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The Front Nine: How to Start the Year You Want Anytime You Want Paperback – March 5, 2013


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 68 pages
  • Publisher: Diversion Books; 1 edition (March 5, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1626810079
  • ISBN-13: 978-1626810075
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.2 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,853,763 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Mike Vardy is a husband, father, writer, speaker, and productivity strategist (or "productivityist" for short).

In addition to being the founder and chief writer at Productivityist, he continues to contribute guest articles to several blogs on the topic of productivity, time, and task management, including 99u, The Huffington Post, SUCCESS Magazine, and Lifehacker. He has served as Managing Editor at Lifehack, and as an editor at The Next Web and WorkAwesome.

Along with his written work, he has given talks on productivity and technology, including a TEDx talk, a panel at SXSW, and facilitating a three-day workshop for creativeLIVE. He currently hosts The Productivityist Podcast, a weekly show that examines personal productivity and tactical approaches to work and life.

Mike lives in Victoria, BC, Canada with his amazing wife, daughter, and son.

Customer Reviews

Pick this book up and absorb it cover to cover.
Cody W
I'm not a golfer, but but the metaphor that Vardy carries through the book works: from teeing off to finishing on the green and even how to deal with hazards.
Cheryl DeWolfe
It helps that the pace of the book is very fast, and Mike has written it very well, really enjoyable and useful.
Arin Basu

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By C. McCaa on November 14, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
not much new here. was like wading through miles of unnecessary metaphor for a kernel here and there. was worth the couple of bucks for a couple of useful ideas, but maybe not worth the time to skim through all the fluff.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By D. Ursillo Jr. on December 30, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
Mike Vardy's THE FRONT NINE is an intelligent productivity book that bridges a beloved sports analogy with the ever-popular subjects of personal productivity and task- and skill-management. Vardy opens THE FRONT NINE by laying out a three-step process (each step represents one of the three sections of the book) that guides the reader to start executing upon resolutions, ideas, projects and goals through simple tactics and intelligent methods that guide you to seeing those goals through to completion.

What distinguishes THE FRONT NINE from other productivity books I've read is Vardy's approach to teaching productivity through foundational concepts of personal development and human psychology -- things like the practical, simple but oft-overlooked strategies behind confident decision-making and understanding personal priorities before pursuing meaningful goals.

True to form, THE FRONT NINE wishes to help its readers create meaningful work through productivity, and so the book continually speaks to the reader in meaningful ways. Throughout THE FRONT NINE, Vardy's voice and tone are refreshingly friendly and engaging, and I felt the author speaking to the reader like a friend instead of a productivity line. To me, that matters a lot. And if you enjoy reading great content that helps you create more meaningful work (in spite of our busy and noisy world), THE FRONT NINE will keep you "teeing up" hole after hole, no matter the weather.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase

The Front Nine takes the metaphor of a game of golf and uses it to illustrate approaching and launching projects (or starting a year) in your business. He uses this metaphor to show you how you don't just have to start a 'new year' on January 1st like everyone else, you can start a new year or new project any time you want.</p>

Mike Vardy (of <a href="http://productivityist.com/">Productivityist</a>) splits up a project or a year's progress in to 3 stages mapped to a game of golf.</p>

<ol>
<li>The Drive</li>
<li>The Fairway</li>
<li>The Green</li>
</ol>

<h3>The Drive</h3>

The Drive is where you start your project. It's where you survey the landscape and the possible obstacles to make sure that your first shot puts you in the best position as you start out and head to The Fairway.</p>

<h3>The Fairway</h3>

This is where people spend most of their time, traveling towards the goal with obstacles (like rough grass, sand traps, water...) all around them.</p>

The goal is to make progress, avoid the obstacles and continue to make "strategic, efficient, and effective progress as you go."</p>

<h3>The Green</h3>

This is that last 10% of your year or project, which seems to take just as much time as the first 90% of the year/project.</p>

Not only do you need to finish strong here, but you need to stop and reflect on the strategies that got you here. What went well, what didn't? What will you do different next time?</p>

<h3>Recommendation?
Read more ›
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I own this book. I like Mike. I benefit from Mike's advice.

HOWEVER, the following has no connection to reality or golf, and distracts greatly from the central message of this book (that you can start your "year" -- make your changes -- any time you want. Oh, and holes 4-13 are TEN holes!):

"So, if you're going to play some golf with your friends and you are late, showing up by the time they reach the 4th hole, then your front nine are holes four through thirteen. And when the final scores are tallied, your scores will be based on the same amount of holes, but not on the exact same holes."

Vardy, Mike (2014-01-15). The Front Nine: How to Start the Year You Want Anytime You Want (p. 6). Diversion Books. Kindle Edition.
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Productivityist Mike Vardy put together this guide to help those who might be stalling, not sure where to start in order to reach a goal, change a habit, or complete a project. While Vardy often writes about productivity -- getting the most out of your time -- The Front Nine is more about making the time you have work for you.

I'm not a golfer, but but the metaphor that Vardy carries through the book works: from teeing off to finishing on the green and even how to deal with hazards. While some of the advice seems almost obvious, there is enough insight in this short book to generate some aHa moments, especially for those facing a bigger project that they are having trouble breaking down into its components.

While many people start fresh or start something new in January, Vardy argues you can get your start any time you want with just a little planning, practice, and follow through.
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