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Design Your Day: Be More Productive, Set Better Goals, and Live Life On Purpose Paperback – January 5, 2016
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"As a busy mom who also works part-time outside the home, I am always on the lookout for any tips that will help with productivity, time management, and focus. As with most books in the genre, I began Claire Diaz-Ortiz’s Design Your Day simultaneously excited for a new “a-aha!” moment, and skeptical that the book would only contain the same old re-hashed ideas. I’m happy to say that the book delivers new concepts, and reinforces why brainstorming and other efforts that can seem like time sinks are necessary.
Diaz-Ortiz spends much time addressing goal setting (including realistic and relevant goals), and an action plan for determining where one should focus his/her efforts based on priorities, core competencies and enjoyment. The book also contains many helpful time tracking, goal setting, and other productivity resources.
Thank to you NetGalley and Moody Publishers for a galley of this book in exchange for an honest review."
Reviewed by Jennifer Johnson, Net Galley, Oct 20, 2015
"Rating: 5/5 stars
Before I start, two things about me:
One, I might be the biggest procrastinator in the entire universe.
Two, I am not the biggest fan of self-help books, however, I have found them necessary in the last few months.
While I am still struggling to reach the seventh chapter of Antoni De Melo’s Call To Love (which might be due to a poor translation) and yes, I am still putting Joe Barry’s Panic Away Program to the test, I successfully tackled Design Your Day within a day (pun not intended, if it is, in fact, a pun).
ATTENTION UNIVERSE: Mrs. Diaz-Ortiz deserves all the awards for this book.
When I stumbled onto this book on NetGalley, I KNEW that I had to read it. I felt like it was written for me.
Now, let me tell you a couple of reasons why I needed Design Your Day in my life, and therefore you need it in yours.
First off, the writing. Mrs. Diaz-Ortiz has a one of a kind gift. She has the ability to explain complicated mechanisms with ease and wit which not only makes a usually-slow-moving-genre book interesting, it makes you excited to read the rest. It inspires you to try what it suggests.
I started this book at six in the morning (thanks to my cat) with the intention to power through it, wondering if a rainy Saturday morning is the best timing for a self-help book. But I ended up finishing it in four hours AND I already had my WORD OF THE YEAR, as well as a brainstorming session. That’s how inspiring it is.
Second off, the theories and techniques Mrs. Diaz-Ortiz suggests. While it all sounds complicated and hard to achieve after reading the introduction, once you actually start reading, you’ll see how simple it all is. Some day-to-day things we do can make a difference in your productivity.
Third off, IT WORKS."
Reviewed by Hristina Petrov, NetGalley, Dec 27, 2015
"I received this book just as I was about to start my annual process of setting goals for next year. I have been going about that task somewhat haphazardly in the past, but this book offers some very pragmatic ideas for setting those goals and breaking them down into achievable portions. This is instrumental in actually accomplishing those goals. In addition, the author offered some great insight into organizing a workday in order to be more productive and waste less time. Very practical guide for anyone with busy days or who might want to take a good look at what they want to accomplish."
Reviewed by Kathryn Strain, NetGalley, Nov 19, 2015
From the Back Cover
"There are a lot of books about goal setting. This one is special. It helps you set meaningful goals and gives you simple and effective strategies for achieving them."¿—Scott Warner, CEO, Gigg
When it comes to productivity, hard work is half the battle. The first half—the crucial half—is planning well.
Enter the DO LESS method, a simple way to achieve your goals more often, in less time, and with greater peace of mind. Learn how to:
- Decide the right goals for you
- Create workable strategies for reaching them
- Harness time for maximum efficiency
Whether you want to finish a project, lose weight, or read 200 books a year, Design Your Day is an all-in-one guide to spending time with purpose. Use Claire’s tips and tools, and you’ll be amazed at what you can do in a day, let alone a lifetime.
Top Customer Reviews
Her strategy is her Do Less Method. It is a productivity and goal setting model designed to get more done in less time and succeed more often. The book is in two parts. The first part concentrates on deciding what is important and what we really want. The second part is about organizing. It includes productivity strategies to reach SMART goals and includes the four steps of limit, edit, streamline, stop. (Decide, Organize, Limit, Edit, Streamline, Stop – DO LESS)
I liked her idea of brainstorming and free writing to get as many ideas as possible. We are to welcome unusual ones and withhold criticism. Then ideas are combined and improved upon, then structured into SMART goals. She suggests creating goals for the major areas of life: God/Faith, Family, Health, Personal, Work, Money.
But having goals is only half the process. She suggests we limit ourselves to work our best 20 percent. She helps us understand how to identify those activities. Next she suggests we edit the time we spend at work, like establishing specific work hours, and taking time off. She suggests we schedule our day and gives several strategies for doing our best work at our most productive times. She also helps us know when to stop working, that is, when to stop trying.
I really appreciated this book. It is a good book for anyone wanting to get more done in less time. The idea is not to work more but to work smarter. This might take some experimentation to find our best times and places for work. But the reward is getting more done with time left over.
This is a good introductory level book on living life more effectively.Read more ›
1. Suggestions for brainstorming, freewriting (writing down whatever comes to mind), and listing goals.
2. Make sure your goals are relevant to the season of life you're currently in - a very good point, looking back, I see how my goals and priorities have changed over the years.
3. Suggestions for implementing the 80/20 principle into your life.
4. Suggestions for working fewer hours and actually being more productive - I really liked her comment that some employees waste a lot of time at work by putting in face time while not being productive. To that I say "amen" - work fewer hours, be more productive, and have more time for other things (family, friends, hobbies, serving in the community, etc.).
5. Morning people usually get more done and have a better life.
6. Doing the hardest things first helps you avoid decision fatigue (being drained by the energy required to make the countless decisions we make every day).
7. Depending on the situation, sometimes you have to push through a task and sometimes you need to take a break.
8. The importance of taking mini breaks, a weekend off, or a full vacation away from work - have done this and noticed the positive results.
While for some readers there may not be anything new or earth-shattering, it helps to be reminded of basic principles of productivity. Will use this as a future reference. Good read.
The book is written into two parts: Decide and Organize (Less is More). The Decide part is all about determining the what to focus on. Interestingly, Claire uses the "Word of the Year" as a critical platform for determining what to do. If something doesn't marry within the context of the "Word" she won't do it. The rest of this section involves developing goals (i.e. SMART ones), keeping them top of mind and creating the necessary strategies to achieve the goals.
The "Organize" section provides lots of handy tips on setting yourself up each day to move forward on your goals. Here she reviews the power of a morning routine with her PRESENT acronym which I've always appreciated and have adopted with some modifications; the 80/20 rule, i.e. we achieve 80% of our best in 20% of our time; and, various other common productivity enhancers around email arrangement, prioritising your "work" time and meeting management.
Yes, much of what Claire covers is not new and many other productivity experts will have also covered them. However, Claire's engaging and caring manner makes this practical book easy to navigate and to implement.
Claire Diaz-Ortiz has made quite a name for herself in the online world. Wired magazine called her, “The Woman Who Got the Pope on Twitter.” Forbes magazine called her a, “Force for Good.” She is also the author of several books (which I will link below). She is the cofounder of Hope Runs, which is an organization that operates AIDS orphanages in Kenya. As you can see, Claire, is super busy! If anyone can give good advice about productivity it’s her. She is also a Christian and her book reflects that, which I really enjoyed.
Design Your Day is broken up into two different parts: Decide and Organize (Less is More). The first part of the book is all about deciding what exactly you should be working on. You learn how to set goals, pick a “word” of the year, and create strategies to reach your goals. The second part is jammed pack full of tips in order to increase your productivity and get rid of anything that doesn’t move you towards your goals.
I really enjoyed this book and it gave me lots of new tips to increase my productivity. However, nothing in this book was rocket science and several of the ideas I’ve heard many times before. The chapters also weren’t organized in the best way. It sort of jumped all over the place and the author would go off on random tangents sometimes.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is not just another personal development book. This is a book with great insight, tips and resources to really, “Design Your Day” and live on purpose. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Milesforacure
Why I Choose this Book:
The tag line is Be more productive, set better goals, and live life on purpose. Who doesn't want that? Of course I wanted to read it. Read more
A good quick read on productivity. I would agree with some of the other reviews that people who are productivity junkies would probably pass on this, but for everyone else it is a... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Hope Halperin
Decide, Organize, Limit, Edit, Streamline, Stop – DO LESS
The acronym above plays a major role in this excellent addition to anyone's self-help shelf. Read more
As a therapist, I agree with the goal setting strategies in this book. It is simple, short, and user friendly. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Kristi