It is my understanding and personal experience that the biggest problem new IMers and I'm not talking about noobs, I'm talking about people that have the know-how to make money online, encounter is not one of time or resources but that can be a problem as well. The problem I'm talking about is the reason why I haven't had genuine peace of mind in the last two years. My story starts as these stories often do with a goal. I am an extremely curious fella' I want to learn and know everything I can. I knew that you can make money online from the very start but I have a all or nothing mindset so I never figured that you can do something like make a living online, I thought it's either making millions with amazing "inventions" like Google or nothing. So after I stumbled upon first SEO and then later IM in general I quickly started making contacts and sure enough soon I talked with some people that told me how you can make a nice living online. The first thing I told them "hah, that's amazing and so easy...you don't need any programming skills or anything" but I would soon see that things aren't always the way they seem. I learned about SEO in record time, I was tech savvy before, making websites, operating with CMS was never a problem and soon I learned about SEO, what determines ranking on Google and other search engines, best practices, what gets you in trouble...Soon after that I made my first two web sites and did link building for them. I soon realized that SEO was hard for the exact same reason it is so simple...it mostly consists of doing the same thing over and over again and that was a real problem for me. This was the real reason I joined BHW, I wanted a smart way of making money with SEO, one that didn't involve me doing "manual labor". From that period up until a few months ago I didn't do any real work for myself and that was a real problem. The first reason I didn't do work for myself was because I didn't have to, I was comfortable doing as little as possible for others as a service but every time I would go out, have some fun there was this nagging feeling that felt like "you worthless slacker, go to work!" so I couldn't really have fun. My problem was that I would start my day the wrong way and it would just continue going that way until I suddenly realized that it's midnight and I haven't done shit...and it would go on that way for almost 2 years and then I decided it was time to put an end to it. Just hidding a little easter egg here, most people have already closed this thread because of their lack of focus, something that is essential in the information overload filled world of IM. So I decided it was time to do something and to do it fast. The main reason doing SEO for myself didn't work for me was because it was too slow and there were no clear deadlines. When you do SEO it can take up to a few months to get any real results in the form of visitors or more importantly money. That is as a lot of time to keep working without seeing any kind of reward. One thing that is important to understand when it comes to focus and productivity is that it's a muscle and it needs to be exercised. I first wanted to do something that would earn me money while also improving my productivity. I started up a SEO service, got myself a few clients and it was alright, I would work a few hours each day and slowly started thinking about passive ways to earn money and started working on that as well. Soon I joined another industry, not because I liked it but because I was really dissatisfied by the service I got in it. I'm talking about article writing, probably the part of SEO that most people hate because of them lousy service prodivers. What bothered me about the article writers I've done business with before was accountability. I never really felt like I could count on them to keep their deadlines or deliver something ASAP if I really need it. I wanted to create a service where a client could say I really need this done in 3 hours and he could count that if it's humanly possible it would be done. Are you still with me ? Those were the productivity related problems that I encountered in my time. Now many of that made it to here are probably thinking "I really didn't want to know that much about you and your problems". Well that's kinda the point, if you can't read through a 700 word post you desperately need to do something to improve your focus if you hope of making money in IM. Now to the method itself What you will need: Calendar (Recommendation - Google Calendar) To-do list (Recommendation - Wunderlist) Optional - Smartphone Before we get started on the method you should prepare your workspace. Turn off anything that blinks, beeps or vibrates. Push notifications, email notifications, IM notifications all of that should be turned off and not just for now. If you have these things on auto launch with your OS you need to turn all of that off. Anything that can distract you from what you're doing should be turned off Get your calendar of choice, I would highly recommend that you go with some software based one like Google Calendar because they're very easy to manage, if you have a smartphone it's always with you AND it has alerts. The first event you should create is for scheduling. Create an event that repeats every day before the end of your work day and reminds you to setup a schedule for tomorrow. The prime idea of this method is to schedule everything you do in a given day. That way you have boundaries and you specifically know when you have to work, when you CAN'T slack off and you are constantly reminded of this. So each day you schedule your next work day, and the following day you just stick by your schedule and any time you don't have anything schedules you can do whatever you want but during the scheduled tasks you can only do what the calendar dictates. As long as you follow this schedule you will be productive. The other thing is thoughts and new tasks. A smartphone is best for this but if you don't have one you could use some kind of notebook and just digitize it once you get to your computer. My to-do list of choice is Wunderlist and I would highly recommend it to anyone because I've tested every other to-do list and this is the only once I've used for more than a month. The idea is to get any thoughts and to-dos you might have out of your head. The reasoning behind this is simple, if you want to do something and try to remember it, trying to remember it will preoccupy you and while trying to work you will be distracted or even worse if you forget something that you wanted or needed to do you will waste brainpower on trying to remember it instead of working on the task at hand. In Wunderlist create at least 2 to-do lists - Work and Personal. You can create as many as you want, there is no limit but have at least two. I can personally guarantee that as long as you follow this method to the T you will be productive and ultimately if you even remotely know what you're doing, you will have success. Please share your thoughts on productivity and how to improve this method even further.