Hey, what's going on everyone? It's Sam Ovens here. Today I want to talk to you about decision fatigue and why the most successful people in the world wear the exact same clothes every single day. I'm sure you've seen like Mark Zuckerberg with his hoodie and that, and he wears the same thing like all the time.
There's a lot of entrepreneurs that wear the exact same thing every day. Steve Jobs did it too. He had the turtleneck with the sneakers and jeans and the glasses, and they keep their hair exactly the same too. They quite often will keep their facial hair exactly the same too.
What you'll begin to notice when you start really looking into the psychology of a lot of these successful billionaires and people who are really leading the world today is that they really watch what things they spend their decision making energy on.
One thing that I've noticed that a lot of people don't realize is that we only have so much decision making energy and so much willpower each day. What happens is most people blow all of their decision making power and all of their willpower on small, trivial, useless things, which means that by the time they get to the major projects and the major decisions they're too tired and they don't have the mental capacity to cope with it, so they just think I'll just think about it later. I'll deal with it later. I'll just sweep it under the rug and deal with it later. Right?
Really what they don't understand is we only have so much of this thing each day, and it doesn't matter whether you're deciding like whether to run an ad or not, or whether to start a business or not, or whether to invest $100,000 in this particular thing or not. Like that decision there takes the same amount of energy as it does to make a decision about what you're going to have for lunch and a decision about like what clothes you're going to wear for the day.
So when I was first getting started in business, I cared a lot about what clothes I wore because I thought if I'm going to be a successful businessman I've got to have a blazer and a shirt and fancy shoes and things like that, so I did. But it was a lot of effort.
Then I also ... I cared about a lot of things and I noticed that a lot of my energy was getting zapped from that. So I tried just wearing the same clothes every day. I thought why don't I set a uniform standard for clothes so that I don't have to think about it, it's just automatic? So that's what I've done for like the past year or two years. I've really just started to wear the exact same thing every day.
What I did is I found my favorite tee-shirt, which is this one here. It's just a simple tee-shirt, and the colors I like them in is black, gray, white and blue. So I have about three in each color, exact same size, same brand. Simple. So when I wake up in the morning all I have to do is just put on one of those tee-shirts. Done.
Then when it comes to underwear, I just have the exact same things. I've got like 20 pairs of black Calvin Klein underwear, so I don't think ... It's just the same. And then the same with socks. They're all the same. Then with shorts, I only have ... I only wear the same shorts. You can see them there. But I found my favorite ones that I liked and then I just got five pairs of them in different colors. So then when it comes to putting those on, I just grab one of those.
Then when it comes to shoes, I just put on the exact same ones, which is just white [inaudible 00:03:28], because they're comfortable and they're not too expensive and I like them. So now I just wear the same thing every day, so I don't have to think about it.
I can tell you that there's a huge amount of energy that you save from just doing that. A lot of people, I see them, they work in corporate jobs and they care so much about how they look, that they put all of this decision making work into what clothes they're going to wear, and then what happens because of that is that their work takes the toll. I mean you've got to decide what's more important, the work you're doing and the results you get, or how you look when you're working.
If you choose the looking one, I mean it's pretty stupid. That's up to you. But that's why a lot of successful people do this. They focus the energy on the things that are going to deliver the biggest results. Mark Zuckerberg, he's trying to build ... Well, he isn't even trying. I mean he has built the world's largest social network ever. It's one of the most successful companies in the world. He doesn't care about how he looks. He only cares about the success of the business, so he just ... He makes that decision simple.
So when it comes to decision making and decision making fatigue, it's so important to really simplify things and set uniform standards so that you can ... You really have a lot more decision making power for later on in the day when you're actually making decisions that count. When you do this, you'll be able to grow your business ... You'll have a lot more energy to grow your business and you'll also have a lot more energy to spend in more fulfilling ways than like what clothes you're going to wear or where you're going to go for lunch or things like this.
In this video I want to tell you about four things that you can use right now to really save some decision making power for yourself. The first one I want to cover is wear the same clothes every day. The first thing most people say about this is yeah, but they'll smell or whatever. So what you do is you just buy multiple things of the same thing.
With socks, just buy like five pairs. With underwear just buy like five pairs. Shorts, buy five pairs, and then jeans, buy two pairs. Then if they're tee-shirts, just buy five of them. That way you're wearing different things but they're all the same. Done. Fixed. Honestly, that'll save you a ton of time. Just find your most favorite things and just wear those, because why do you want to wear things that aren't your favorite anyway? So that's a huge thing that all entrepreneurs should do.
The second thing I want to tell you about is plan tomorrow today. This is huge. This will save you a lot more than wearing the same clothes. Wearing the same clothes is a good habit, because it really is easy to implement. I mean it's pretty ... It's harder not to implement it than it is to implement it, so that's why I started with that one, number one.
But planning tomorrow today is another trait of many billionaires, or most billionaires, and most really successful people. The reason why we plan tomorrow today is so that when we wake up tomorrow we don't have to think about what we should do today. Most entrepreneurs, they wake up in the morning and their first thought is what should I do today? Like what's important, and then what's trending, what's a good opportunity, or what's hot, or what are my friends doing?
They probably spend most of their day thinking what should I do and what's the best thing for me to do instead of actually doing. And thinking about doing isn't doing. The only thing that makes the boat go faster is doing. So these people are spending most of their time doing nothing. They're basically trading their life for nothing, which is a pretty bad deal.
This is not what you want to do. But when you plan tomorrow today, it totally changes everything, because at the end of your day you know exactly what you need to do, because they're the things that you really want to do like that night, but you don't want to do them that night because you need to go to sleep. So you know exactly what you need to do tomorrow at the end of today, and that's the best time to write that list down and plan it out.
What I do is I plan ... I spend quite a lot of time planning, but it's batches. So what I do is I use this thing here called my wall map calendar, and this thing honestly changes the game. If you haven't downloaded this ... Like I gave it away for free a couple of weeks ago on my blog, and if you haven't got this yet and if you haven't seen what the wall map calendar is, then beneath this video I'm going to include a link where you can go and get this wall map calendar for free.
But what it basically allows you to do is it allows you to plan your years, your quarters, your months and then your weeks and then your days from like the big picture all the way into the forensic detail. It really allows you to plan everything out in advance and schedule everything out in advance.
While that plans everything down to like months, weeks, days, things like that, at the end of each day I'll plan what tomorrow is going to be. I can never know what tomorrow is going to be exactly until the night before because things change all the time, right? You can't schedule out the next 30 days today and have it all run perfectly, because so may things are going to come up that you couldn't possibly plan for. Even the world's best supercomputer couldn't even detect those things.
So you don't like ... I really plan broadly, like things move around a bit at the yearly level, quarterly level, monthly level, even weekly level, but then the night before I get laser specific. What I typically do is ... You can see here, is I will plot things. I'll plot exactly what I'm going to do in like 30 minute increments. So from the moment I wake up in the morning till the moment I go to sleep at night I will plan every 30 minute interval, even if it's having lunch, going to the gym, meditating. Even if it's taking a little break. I even include little time buffers in there just to give me space in case different things pop up and emerge that I haven't planned for.
When I switched to doing this it was a game changer. I used to do what most people do, which is floating, which is just going with the flow, waking up each day and kind of just taking things as they come, floating around. That's quite a nice way to be, like it's quite relaxing and it's kind of fun and entertaining, but the truth of it is is that you don't get anything done and you don't really get what you want.
So to really get what you want in business and in life, you have to be very forceful with your will, like you have to be deliberate and you have to premeditate what you want and you have to come up with plans and really architect exactly what you're going to do, and then do it, regardless of how you feel on the day or regardless of what things pop up. You have to block out the noise, put on blinders, and just drive.
Sometimes you don't have the motivation or sometimes you're not feeling into it, but one tip I can give you is motivation comes and goes, and it's all right if some days you're not feeling motivated, but never, ever lose your discipline. That's so important. So even if I'm not feeling like it one day, I just have to drive through it. I've got to get it done. All right? So that's one huge tip I can give you right away. Go and check out that wall map if you haven't already.
If you're already using the wall map you'll know how awesome this thing is, and you've got to plan tomorrow today. It will change your life. You'll probably do the same amount ... You'll get more work done in one day than you probably get done right now in a week, and that's just by making one change, so do it.
So the first one we had was wear the same clothes every day. The second one was to plan tomorrow today. Now the third one is to lift big rocks first. So what does this mean? It means work on the big gnarly things first thing in the morning, because as the day goes on we actually lose our ability to make good decisions. They've even done scientific studies on this and you can Google it.
But they even took like judges and juries and things like this and they tracked their ability to make decisions, and they do this too with like fighter pilots and stuff. They will track their decisions over a period of time and they'll watch them get worse and worse and worse with time. It's so real, this thing, that the only people in the Army that have to have mandatory eight hours sleep every night are fighter pilots, because those guys have to make split second decisions. They have to be very good decision makers, and the planes they're flying are worth a lot of money. So if they don't get enough sleep and if they're not rested well enough, then they're not able to make good decisions.
Even commercial pilots, they're only allowed to fly so many miles per month, so that's why a lot of long-distance pilots actually spend more time off not flying than flying, because there's only so many hours and so many miles they're allowed to fly and then their decision making is severely impaired and they're actually a hazard to people.
So this thing is real. The more decisions you make, the worse they get. That's why you don't want to spend this limited and very powerful energy on what clothes you want to wear and that's why you want to plan tomorrow today, so you're not thinking what should I do. You just have to do it. And that's also why you want to lift big rocks first.
I say big rocks first because it's just something that'll stick in your mind. You'll remember it. Like plan tomorrow today, it sounds like pretty ... It kind of rhymes. Then lift big rocks first, right? So that means the big gnarly thing that you have to get done tomorrow, that's happening first thing.
What I do is I wake up at 6:50 in the morning, then I'm working out at the gym from 7:00 till 8:00. Why I do the gym first is otherwise all day I'm just going to be thinking about the gym and how I don't want to go to the gym, so it's best for me just to get it done and then I feel fine, so that's why I do that one first.
If you plan to go to the gym too, I mean the morning is a great time to do it, and then you get something hard done first and then you feel like you can accomplish anything if you've gone and smashed out a workout first.
Then what I'll do is have a shower, breakfast, and then I'll do meditation for 20 minutes. Then I get into my work at about 9:00 a.m. Now what I start on at 9:00, that's where I lift my big rocks. That's where I'll get the most important things done first. From 9:00 all the way through till like 1:00, 2:00, 3:00, those are very, very important hours. You should never be checking your emails on that stretch of time, from 9:00 a.m. till like 3:00 p.m.
You shouldn't be checking your emails. You shouldn't be checking social media. You shouldn't be checking your phone. You shouldn't be taking calls with people. You shouldn't be doing anything. You should be isolating yourself, closing off every way for anyone to get in touch with you, and lifting those big rocks, making progress, because most people spend all their time in the morning just catching up and talking to people.
Then it comes to the afternoon and they're getting their email inbox down. They're responded to these different messages. They've caught up-to-date with the news, which is totally useless, and then they're like oh, I've finally got everything done. Now time to put some work in on this important project. Then they're like yeah, no, not much left in me. Maybe I'll do it tomorrow. Then tomorrow becomes today, [inaudible 00:15:34] and repeat.
Then what ends up happening, the person dies and never achieves anything, all right? So don't do that crap in the morning. Lift big rocks first and save the things that are like replying to people, checking on the news ... Save that till the end of the day, because that's when you've got the worse attention span and that's when you've got the absolute worse decision making abilities.
You don't need very good decision making abilities to check your email, reply to an email, and check your Facebook and Instagram and things. You don't even really need a brain to do that stuff, basically you don't. So what you do is do that at the end, not at the start. For God sake, whatever you do, don't do it at the start unless you want to be poor and fail, right? So that is the third point.
Now the fourth point ... And this one is to eliminate variables. So when it comes to making decisions the things that suck power in decision making are variables, different possible combinations of variables, different possible scenarios. If a decision is really well defined, like if the problem is well defined and articulated and it's just like an A or B decision, it's very easy to do, very easy. But when there's tons of variables, now it gets harder and every variable kind of acts as another decision, because it makes he thing more complicated and it sucks more brain power.
So the key is to eliminate variables everywhere you possibly can, and one way to eliminate variables is to wear the same clothes every day. That's a big one. Another thing to eliminate variables is to plan tomorrow today, use the wall map calendar and all of that. Another thing you can do though which is huge is to batch all of your meals for the whole week like on Sunday.
What I do is I have a chef, so like when you go to eat food each day it's a lot of decision making power. You're like oh, what am I going to have for breakfast? I've got to look in these different cupboards, got to find these different utensils, got to clean this stuff, put it back. All of those are decisions, decisions that could be put into improving your business, hiring people, doing all sorts of things. But no, they're spent on mundane tasks.
So what I recommend most people do is they should batch it. Go and buy your groceries on the weekend, and you shouldn't even be going to buy groceries yourself. That's dumb. It's 2018. You should be buying them on the internet. If anyone is walking around a mall they're intelligence is questionable. Buy it on the internet. Get it delivered. That saves you a bunch of time and decision making fatigue. Trying to just figure out what aisle something is in, decisions. Don't do that. Just buy it online, get it delivered, done.
Then I recommend cooking all of your meals, batching it for the whole week, on a Sunday, because that way you get all of those decisions done for the week right there in that one spot. Batching is an extremely powerful technique for saving decision making power and also being more productive.
With production lines and with what Henry Ford found back when he started Ford Motor Company, built the Model T and all of that, is that if he had one man doing three different things ... So let's say he had to grind out out of steel like a particular part for an engine, and then he had to fit that part into the engine, and then he had to balance that part into the engine, all right, it's only three things. If that man was just responsible for one and then another man was responsible for the next thing and then another man responsible for the next thing, they were actually way faster than if one man is doing it all himself.
That's because there has to be decisions in between each step, the right time to do that one, the right time to do that one. But when you do the same thing, the motion and everything that you do in that task becomes automatic and it just flows and you're so much more productive.
So that's why I like when you wear the same clothes every day it just all happens automatically. You're pretty much not even thinking. The same thing happens when you batch your food, because you get all of your shopping done on that Sunday, you prepare it all on that Sunday, you wash all the dishes, you do all the prep on that Sunday, put it all into containers in the fridge or freeze it, and then when you need to eat each meal just pull it out, microwave it, eat. Done.
What I recommend doing is if you're making more than 10 grand a month hire a chef. It'll honestly be the best use of your money ever. It's a huge ROI activity to hire a chef, and if you're making more than 10 grand a month and making your own meals and doing all of that, that's stupid behavior. Don't do it.
Now what I do is my chef will ... My trainer will actually order the meals for the week and then get the things delivered. The groceries, they get put in the fridge. Then my chef prepares everything. Then when it's time to eat, I just walk over there, eat, come back. Done. Right? All of those decisions that other people have to make, I don't have to make those and my decisions can go into things that are really going to make the boat go faster, not just maintenance tasks.
But there's a lot of other ways you can remove variables. Some other examples I use is I only do ... The only currency we have for our company, consulting.com, is US dollars. By having one uniform currency, you remove variables. I see some businesses deal in lots of different currencies. It's crazy.
Our company is ... We've got offices in Dublin and in New York and I'm from New Zealand, right? Those are all these different currencies. But since day one we've only dealt in US dollars. It doesn't matter where we're marketing or selling to, even our company, all of our books are done in USD and all of our accounts are settled in USD. All of our pricing is in USD. That just takes a lot of complexity out of it, less variables. That's a big simplifying thing you can do. Only deal in one currency.
Another thing you can do is to only deal in one time zone. I live in New York, so the only time zone we ever talk about is eastern time. So if I tell someone something is happening at a particular time, it's always eastern. If we're holding a webinar at a time, it's eastern. If I'm telling my customers when something is happening, it's eastern. Everything is done on eastern time and in US dollars. By doing that, it simplifies everything a lot.
Also when it comes to communications, eliminate variables. A lot of people have [inaudible 00:22:13], then Facebook, then Snapchat, and then Instagram, and then I don't even know what these other things are, but people have so many different things. Then they've got like five email accounts, like Hotmail, Gmail and all of this crap, and then they use all of these other sites too and they've got all of these different messaging platforms. That is absolute madness and that's a way to not get things done, and it's a surefire way to achieve nothing and be poor.
What you want to do is come up with uniform standard. With me it's Slack. So my team knows if they want to contact me it's through Slack. No one in our company uses email, Facebook, text or anything. Everything is done in Slack. But it goes further than that. If my wife just wants to message me, as mention we use Slack as well. If my family wants to message me, I've created a family chat room in there too, so that all happens in there as well.
By doing that, it means that I don't have to check all of these other things because I know the people that need to reach me know to do it through that one thing. It actually ... You might think that's mean to force everyone to just use one thing. It's actually better. It means that I can be a better leader, a better family member. It means I can be a better everything because I'm more efficient at communicating with people because I've eliminated variables and simplified things.
So simplify your life. Like I also notice a lot of people have multiple bank accounts. That's some dumb stuff to do, because again variables. Then within those ... Like most people will probably have like four different bank accounts with four different banks, and within those four banks they'll have like three accounts, like a checking and a savings and this other savings thing, but they'll have no money in it. Then they'll often have all of these different credit cards. Then they'll have like three PayPal accounts. What on Earth?
Our company has one bank account and then it's with one bank, and within that there's just one account. Then when it comes to our cards, we only have one card. Then we've got our company in Ireland, that's got one bank, one card, simple, and it's only in one currency even between the different countries.
Then myself personally, I've only got one account, one card. I don't have a credit card or anything. I just use debit, because it makes it simpler. It means all of my statements are just what the bank says it is. I don't have to look at my credit card statements and then my bank statements. We don't have any credit and we don't have any credit cards, so we have zero dollars in credit and zero credit cards. We just use debit cards, and we have very simple accounts.
That makes our life really easy. It means it's easy to look at our books and what's in our bank account, we know that's how much money we have, which simplifies everything. We don't have to jump through all these hoops and we're not spending money that doesn't really exist and all of this crap.
So that's enabled me to build my company now to the point where we're making more than $20 million a year. Our run rate is actually to make a lot more than that this year. We've been able to do all of that without raising any capital, without any external investment funding or anything, and without a single dollar in debt. I have zero debt, not even a credit card. All of the stuff that we do is in cash, which is pretty much unheard of in these days, but by simplifying, I make things a lot easier for myself. So if you want to really be productive and get things done and make the boat go faster, remove as many variables as you can.
One thing I see a lot of people do is they're traveling all the time. If you want to travel, go and travel. But if your main priority is trying to start a business, then you're really hurting yourself by traveling all the time. When you travel the time zone changes, the culture changes, the environment around you changes. So if you need to go to the gym, if you need to go get food, coffee and different things, it changes.
The layout of the room you're sleeping in changes. The rooms of that hotel or whatever changes. The time zone changes. Your body clock now has to adjust to this new thing. The culture changes. Everything changes. There is so many variables coming into your life all the time and they're constantly changing. That means that most of your decision making power is going on to changing variables in your environment instead of focusing on the variables within your business.
So if you want to ... If your main priority is traveling, then travel, because that's what you're trying to do, right? But if your main priority is actually business and you kind of like traveling, honestly do yourself a favor and stop traveling, because it's the absolute worst thing you can do if you want to be productive. It's the absolute worst, plus you got to go through airports and all of that crap. Horrible.
So what I do is I only travel like every 90 days. I don't want to just stay at home all the time, so what I do is my wife and I, we plan trips every 90 days. So every quarter we will go on a vacation, and that's fine, because it's scheduled on the wall map. I know when it's coming, and I'm happy to do it then because I'm off work and I'm trying to enjoy myself.
But all the people who are constantly hopping around and traveling and doing all of this, you'll honestly find that your businesses are struggling and they're not making much progress and they're certainly not making much money. All of the people in the world who have made the most money and have had the most successful businesses, they fixed their location, because by fixing your location you fix your variables. And when you fix your variables, you have less decision making fatigue occurring and you can put your decision making power into things that are going to make the boat go faster.
So those are the four things that I recommend you implement today to be more productive and get more things done. Now what I want you to do right now is if you've liked this video just click that like button right now. Also, subscribe to my YouTube channel. Go and click my subscribe button and then you'll be able to see more videos like this, and I release a new one every single week.
Also, if you want my wall map calendar which I showed you before and you definitely want to use this, then look at the link beneath this video, because I give you a link where you can go and get it for free. You can download this wall map calendar, use it yourself, totally for free. You don't even have to enter your email address or anything. You just get it and you can use it, and it will honestly change your life.
Also what I want you to do is just leave me something in the comments section below. If you liked this video, if you've got some feedback or questions for me, just let me know in the comments below, because I'm going to go through them all myself personally. I'm going to read them and reply to them myself, so let me know what you think in the comments.
That's it for this video. Thanks for watching, and I'll see you on the next one soon.