Productivity Advice in 5 Words or Less

Productivity in 5 Words or Less

I’m an advocate of productivity and simplicity, and I assume most readers of this blog are as well.  So today I figured I’d hit two birds with one stone and give you the best productivity advice possible in five words or less.  After all, simple, straightforward advice is often the best advice.

  1. Define realistic goals.
  2. Start now.
  3. Plan, but not too much.
  4. Do important things first.
  5. One thing at a time.
  6. Break complex goals into tasks.
  7. Disconnect yourself from distractions.
  8. Love what you do.
  9. Learn from your failures.
  10. Celebrate your successes.
  11. Be early.
  12. Handle small tasks immediately.
  13. Batch process similar tasks.
  14. Manage your time.
  15. Use a planner.
  16. Take notes.
  17. Focus more on less.
  18. Find and follow efficient patterns.
  19. Learn productive shortcuts.
  20. Tomorrow is today’s result.
  21. Organize your space.
  22. Clear clutter.
  23. Be productive while you wait.
  24. Automate tasks and reminders.
  25. Read the manual.
  26. Learn from others.
  27. Teach others to help you.
  28. Delegate.
  29. Allocate and maximize your resources.
  30. Use the right tools.
  31. Work on goals every day.
  32. Keep it fun.
  33. Establish and maintain strong relationships.
  34. Spend time with your family.
  35. Take care of your health.
  36. Get enough sleep.
  37. Delete the unnecessary.
  38. Trust your gut instincts.
  39. Face your fears.
  40. Solve problems.
  41. Make your own decisions.
  42. Take your own advice.
  43. Try something new.
  44. Follow your values.
  45. Learn to say, “No.”
  46. Spend minutes to save hours.
  47. Validate your assumptions.
  48. Follow and speak the truth.
  49. Never cheat.
  50. Never give up on yourself.
  51. Small steps add up fast.
  52. Be meaningful.
  53. Ask questions.
  54. Identify and strengthen your weaknesses.
  55. Over-deliver on your promises.
  56. Adapt to change.
  57. Pay it forward.
  58. Stay flexible.
  59. Be open to new ideas.
  60. Challenge yourself.
  61. Be positive.
  62. Disregard negative people.
  63. Live below your means.
  64. Listen more, speak less.
  65. Think.
  66. Continuously educate yourself.
  67. Lead by example.
  68. Always do your best.
  69. Don’t settle.
  70. Communicate clearly.
  71. Treat everyone with respect.
  72. Act when opportunities arise.
  73. Quality over quantity.
  74. Do the hard stuff first.
  75. Set deadlines.
  76. Reflect on your progress.
  77. Keep track of important milestones.
  78. Follow the 80-20 rule.
  79. Urgent is not always important.
  80. Done is better than perfect.
  81. Learn skills few people know.
  82. Provide tangible value.
  83. Time trumps money.
  84. Be yourself.
  85. Find people with similar goals.
  86. Reuse and recycle what works.
  87. Patience is a virtue.
  88. Ask yourself: “Why do this?”
  89. Don’t worry about the uncontrollable.
  90. Your thoughts create your reality.
  91. Complaining just wastes time.
  92. Excel at what you do.
  93. Slow and steady.
  94. Be here now.
  95. Perform tasks with multiple positives.
  96. View things from different angles.
  97. Use your imagination.
  98. Visualize your success.
  99. Smile.
  100. Keep it simple.
  101. Finish what you start.

Please expand on this list by adding your own advice in five words or less in the comments section below.

Also, I highly recommend these best selling productivity books:

Photo by: Veo


  1. says

    Very nice post with a catchy title. Some pretty solid advice there, defining, realistic, planning, delegating and deadlines. All gold terms in productivity. Nice to see them all summed up in one nice list. :)

  2. Saul says

    1- Re-evaluate and re-prioritize periodically
    2- Compliment yourself when you succeeded
    3- Compliment others who helped you
    4- Constantly aspire to improve
    5- Thank God for being you
    Enough for one day!
    Love your website/thoughts/etc’
    Thank you for sharing you with us!
    Have a wonderful coming week.

  3. says

    “Take the first step!”

    We get so paralyzed by “what ifs” that we never make it to the first step. Do it first and worry about “what ifs” as they come. You’ll be surprised at how much easier they are to handle than to worry about.

  4. says

    A different take on “Identify and strengthen your weaknesses.” would be instead to “Capitalize on your strengths.”

    Also, couple of my favorite personal productivity tips would be “Take frequent breaks.” and “Listen to your body.” Meaning, that if you feel tired and have hard time to focus, don’t fight it but take a 20-30min break doing something entirely else and you’ll find it easier to work again.


  5. ifang says

    Think twice, act wise.
    Urgent matters, speak slowly.
    Important matters, speak clearly.
    Small matters, speak humorously.
    Accept the unchangeable.

  6. says

    Love the advice! I’m a fan of simplicity. I think all too often, we tend to complicate things for ourselves. So along one of the last points, my favorite is: Keep it simple.

  7. Vanessa says

    Great post. Simple but powerful. Stuff like is always inspiring to me.

    Thanks for the great content :)

  8. says

    A clever idea to pair up productivity with simplicity. Sometimes we make things much too complicated. Maybe to be productive, we should seal it with a KISS = Keep It Simple Sweetie!


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