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Not Today summary

Erica Schultz and Mike Schultz

The 9 Habits of Extreme Productivity

4.3 (360 ratings)
24 mins
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    Not Today
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    Their son’s heart defect turned Mike and Erica’s lives upside down.

    These blinks are about how to be more productive at work. But they’re not just about that, because the authors, Mike and Erica Schultz, learned many of these lessons in pretty much the hardest way possible.

    In the years before they had kids, Mike and Erica lived a gloriously busy life together. They ran a successful small business that was just starting to turn into something big. They renovated a house by beautiful Lake Boon in Massachusetts. And they had active social lives too.

    The one extra thing they wanted was a family, so they were ecstatic when Erica got pregnant.

    During an ultrasound, however, the concerned expressions on the medical staff’s faces told them that something was wrong. The problem, it turned out, was in their child’s heart. In that moment, everything changed.

    The key message here is: Their son’s heart defect turned Mike and Erica’s lives upside down.

    Ari, Mike and Erica’s son, had hypoplastic left heart syndrome, which affected his heart’s ability to circulate blood. Even after several operations during pregnancy, Ari was born in a critical state and had two major operations in his first seven months.

    Despite his heart problems, the precocious young Ari loved sports. He wowed people with his basketball moves, and was playing golf at the age of two. But in his five and a half years of life, he spent more than a full year in hospital care.

    And of course, so did his parents.

    Taking a break from work would have meant Mike and Erica’s whole business failing. And that would have meant losing their health insurance.

    Imagine not just running a business from a hospital waiting room, but doing so while your infant son is fighting for his life down the hall. How could you get any work done at all?

    Yet during this period, Mike and Erica rebuilt their business, expanded into nine international offices, and wrote four books, including a best seller. And they had two more children, Lexi and Eli.

    They also did some research into productivity. Surveying thousands of professionals, they identified a group they called the Extremely Productive, or the XP, who had notably different work habits from everyone else, which allowed them to get far more done.

    These habits aren’t things you have to be born with. They’re simple little hacks that anyone can learn. That’s how the authors managed to reshape their business during those dark days in the hospital with Ari.

    And it’s how you can increase your own productivity too – as you’re about to find out.

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    What is Not Today about?

    Not Today (2021) explains how you can become extremely productive through nine simple steps. The authors learned many of these lessons while running their business at the same time as caring for their gravely ill young son.

    Who should read Not Today?

    • Entrepreneurs and ambitious workers who want to up their productivity
    • Business leaders with an eye on efficiency
    • Lovers of inspiring personal stories

    About the Author

    Erica and Mike Schulz are the leaders of RAIN Group, one of the world’s leading sales training companies. They’ve worked with top organizations including Toyota and Harvard Business School. Mike has also written several other books including Rainmaking Conversations. They are also the parents of Ari, their son, which they count as their greatest achievement.

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