How do I use the ‘30% Rule ‘to improve my creativity and focus at work?

  • Michael Thompson is a writer and leadership and communications strategist.
  • She spends two hours each day walking, hanging out, or hanging out with friends.
  • Leaving 30% of his work day untouched, he says, has improved his creativity and focus.

For decades, Dean Sullivan, founder of the popular business training program “Strategic Coach,” says he is completely off work 155 days a year.

Michael Thompson author medium head shot

Author Michael Thompson.

Michael Thompson


In the 210 days he works, he says his main strategy for focusing on the right tasks is to leave 30% of his day untimely. Sullivan says creating this window every day allows you to focus on growth through new opportunities and ideas, instead of spending 100% of your day on your current workload.

When I first found this advice three years ago, like most things that seem good in principle, I thought it wasn’t possible. At the time, my wife was walking to her office an hour away from home and I was struggling with my work with my two young children. I thought for sure that leaving about two hours untouched would stop my production, but I was wrong.

Following Sullivan’s advice and first scheduling my free time, in three months I was transformed from a passionate creator to a well-paid one, despite being relatively new to the world of online writing and coaching. Here’s what the 30% rule of thumb helps me to do.

1. I can create more ‘Eureka’ moments

It is not a coincidence that many people come out of the office with their best ideas. More often than not, the key to connecting with my ideas is to give them a place to breathe. Since accepting the 30% rule, every day from 12 noon to 2 pm I shut down my computer and just do it. I use this window for an afternoon walk or jog out of the house, to spend time learning Spanish, to go shopping for rent, or simply to allow myself to go out.

By building this space, I have been able to come up with a steady stream of ideas for a bi-weekly article over the past three years. I can’t count the number of times I’ve thought of a suitable liner for a client project or opened my mind during an afternoon walk. When I get back to work at 2pm, I feel refreshed and ready to concentrate as much as I can in the afternoon.

2. I have time to pay attention to my network

In addition to leaving home, I use this unscheduled time to meet new people or meet old friends. It may be basic, but it saved me money when COVID-19 came on the scene. Like most people, I missed midnight work contracts. But thanks to my active habit of reaching out to people and maintaining good relationships, people in my network have come up with new opportunities that have helped me to put something that was canceled.

Before implementing the 30% rule, I was interested in seeing the network as a “if time permit” function. Spending time actively to stay in touch with people has opened my eyes to the fact that maintaining strong networks is much easier when done on a continuous basis. We all know the importance of networking – most of the time, the opportunities we are given are a direct reflection of the company we hold.

It doesn’t have to be constantly on the move – maintaining your network can be as simple as sending a quick email or leaving a short voicemail to let someone know you’re thinking about them.

3. I have improved my ability to prioritize

Having a million things in your mind is the fastest way to destroy your primary goals.

Getting as close to non-negotiation as possible with my allotted time – combined with a short-term time-limiting strategy to work – forces me to really think about what works really well for me and I Helped prevent him from doing what he did not do.

One of the ways I do this is by following Sullivan’s advice to keep my daily to-do list in three tasks. Each evening, before I finish work, I take 10 minutes to map out my tasks for the next day and then write them down on individual notebooks. It allows me to start each morning with clarity. Seeing a stack of completed tasks also reminds me that even on those days when I feel like I’m not good enough, I really am.

How To Get A 30% Rule To Work For You

The key to a 30% rule of thumb is to break your calendar at the end of each week and actively set aside time for yourself for the next week. first –Before being bombed at the request of other people.

I’m at my best when working on three-hour time blocks and to complete 2022, I have a two-hour break in the middle of the day written in my old school calendar above my desk so it appears. If you do well in short-term blocks, try to spend four to 30 minutes throughout the day and use your environment as much as possible to change your environment. Turn around , etc.

Following the 30% rule is not always easy – of course there are days when my kids or customer dates pass at this time. But the best part is – because I’ve already created “open” time in my schedule, I don’t need to work hard or be late if I sometimes get off course.

If you are an entrepreneur or you work remotely and do not need to spend all day on your computer, give a 30% rule shot. If you are back in the office and working from 9 to 5, suggest it to your manager or team – Scheduled flexibility has been shown to increase job satisfaction and reduce work-related stress.

It took me a long time to learn that always ‘active’ is really the enemy of production. Now that I’ve first experienced the benefits of time scheduling, the idea of ​​working harder to do less is almost as unattractive as allowing for better connectivity to points.

Michael Thompson is a communications strategist who helps individuals and organizations grow their influence in the new world through the power of words. For more information on his work, visit over here And get a free 12-step guide to becoming a more memorable storyteller and inspirational writer.

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