Is 80/20 a real thing?

Many of us have heard about it, but what exactly does it mean? Many know it as Pareto’s Law, but also informally known as the 80/20 rule. So much can be interpreted from this, and we could take a deep dive into how it works, but I simply want to highlight the core message of 80/20.

Many of you have heard, “80% of your results come from 20% of your inputs”, or some variation, but what I really take away from the Pareto’s Law is one word: focus. Meaning, only a few things matter in making major changes in your life. It doesn’t take drastic, monumental changes to impact your results, but more so, simple, vital functions that are both easy to do and easy not to do. I say simple because we can all do it, and I emphasize vital because, well, they are important. In fact, they are so important, that not doing them will subtly move you in the wrong direction, but doing them will, obviously, move you in the right direction, although it might not be as fast as we all want. I’m sure all of us would agree that we can be impatient at times.

That’s the challenge with seeing the long-term results you want: they take time. Yes, we can experience things quickly, but long-term sustained results require simple, yet important and disciplined habits. Period.

As the underlining message emphasizes focus on things that matter, it simultaneously emphasizes that most things don’t. In fact, most us do things on a daily basis that matter very little in accomplishing our goals, yet we do them.

Remember, if 20% of what we do leads to 80% of the results we seek, than 80% of what we do accounts for 20% of what we seek. Cut the extra out, as it will make you more effective.

You could also take this farther: 4% of what we do leads to 64% of the results we seek. We can keep going, but the truth is that there are only a few things that matter in accomplishing any goal. They are simple, profound, and greatly impactful on our results. Take the time to identify these functions, as they will make the biggest difference in where you will end up.

 

JKH

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