Let’s talk about leverage.
The dictionary definition of leverage is “the power to influence a person or situation to achieve a particular outcome.”
The word derives from the concept of a mechanical lever, which amplifies an input mechanical force into a greater output force. More leverage, more output force for the same input.
Think of it as that which turns effort, in the form of time and/or energy, into results.
The more leverage you have, the more results you get for the same amount of effort.
When it comes to work, there are several forms of leverage you have.
One is whatever system or set of routines you have set up to help you work. The better this is, the more you’ll get done when you sit down to work.
Another is your mental state. You’ll get a lot more done in a given period if you are rested, alert and focused than if your tired and distracted.
It isn’t a clear distinction between the two, since a lot of routines work by helping get you into that productive state quickly.
Another benefit of leverage in this sense is that it decreases uncertainty.
If you have good systems in place, you can be very confident that if you expend effort, you’ll get results.
That by itself is an incredible motivation boost.
One form of leverage I’ve been using a lot lately is the routine of writing on my phone while commuting. At this point, it’s ingrained enough that as soon as I step on the train and grab the railing with one hand, I pull out my phone, open notepad, and starting writing.
Virtually every time the words flow, and when I’m done, it’s usually something I’m ok sharing with the world after a bit of editing.
This post was mostly written that way.
So, if you want to really get things done, be sure you always spend some of your effort on getting more leverage. Do this consistently you’ll get greater and greater returns for the same effort.