How you can be more productive and fulfilled (Podcast)

In December 2020, I was a guest of podcasters Drs. Shelley and Chad Prevost. Having enjoyed their Facebook Group, Big Self School, I jumped at the chance to be interviewed by them. We had a fabulous time. They are caring, intelligent, and engaging people. A link to the complete conversation is below.


Like any good interviewer, Chad provided some questions to me beforehand. He had researched my blog, and I was impressed that he came up with questions that were tailored to the type of work I do.  Below are my notes and some links for more information. Listen to the podcast for all the details!


How do you help people frame their “Why?” behind the issues that get in the way of their productivity?

The purpose of being “neat and tidy” is NOT to be neat and tidy. It is a means to an end.

Uncovering the “why” starts with an initial assessment, and then we peel back the layers of the onion together in coaching.

What is the biggest productivity problem you see in your clients?

Perfectionism! Strive for progress, not perfection.

I help clients redefine progress:

  • Do it myself
  • Delegate it
  • Defer it
  • Dump it

How do you create a powerful to do list?

Avoid the memory trap – you are fired from the job of remembering your tasks
Everyone needs a centralized and comprehensive to-do list
Every task should contain a verb – tasks are actions!

We’ve seen a massive shift in people’s work-life behavior throughout the year, and a huge one I bet you’re working with your clients on is Working from Home. Could you tell us what people are experiencing?

We are experiencing the most massive paradigm shift in work since the Industrial Revolution.

People are unique and experiencing it in different ways. Most of my clients are doing well with it.

What does it mean when we’re perpetually procrastinating?

Let’s define procrastination: Dr. Piers Steele says, “voluntarily delay an intended course of action despite expecting to be worse-off for the delay.”

I tell clients that there will be tasks they intend to do that they don’t get to. That is not necessarily procrastination.

If procrastination is voluntary and perpetual, then there is something else going on. Address the “why.”

One of the ways we work more efficiently is through prioritizing, and you’ve written about how one way or another, we are all already prioritizing. The point is to prioritize with intention, whether it’s managing our email inboxes, or our to do lists. What are some specific ways you coach people to prioritize with intention?

I don’t typically recommend categorical (ABC-123) methods of prioritization.

I recommend filtering out what shouldn’t be done and use progress dates.

Do you have any tips for getting back on track after you’ve been interrupted at work?

Take 10-Give 5.

Humans crave connection. Whether we’re introverted or extroverted, we could all use accountability to achieve our productivity goals, right? What do you think about finding an accountability partner, and how do you go about finding one? What should one look like?

There’s no ability like accountability!

Start looking. Be intentional. You want someone who thinks differently than you.


What practices or routines work for you?

I have used Outlook Tasks for years and years. I write love letters to Outlook Tasks on my blog.

My calendar reflects me as a total person, not just as a business owner.

I meditate 4 – 5 times per week.


Crazy Productive eBook Series

Are you ready to prioritize tasks, address time challenges, and master your information?

Buy the Crazy Productive series and you will receive all six books at a discounted price.

Dr. Melissa GratiasMelissa Gratias (pronounced “Gracious”) used to think that productivity was a result of working long hours. And, she worked a lot of hours. Then, she learned that productivity is a skill set, not a personality trait. Now, Melissa is a productivity expert who coaches and trains other businesspeople to be more focused, balanced, and effective. She is a prolific writer and speaker who travels the world helping people change how they work and improve how they live. Contact her at or 912-417-2505. Sign up to receive her productivity tips via email.

1 Comment

  1. Nkosinathi Mdleleni

    I like the point of addressing time challenges. and master your information. Accountability is ultimately crucial in order to see progress and chieve the set outcomes of ones responsibilities. Thank you for your emphasy in theses.


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