (Am I dating myself yet?).

The good thing about all of this though is that you can get a lot done with less time — let me explain.

A few years ago, when you wanted to set-up a website for your business, you had to hire a computer guru who knew how to code HTML, lay-out the pages you wanted, tell him about the color scheme you also wanted and let’s not forget the font and size of each page. And don’t forget, the layout wasn’t the same for a desktop a tablet or a smartphone, oh no; you had to make sure that your coding was made specifically for that.

Today, with the likes of WIX, Shopify, and many others, you can have your website set-up just the way you like it within a couple of hours and be ready to either blog like I’m doing now or sell merchandise.

Add to that the fact that there are many other applications and Plugins that are available – most free – and you’ve got a safe, secure way to not only update your website rapidly but also reach out to clients and any other person who comments on your blog; just like you’re going to do after reading this! (I sure hope so!).

Fooling Yourself To Do Many Things All At The Same Time

Multitasking is like constantly pulling up a plant.
This kind of constant shifting of your attention means
that new ideas and concepts have no chance to take root and flourish.”
– Barbara Oakley

I love that quote; it got me in trouble back in the day. I was having quite the discussion about “multitasking” and how it was just a nice 80’s marketing word that had been created to show how well we could do so many things all at the same time and yet we couldn’t. Funny thing, even a computer doesn’t do two things at the same time…

A few years ago, I read a book by Gary Keller “The One Thing”. It totally changed my way of thinking and of doing things. He talks about how you can cut through the clutter, achieve better results and more importantly, dial down the stress. I so suggest that you buy yourself a great gift and search for it on Amazon; it’s worth it’s price in gold.

The one big takeaway that I loved and implemented into my life was this: mastering what mattered to me.

With what I learnt from the book, I now only plan 3 things to do during the day. If I finish those, I’ll just add another three.

Focusing on What Needs to be Done

Someone a lot wiser than me once told me that when you focus on what was requested, it’s as if you fall into a tunnel – with everything else just falling to the way-side. Becoming so focused on what needs to be done can seem as if time stands still.

I’m sure we’ve all experienced that at one point or another in our lives; we’re so focused on what we’re doing that someone talking to us has to literally nudge us to get our attention. (I’ve been told by women that men have this type of focus; but it seems to occur mostly during sports or at a preselected time that best suits them only!).

All kidding aside, by focusing on the predetermined tasks, we can get so much more done.

Using The Tools We Need Wisely

There are so many online tools available to help you succeed online it’s incredible. As I mentioned earlier, When you’re lucky enough to have found a great mentor, like mine, Dean Holland, you’re in a totally different league – your plan to succeed has not only been written – it’s put in front of you in a way that you can easily follow along, learn, apply and succeed. I’ve never been in a better position than now to have success with my online Affiliate Marketing business.

Like I mentioned earlier, if you would have told me that I could have pre-written my blog, recorded it and planned it to publish this week, I probably would have laughed and yet, here it is, I wrote it just prior to leaving on vacation; I wanted to see how I felt about writing something off the cuff instead of the usual weekly way.

I find myself so fortunate even if the past couple of months have been an emotional roller-coaster; I’ve been able to keep my business going and more importantly, continue to learn and apply the teachings that Dean provides. That is something worth being smart about!

Like what you’re reading or have questions? Don’t be shy, write it up in the comments section for me to reply and more importantly, don’t forget to subscribe to our Newsletter!
To your success…to our success!

18 thoughts on “Smarter or Harder…”

  1. Hi Marc,
    I hope you’re having a great time on your vacation. You’re right, everything in today’s world is so fast pace. That can be a good thing, and a bad thing at the same time. A (good thing) in the way that everything is at our fingertips in order to progress in our business quickly, but at the same time, the (bad way) can be, we always want instant gratification, so we try to take short cuts and lose sight of what really needs to be done at the moment. Great post and thank you. Enjoy your trip!

    1. Thank you Meredith and a big thank you for your kind words. (Yup, we are having a grand time!)
      Dean has been showing us how to work with what we have at hand – and making sure that the walk away from the “instant gratifications” we so easily can get and, sometimes crave.
      All the best!

  2. “The One Thing” book sounds like a good investment. And like you, I may have to change my planning and set to task – only three things. Still – I like to lay out all of my important “to-do’s” and decide from there – what three items I need to focus on initially.

    Now carry on with the vacation!

  3. Hi Marc,

    I thoroughly enjoyed reading your post on the debate of working smarter versus working harder.

    Your decision to explore this topic before your vacation shows your commitment to providing valuable content to your readers.

    Your reflections on the fast-paced nature of today’s world and the modern demands of technology are real and seem to take their toll on us.

    Barbara Oakley’s analogy of multitasking as constantly pulling up a plant paints a vivid picture of the detrimental effects of divided attention resonated with me, I will do better.

    I love how the book you describe, Gary Keller’s, “The One Thing,” changed your thoughts and way of doing things.

    Your emphasis on mastering what matters to you is how you do it!

    I admire your dedication to sharing your experiences and insights with your audience, even during your vacation.

    Your commitment to personal and professional growth, by your willingness to explore new ways of thinking to content creation, is truly awesome.

    Thank you for sharing and I wish you a restful and enjoyable vacation.

    1. Hi Eleanor,
      Thank you so very much for your comment; I think in reading it, I’m happy to say that I feel like I’m on the right path of not only putting my One Thing in motion but more importantly, my WHY which we discussed with Dean.
      Wishing you all the best!

  4. Hello Marc,
    “I hope you are having a great time wherever you are. One thing I love about affiliate marketing is that you can write a blog post about it, and years later someone can read it and benefit from it. You can even earn a commission while you’re on vacation, proving that we’re in the right place at the right time. Thank you for sharing valuable information about multitasking. (I’m getting tired of it on my job.) Best of luck on your journey!”

    1. Thank you Ezequiel; the Martinique island offers great food, great sunshine and the fantastic opportunity of “working” away from home! Definitely a big part of my WHY!
      All the best!

  5. Marc, hope your unwinding and enjoying being away from the rat race. 🐀 I totally agree that things have gotten so out of hand with all the instant gratification that the details and personality seem to take the brunt of the beating. Enjoy the VaCa!

    1. Thanks for your comment Ken, I’ll definitely make sure to enjoy the time off as best as I can – That way, I can plan the next one as well!
      All the best,

  6. Hi, Marc!
    Have a wonderful vacation!

    I’ve been working on focusing lately. I didn’t realize it would take so much concentration- LOL! That’s part of the definition, isn’t it?! But, seriously, I didn’t know how much I don’t concentrate but stay ever multi-tasking, so reading your post today is very timely and helpful.

    I’m surprised by your quote regarding the plant. Is multitasking that counterproductive? I think it might be. I’ve been learning how to do what I have planned for the day and concentrate on those things while I’m doing them.

    I’m much more productive that way.
    Again, this might sound obvious. But I had no idea how unfocused I was.

    Thanks for the plant quote. I’m playing catch-up in my list and I’m tempted to do much more than what’s in front of me. I’ll zero in and grow some roots 🙂

    Enjoy your time away!

    1. Hi Nakina,
      Love your comment and the analogy! To me, planting my roots and making sure I can grow my business is a big way for me to also make sure that I’m working on my WHY!
      It’s so easy to get lost in all the things we have to do and yet, when you take two steps away from it all, you can see that some of them aren’t that important.
      Making sure that you are productive during the day will mean that you can focus on what needs to be done and will get you closer to the goal: be financially independent.
      Wishing you all the best!

  7. Marc, I hope you’re having a fantastic holiday and time to relax. I’m really impressed that you got this already and published it before you went on holiday. That’s a great mindset to have. You could’ve just left it for when you got back but then that would’ve put you behind. Just think in the very near future when your business is up and running while you’re on holiday, you’ll be making money while you’re with your family, doing activities or even while you’re asleep. The possibilities are endless. Keep building my friend take care, Atif

    1. Thanks Atif,
      In all honesty, I was quite proud of myself for having done so. With all the preparations I had to do and taking care of work while I was away, I wasn’t sure that I could both write and record my weekly blogs – this Friday is also in the tube to be broadcast!
      As for your mention of making money while away, that my friend is the exact situation I want to be in!
      All the best,

  8. Marc,
    What an awesome achievement to have your blog ready for posting before your vacation! I hope you’re having a fantastic time. I totally agree with your approach of focusing on one task at a time. It’s been more beneficial for me too—I’ve noticed that trying to multitask often leads to getting less done overall.

    1. Hi Sherri,
      thanks for your comment; definitely a big plus to have these ready before I left – I surprised myself in getting them done though LOL!
      Being able to do one task at a time is also a great plus to develop.
      All the best!

  9. Marc, I think you may have just jumped into my brain and fiddled around with my thoughts (weird mental picture, I know… sorry). Seriously, “working smarter not harder,” is my go-to saying! It’s a creed I live by, so I was VERY excited to read this today! Except, mostly when I’m referring to this saying I’m referring to, “take your shoes and clothes with you when you go upstairs instead of later making a special trip,” or “your hands should be full going up the stairs or down the stairs in an effort to avoid unnecessarily walking up and down the stairs later,” kinda thing. But you are so, SO right about that there is an unnecessary push or encouragement by employers for their employees to multi-task. Although I can multi-task if I have to (in my past life as a full-time doctor + entrepreneur, it was inevitable) I would much prefer giving all of my attention to one thing at a time. I produce my best work this way and I limit mistakes of things that get easily overlooked. I love this, Marc, and it’s very, VERY important for all of us to be reminded of this again.

    1. Hi Lauren,
      Great comment and we definitely need to think over the efforts we make or take when doing tasks. I’ve always loved the fact that I can question how to do things better and still feel as if I’m productive – even if I’m not multi-tasking! (if that makes sense! 🙂
      All the best,

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