The laws of productivity

"Don't work harder, work smarter." Just like in science and the natural world, productivity is governed by laws. In this fun and informative podcast presented by former businesswoman turned stand-up comic Sarah Donnelly, hack your productivity with mini-tutorials that take less than five minutes.

Podcast - 1 season

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Season 1

8 episodes
Murphy's Law
Murphy's Law

"Anything that can go wrong will go wrong." Murphy's law is most often associated with negativity. But it’s actually a great way to set up an action plan and get your to-do list back on track. Sarah Donnelly has some techniques to help learn from your mistakes—before you even make them.

S1 • 1 • 5mn
Parkinson's Law
Parkinson's Law

Are you an urgency addict who does everything at the last minute? Parkinson's law proves people are more likely to waste time than to make the most of it. If you want time on your side, your best weapon might just be the humble tomato.

S1 • 2 • 4mn
Carlson's law
Carlson's law

If you feel like you're more efficient at home than in an open-plan office, you’re not alone. According to Carlson's Law, interruption reduces productivity and zaps your energy. The solution? Time management techniques like batching, time blocking and deep work.

S1 • 3 • 5mn
Laborit's law
Laborit's law

Laborit's law, or “the law of least effort,” is the scientific theory of procrastination. It’s human nature to seek instant gratification by tackling the easiest tasks on your to-do list. But soon the boring tasks pile up and, with them, so do your stress levels. So do yourself a favour and eat the frog first!

S1 • 4 • 6mn
Illitch's law
Illitch's law

As Illich's Law proves, perfect is the enemy of good. By aiming too high and taking on too much, your productivity plummets and you risk burning out. To keep from getting burnt by your best intentions, organise your day according to chronobiology.

S1 • 5 • 5mn
Hofstadter's law
Hofstadter's law

Have you ever promised to do something tomorrow only to run out of time? Hofstadter's law asserts that it’s human nature to underestimate how much time a project will take. By following the agile method and rule of three, you can overcome this optimistic bias and adjust your schedule so that it aligns with tasks in a realistic way.

S1 • 6 • 5mn
Pareto's law
Pareto's law

According to Pareto’s Law, 80% of the results you obtain come from only 20% of your efforts. The Eisenhower method helps you focus your energy on the 20% that counts. Popularised by one of the most famous US presidents, this tactic involves dividing tasks into groups of importance and urgency.

S1 • 7 • 5mn
Fraisse's law
Fraisse's law

With Fraisse's Law, it’s a scientific fact—the more unpleasant the task, the more time seems to drag on. To get around this law and ensure your to-do list is less painful, Donnelly has three techniques for organizing your time so that it always flies.

S1 • 8 • 5mn
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