How to do things effortlessly

“Effortless: Make it Easier to Do What Matters Most” by Greg McKeown

How can we become effortless in what we do? There are so many things covered by this book, but these are the essentials:

Make the most essential activities the easiest ones. Stop filling our head with unnecessary thoughts or needless emotional burdens, clear up the clutter in our head and heart. Make our tasks fun to do. Rest properly and don’t overload ourself or push ourself to burnout. Break our tasks down into several steps and make the first step very easy to do. Set a manageable pace. Start with trash and edit as we progress forward.

Moreover, get rid of unnecessary add-ons. Simplify. Automate functions that can be automated. Have a checklist or a cheat sheet. Seek to understand the principles of things (the why and the how) rather than only the isolated info (the what). Write clear messages that are hard to misinterpret. Leverage trust. Prevent problem before it happens. Define what “done” looks like. Produce residual results. Find ways to make every day a little easier.

McKeown then ends the book with a very moving story that completes it in a full circle, story that inspired him to produce the effortless principles, which prompted him to conclude that “Whatever has happened to you in life. Whatever hardship. Whatever pain. However significant those things are. They pale in comparison to the power you have to choose what to do now.”

Indeed, whatever tasks or challenges we have in front of us we can choose to tackle them by overcomplicate things or we can decide to do them effortlessly. The way we respond is still within our control. And this is deep, coming from his own personal experience.

“The Effortless State is an experience many of us have had when we are physically rested, emotionally unburdened, and mentally energized. You are completely aware, alert, present, attentive, and focused on what’s important in this moment. You are able to focus on what matters most with ease.” McKeown couldn’t summarize it any better. Hope Eve can recover and get back into her old vivacious self.