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We've got it all wrong when it comes to getting things done, says energy expert Tony Schwartz, author of The Way We're Working Isn't Working. It's not how many hours you put in that determines how productive you are, it's how much energy you're able to invest during the hours you work. Master this one simple concept, and you'll not only be more effective, you'll also be much happier.
The challenge is not to get better at managing your time, which is finite, but rather about managing your energy, which you can systematically increase and regularly renew. As human beings, we need four very different sources of energy to operate at our best: physical, emotional, mental and spiritual. None is sufficient by itself, and they all influence one another.
Too often, we take our energy for granted. We assume that if there's more demand, our capacity to meet it will just naturally expand. But if you often find yourself feeling tired or overwhelmed or stressed out, you know that's not true.
The fact is that if we're not intentionally finding ways to increase and renew our energy, we're depleting ourselves. If we're not getting stronger, we're getting weaker.
Before you go any further, I want you to stop right here and take our Energy Audit. This simple assessment will give you an immediate window into how well you're managing your energy across the four dimensions. When you've finished, I'll share a little more about what your scores mean.
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