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A century ago, Charles Schwab was one of the richest men in the world. The famous inventor Thomas Edison once referred to Schwab as the Master Hustler because he was always looking for a way to win an edge over his competition.

In an effort to increase efficiency of his team, he arranged a meeting with Ivy Lee who was considered the best in the business of peak productivity.

As the story goes, Schwab asked Lee to simply show him a way to get more things done.

When Lee requested 15 minutes with each executive, Schwab asked how much will would cost, and Lee replied “Nothing unless it works. After 3 months you can send me a check for whatever you feel it’s worth to you.”

During his 15 minutes with each executive, Lee explained his simple method:

  1. At the end of each work day, write down the 6 most important things you need to accomplish tomorrow. Do not write down more than 6 tasks.
  2. Prioritize those 6 items in order of their true importance.
  3. When you arrive tomorrow, concentrate only on the first task. Work until the first task is finished before moving on to the second task.
  4. Approach the rest of your list in the same fashion. At the end of the day, move any unfinished items to a new list of six tasks for the following day.
  5. Repeat the process every working day.

The strategy sounded simple, but the executive team at Bethlehem Steel gave it a try. At the end of three months, Schwab was so impressed with the results that he wrote a check to Lee for $25,000, which would be worth $400,000 today.

This past year I introduced this method to my Sati365 members, but instead of writing our lists at night, I added it to their morning practice. Results and success are determined by our ability to focus and concentrate so we can get the important stuff done first, and we all found that this simple task of starting the day with writing down the 6 most important things helped us to learn to prioritize the day and resulted in success.

If you want to improve your productivity, try starting your day with Sati365 and developing the habits of peak productivity, focus and concentration. This exercise is one of many I’ve collected to help you form peak performance habits that are proven to help you concentrate and focus by starting your day prioritizing what matters most.

Win the morning, win the day, win in your life.