How to Be a Productivity Ninja Book Summary - How to Be a Productivity Ninja Book explained in key points
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How to Be a Productivity Ninja summary

Graham Allcott

Worry Less, Achieve More and Love What You Do

4.4 (577 ratings)
25 mins
Table of Contents

    How to Be a Productivity Ninja
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    You can train yourself to become a productivity ninja.

    There’s no shortage of books, apps, and programs promising to help you achieve extraordinary levels of productivity. They’ll teach you how to run on 3 hours of sleep a night, work on 17 tasks at once, and answer your emails in nanoseconds. In short, they’ll turn you into a productivity superhero – or so they promise.

    Here’s the problem with that. Superheroes don’t exist. And unless you happen to get bitten by a radioactive spider, you’ll never achieve anything you could really call superhuman levels of productivity.

    Ninjas, on the other hand, do exist – and not just the ones trained in Japanese martial arts. In the world at large, the term “ninja” simply means a person with elite skills and a focused mindset. By employing the right techniques, anyone can become a ninja.

    The key message is: You can train yourself to become a productivity ninja. 

    What qualities does a productivity ninja have?

    To begin with, a ninja keeps her cool. Even when a ninja has a spiraling to-do list, she cultivates the calm mindset needed to tackle tricky decisions and balance competing priorities. She has processes in place to ensure that no task slips through the cracks. As a result, she’s never overwhelmed. 

    A ninja is ruthless, too. She says no to tasks and obligations that don’t serve her ultimate purpose, and she doesn’t tolerate unnecessary interruptions and distractions.

    On top of that, a ninja is weapons-savvy. But remember, we’re talking about a productivity ninja here. She doesn't carry swords or throw stars; instead, her weapons of choice are well-honed workflows and time-management tricks – a suite of organizational tools that she can skillfully apply as needed.

    Here’s another quality a productivity ninja possesses: she’s unconventional. She’s not afraid to take risks or challenge the status quo if it means getting things done quicker and better. She slashes through bureaucracy to take the shortest route between to-do and done.

    A ninja is also agile – she handles her workload efficiently and is a pro at knowing when to pivot between tasks. She’s always prepared to drop everything to respond to an opportunity or extinguish a threat. 

    Finally, despite all those amazing qualities, here’s one thing a ninja is not: perfect. Sometimes, she’ll miss a deadline or forget a task or spend the morning scrolling through Instagram instead of tackling her to-do list. And that’s OK, because it isn’t perfection she’s aiming for – it’s consistency.

    Are you feeling ready to unleash your inner productivity ninja? The next blinks will tell you how.

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    What is How to Be a Productivity Ninja about?

    How to Be a Productivity Ninja (2014) transforms old-school time-management techniques and productivity advice into a twenty-first century handbook on how to work smarter – not harder. Adapted to the realities of contemporary work and life, it’s filled with practical guidance and exercises for boosting productivity.

    Who should read How to Be a Productivity Ninja?

    • Chronic procrastinators who’d like to get more done
    • Habitual multitaskers who can’t seem to follow through
    • Anyone who’s scared of their overflowing inbox or novel-length to-do list

    About the Author

    Graham Allcott is one of the UK’s best-known productivity experts. In addition to authoring books like How to be a Productivity Ninja and How to be a Study Ninja, Allcott is founder of the productivity consultancy Think Productive and host of the podcast Beyond Busy

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