I have developed a simple five-step system that allows you to focus on your Genius Zone:

  1. Complete a time log.
  2. Calculate your hourly rate.
  3. Identify your genius.
  4. Filter tasks through the Focus Funnel.
  5. Write your Stop Doing List.

Step 1: Complete a time log

A time log (as shown in table 6.1, overleaf) is a simple tool used to help you understand where you are spending your time. I recommend you do this for a minimum of two weeks, twice a year. This will give you clarity and insight into what you need to keep doing and, more importantly, what you need to stop doing. You can use the time log tool in the Ultimate Stop Doing List Tool by simply going to

Table 6.1: time log


Step 2: Calculate your hourly rate

In order to determine your genius we need to start with a clear measure against which we will evaluate each task. The simplest measure is to understand the dollar value of an hour of your time. When you understand the value of an hour it becomes easier to determine which tasks are worth your time and which ones you need to stop doing.

Work out your hourly rate with this simple mathematical calculation:

  1. What is your income goal for the next 12 months? Include your wage and profit from the business.
  2. How many weeks do you intend on working this year? 52 weeks less the number of weeks of holidays you want to take.
  3. How many hours ...

Get The Stop Doing List now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience books, live events, courses curated by job role, and more from O’Reilly and nearly 200 top publishers.