The 80/20 rule is a concept I’ve read a lot in business and productivity blogs and books. Every business and productivity expert swear by it. The first time a read about it I thought “why didn’t I hear this before?” this is the kind of knowledge that you won’t get at school. As soon as I read it I started implementing it in my daily life. I believe every single person should know about it and apply it not only in business but every single aspect of their lives.
What is the 80/20 rule?
According to Wikipedia,
“The Pareto principle (also known as the 80–20 rule, the law of the vital few, and the principle of factor sparsity states that, for many events, roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes”
80/20 is just a general rule, the numbers can change a little. It can be 70/30, 85/15 or 90/10, you get the idea.
What this means is that you should focus on doing the 20% of what really matters and this 20% of your actions will give you 80% of the results. Now that’s what I call working smart!
Remember that you don’t have to do 100% of the work and try to be perfect. Just do the most important tasks each day and you’ll get great results. I won’t promise you that it will give you perfect results but they’ll be excellent with little effort. I don’t know about you, but I rather get excellent results by doing 20% of the work than doing 100% to try to get it perfect (We all know that it will never be perfect) .
You can apply this rule to most aspects of your life. Here are some examples:
What 20% of your actions make up 80% of your monthly savings?
It can be paying your bills on time so you don’t have to pay late fees or paying your credit card on full each month and avoid paying any interest. The other 80% actions might not even worth your time. For example unplugging your devices when you’re not using them might not save you a lot of money and will require a bunch of time to do it.
here we are talking about family, friends and relatives. What 20 % of your relationships bring you joy and make your life better? What 80% brings negativity and stress to your life. You might consider some changes in the way you interact with them or even get away from this kind of people.
What 20% of your investments help you earn 80% of your money? You might want to pay more attention to those and if possible make them grow.
Time and Goals
What activities that you do everyday help you accomplish your goals?
How much time do you spend working towards them?
Are you using your time wisely?
How much time do you spend procrastinating?
Do yo spend most of your time surfing the web or watching TV instead of working out or working in a project?
What 20% of the clothes you own fit you? what clothes do you love? What 20% do you actually use? do you really need the 80% that you will never use? Same goes for everything else around the house and at work. You can even apply it to mind clutter. What 20% of your thoughts are positive? Which ones are really worth thinking about? Do you have to worry about the 80% you can’t do anything about?
These are only some examples of how you can use the 80/20 rule to simplify your life and remove some clutter and stress.
Everyday I like to think of it as doing 20% of what I love that gives me 80% of my happiness and doing 20% of the activities that will help me accomplish 80% of my goals.
What 20% of what you do really makes you happy or helps you accomplish your goals?