Report: Climbing the highest mountain of Europe with Refuga

Report: Climbing the highest mountain of Europe with Refuga

“Do you want to go with me to the top of Europe?”

… That was the question my boyfriend Lars asked me in the beginning of 2015. He had climbed Kilimanjaro in Tanzania with Refuga and to put it mildly I was very envious! Now I had the chance. The chance to go out of my comfort zone and to get totally away from the everyday life.

“I think it’s gonna be a bit tougher and colder compared to Kilimanjaro, even though it’s not that high…” he said. But with my years as a scout on hikes in Denmark and Norway, i just thought that it would doable – This was going to be my next big, unforgettable experience.

In this post I’m gonna describe this trip – One of my life’s biggest adventures.

Beautiful, but incredible tough warm-up days

The group was 5 other Danes, one Indian-Amercian and our two guides, Ukranian Georgii and Russian Alex – and of course Lars and I. We arrived at 3am to our hotel, which was in an altitude of 2.000 meters / 6561 feet a the small mountain village called  Terskol. It was here we started our first warm-up hike the next morning. No light start, just out spending the whole day in the mountains – And boy, was it tough! Even though I have hiked quite a lot in mountains I was surprised about how steep the tracks we walked on were. With a temperature 30ºC / 86ºF, we were sweating like crazy in our shorts, t-shirts and huge mountain boots.

Climbing Mount Elbrus with Refuga

Even though it was super tough we managed to hike to an altitude of 3.400 meters / 11.154, which meant an increase of 1.400 meters / 4.593 feet in just one day on super steep tracks. We reached a point where we had an incredible view of the two tops of Elbrus (there is 21 meters / 68 feet difference between them). It also gave an incredible view of the tops around Elbrus and to the whole Caucasous mountain range, which go all the way from the Black Sea to the Caspian Sea. Sitting there at the top of Cheget, I was convinced that it was all worth it and that we would have an amazing trip. But I had no idea about how tough it was going to be.

Climbing Mount Elbrus with Refuga

The next warm-up day was just as amazing, but even hotter when we started out. This day we got to the snow on the top of a mountain close to Elbrus. We had to cross big areas with snow, paths with ice and deep holes, where you could sink pretty deep down. We didn’t have all of our snow equipment on yet, so we were all skating around and most of us fell a few times. But we had a great time in the snow and managed to go to 3.700 meters / 12.140 feet.

Climbing Mount Elbrus with Refuga

Russian Traditions

In theory, we could be anywhere in the world that had beautiful mountains and many of the mountains and areas we walked through, reminded me a lot about the Norwegian mountains. But we didn’t totally forget where we were.

On the first evening, after 10 hours of tough hiking, the program said “Banya”, which is Russian sauna. Not quite the same as the prior experiences I have had with saunas. The humidity in the sauna is much higher and they just kept on pooring water on the rocks, so the temperature got over 93ºC / 199ºF. We also got introduced to the Russian sauna tradition of hitting each other with wet birch and oak branches, to get the blood flowing in the body. And to make things a bit tougher than they were already they also switched between the sauna and jumping in a small pool with ice cold water from the mountains. It was super fun to try the Russian sauna traditions, but the best thing was that it loosened up the muscles after a really tough day in the mountains.

Climbing Mount Elbrus with Refuga

On the second evening, we had a feast of caucasian specialities at a restaurant that was decorated with mountains from Elbrus, flags and greetings from mountain climbers from the whole world. At the restaurant we were served Kitchjin; a thin pancake with eater patato-, cheese or meat stuffing. I think it was more a local dish than something Russian, but I super delicious. The eat a lot of lamb and at every restaurant they have an outdoor grill, where they barbeque the delicious lamb meat, so it’s super tender.

The meeting with the snow

On day 3 we packed up all of our stuff and moved from the cosy setting of the hotel to 3.700 meters / 12.140 feet with lifts. From here we had to walk with our huge bags up to 4.100 meters to / 13.450 feet, where base camp is. Here we stayed in a small container house. This was our home for the next 3-4 days. Even though you plan to get to the top of a mountain like Elbrus, the weather controls everything. If the weather is not with you, then you will just not get up there. Then you have to try another time.

Climbing Mount Elbrus with Refuga

Base camp was way over the snow line, and we finally got to use our crampons (also called steigeisen, which are things you put under your shoes, so you get a better grip). We also practiced using our ice axes by falling down a small hill and using it to stop the fall. It was exciting and fun to try, but also frightening to know, that there really was a risk of falling down on the way to the top. Our guides also taught us some breathing techniques, so we could keep the pace up even though the air gets thinner as you go up. Breathe in via the nose, all the way down to the lungs and a big breathe out the mouth, short break and then repeat. And then we just had to do it aligned with each step we took…

Sunrise at 5.000 meters / 16.400 feet

Then the last big effort before the attempt for summit arrived. We left camp at 3am in the morning to hike up to 5.000 meters / 16.400 feet. We were tied together with a rope in 2 x 5 person, so we walked on a line, practicing the breathing technique, walking at the same pace and using our ice axes. We walked up the endless wall of snow. It was super tough and a couple of us were trying super hard not to fall a sleep, because of the lack of oxygen, the very repetitive pace and because there was nothing to see and no one to talk to.

A super tough day for everyone, but also almost too tough for a few of us… But we all struggled and got up to 5.000 meters / 16.400 feet – and the view was amazing! Impossible to descibe. The clouds were like a soft blanket between all of the surrounding tops that was covered in snow. Not until know were we able to get a real view of the whole Caucasian mountain range. Our guide Alex told us, that in clear weather it was sometimes posssible to see all the way to the Black Sea.

Climbing Mount Elbrus with Refuga

It takes luck and good weather to reach the top

We spent a day more at Base camp, where we used the rest day to just take a short hike. Why? The more you get used to altitude and to walking up and down, the less risk of getting hit by altitude sickness. That night the guides talked about going to the top sooner than planned, because it looked like there could be a window with good weather. The weather just means so much, so if there was a chance we had to take it.

But that night the weather got worse, so we didn’t attempt the top before the next day. Most of us were wide awake, but at 1am our guide, Alex, told us that the weather was too bad, so we went back to bed and got some sleep. But suddenly at 2am Alex woke us up with “COME ON, LET’S GO”. At this point we knew Alex pretty well, so we all knew he was serious and we jumped up, all extremely excited about making the last push to the top.

While the sky became lighter and lighter our two lines of people moved slowly up the white wall towards the top of Elbrus. I didn’t think it had been this hard the other days. Was the pace, the rhythm, that it was so steep or maybe the altitude that was giving me a hard time?

Climbing Mount Elbrus with Refuga

I’m not gonna make it

Suddenly I felt like I couldn’t breathe properly and I had to concentrate like crazy to follow the breathing technique that we had been taught. There was still a long way to the top. My body was panicking about the lack of oxygen and I started to cry. After a short break, where the others had to wait, I managed to get back in to the rhythm and we got to stretch that was a bit more flat, so I was able to keep up the pace.

Between the two peaks, an area called “the saddle”, we took a small break, got some water and some quick energy. But when we were about to go again my breathing was a big problem again and I couldn’t keep the pace up the next super steep part, even though our pace was super slow now. I was crying and shaking and sunk together on the path. I just couldn’t take the thought about moving on.

I admit, at this point I didn’t believe I was going to make it. 

Our guide reacted fast. He made the other group pass us, detached himself and me from the robe. He quickly asked “You still want to go up, right?”. Not like an option to turn around, but just a confirmation that I was able to make it. He walked behind me, so I could walk at my own pace, talking tiny, safe steps, when I felt I had the air to do it. This was much better for me and I felt safe again. The clouds around us got thicker and we were barely able to see the back of the rest of the group in front of us. But we continued up the steep side of the mountain with ice and snow, leaning in on the mountain wall. This was the steepest part so far.

But soon after we got to a flat path again and it was no longer a problem for me to follow the pace of the rest of the group. I was extremely exhausted, but it felt so close now! I could feel the excitement. This is it, this is it, this is it! We caught up with the rest of the group on a really narrow path, where it was only possible to have your feet super close to each other. The wind was hitting us hard, with over 40 m/s / 130 ft/s. The narrow path ended up on a small platform, where I used – what felt like – my last energy to push myself up. Here there was just enough space for all of us.

Climbing Mount Elbrus with Refuga

It took me a couple of minutes and a lot of breathing before I understood it. God damn, we are here!!

Around me the rest of the group was yelling with their arms above their heads. They were hugging each other and bent down to hug me. I didn’t dare to stand up, of fear that my legs would collapse under me or that the wind would blow me down the small top. Sitting down, I was able to get hugs from everyone in the group, most of them had tears in their eyes, saying that they were proud of me!

The crazy wind made the clouds pass just by us super fast. Once in a while they opened up and gave us an incredible view of the blue sky and the sun shining above the clouds. It’s impossible to describe. It was pure happiness!

Climbing Mount Elbrus with Refuga

It felt like a dream

Going down was so easy compared to getting up. Breathing and pain in the muscles was no longer a problem. We did it! Unfortunately, we were still covered in clouds and couldn’t enjoy the view, but going back down felt way shorter and we were almost dancing down. It felt so crazy that we had just been at the highest point of the European continent. Everyone we met on the way down asked us “Summit?”. Now it was our turn to answer “YES!” with a big smile.

Are you considering climbing Elbrus? DO IT!

Karl Bushby: The Man Who Chose To Walk Around The World

Karl Bushby: The Man Who Chose To Walk Around The World

Whatever long walk you had before in your life, it would literally be considered a walk in the park compared to Karl Bushby’s super long, lengthy and continued walk. This walk started on the 1st of November, 1998. Bushby began a journey from the southern tip of South America to his home in Britain for the sake of proving that it is possible to complete an unbroken path around the world, in addition to a number of personal reasons .

Without using any type of transportation but his feet, he will be walking 36,000-miles during his quest to reach his home in Hull, England from Punta Arenas, Chile. He already made a new record by proving to the world that it is possible for a human to cross the Bering Strait from Alaska to Russia.

Karl follows two important rules: Never use any type of transportation to take him from one place to the other and never go back to his home in the UK until he finishes his walk. He recently managed to get a Russian visa after intentionally walking the wrong way from Los Angeles to the Russian embassy in Washington D.C, as he was struck by a five year ban from entering the country. Luckily he was able to continue this heroic trip.

Karl Bushby

Driven by Wanderlust

Reading about Bushby’s story, you’ll try to just imagine all the obstacles he faced during his walk and you will never be able to understand how someone can overcome such incredibly harsh conditions while being able to resist the urge to take a plane back home. Going alone to the UK from South America without using any type of transportation available, what kind of a strong, bold and insane man would do such a thing? “How such an idea came into being, I guess that was part of my immediate culture or environment,” This is how he describes the reasons that drove him to this point.

Being a Paratrooper when he was young, competitiveness was always around the corner, which affected his personality greatly. Wanderlust plays an important role in taking this decision too. In addition to his environment and past history which includes a diagnosis of dyslexia when he was 15 and being the son of a decorated Special Air Services officer. One should also put in mind the failure of his marriage after spending 12 years in the military and its relation to his ultimate walk.

This unique equation led to the formation of Karl Bushby’s unusual decision of walking around the world. Yet, everyone can easily change his motivations as time passes, so we probably need to ask him after 17 years and thousands of craggy and hard miles, did his reasons change?

Karl Bushby

The Day He Had to Stop

Reading his story and knowing about his route, you can easily count the number of grim days he had alone. From starving to death in Patagonia to losing sponsors after the financial crisis in 2008 and going through the “Road of Bones” where the ground will literally freeze after four feets or more, plus getting a five years visa ban from the Russian government because of bureaucracy, which was a scary deadlock for his journey. Still, the worst day for him is not a bit related to all that.

“It was all about a woman, what else could bring a man to his knees?”. The woman which Karl genuinely describes as his soul mate, unexpectedly visited his thoughts on a cold winter night, nine years after he left her behind in Colombia. This was the only day he was not able to get out of his tent and carry on with his mission. The terror about this relationship died two years after this day and so died everything linked to this relationship.

Karl Bushby

A New Karl

We always notice how traveling changes us for better every time, specially If you are solo travelling or you’re doing an unusual activity while you’re in another country way far from your comfort zone. Climbing a mountain for example. As expected, Karl’s expedition changed him in so many ways that he could never have imagined. He now achieved so much that he realized his own potentials and got an inner strength boost that is helping him become more self-confidence.

Karl talks about breaking his stereotypes and changing preconceived ideas about certain countries because of his walk. “Countries more known in the media for danger, intolerance and terrorism. But, without exception, my encounters on the road made me realise that the vast majority of people in the world are good people,” He happily now thinks that the world consists of mostly good people who are ready to help anyone and very few evil citizens of the world.

To his surprise, his body actually did not fall apart after thousands and thousands of miles, except for his toenails which were falling one week after he started. This also made him amazed by how powerful the human body is and how essential it is to treat our bodies in a decent way to expect more endurance.

Son Joins Father

Since this mission is taking a big part of his life, Karl had to be away while his son, Adam, grew up. He left his only child while he was only five years old. Now 24-years-old Adam, decided to join his father for two weeks. This happened when Karl was doing a 3000 thousand miles walk from Los Angeles to Washington D.C hoping to convince the Russian embassy that he should get a visa. It was an important part of his journey and the first time both of them got to actually talk and know about each other.

This is how much he had to sacrifice. Leaving his only son when he was just five and not being able to watch him grow up like any other normal father. He also sacrificed a father/son relationship that may never be restored. “Out of everyone I knew in this world, I knew my son least of all.” Karl didn’t have any means of communication with his son for years but managed to reach him after contacting one of his friends on Facebook. While he was away, his son was suffering from depression and self abuse and had to use medication and therapy.

Whether we agree with what Karl is doing or not we have to acknowledge that Karl is no ordinary man. That brings us to the point which everyone’s world revolves around, happiness. Doing what you love and sticking to it no matter what, because you know that that is your number one sort of delight in the world.

Studying this man’s case can provide a lifetime supply of motivation and free lessons on how to keep moving towards your happiness and life goals when the world is pushing you to stop. How to keep moving when your toenails are falling off, when you’re starving to death, when you’re in the middle of a deadly sand storm in Peru or when you are jailed for 71 days in two different countries.

Karl Bushby


6 tools for getting more out of your email

6 tools for getting more out of your email

I have a confession to make: a grappling addiction has been troubling me for the past year or so – subscribing to newsletters, future releases, LinkedIn groups, startups that haven’t even launched and basically anything that sparks my interest in the first 30 seconds of scrolling on a given web page. And although some form curiosity is constantly listed among most common found traits in entrepreneurial spirits – which puts me in good company, at least mentally for now 🙂  -, it’s taking its toll on the way I am able to deal with the tens of e-mails making their way to my inbox.

Checking e-mail frequently is already known as a productivity diminisher, so the only thing I’ve actually been able to do up to now which really works is having a fixed amount of time during which I only check e-mail. No ifs or buts. Having 30 minutes or so in your least productive moment of day to go quikcly through e-mails and act on those which need acting is the basic thing you need to do if you’re flooded with messages. But since this has stopped being enough some time ago, I went looking for the best ways and/or tools to better manage my e-mail – here the top ten e-mail hacks myself as well as you should apply now. Bear in mind that the below solutions are tailored for Gmail, which is my currently used e-mail client; where applicable, I will point out if these are available for other e-mail clients as well.


Hacking your inbox requires the ability to sort instantly any e-mail and see if it needs immediate attention or not. The most straightforward way I usually do that is verifying who the sender is; since Gmail – and any e-mail client, for that matter – only shows the name of the sender while in standard list mode, my best chance of verifying who the sender is would be to go all the way through his/her e-mail, down to the signature, and that is largely inefficient.

Rapportive may have a good solution to this issue. It’s a Google Chrome/Mozilla Firefox extension working with Gmail, produced by LinkedIn, which shows in the right-hand side of each e-mail, a picture of the sender, their location, job and company, as well as shared connections, all pulled from their LinkedIn profile. Plus, let’s say someone is pitching you an idea, or trying to establish rapport with your business – you can instantly connect with them via LinkedIn without leaving your e-mail. The only downfall of Rapportive is that you still have to open each e-mail for it to be effective. Maybe implement a tooltip over each sender’s name in the list display would prove to be an even more efficient hack?

Check out Rapportive here.

Sidekick by Hubspot

When sending a lot of e-mail each day, especially when dealing with clients, possible new contacts or other people which have tried to connect with me, one thing that I’d like to be on top of is e-mail which people have not responded to, because that’s content to which I was interested enough to respond to or react by e-mail. Hubspot, a market leader in inbound marketing, offers Sidekick, which apart from having some of the functions of Rapportive such a viewing profiles of people sending you e-mail, it can also track which of your sent e-mails have been opened by their recipients, which is extremely useful when verifying which e-mail needs follow-up actions.

For a financial upgrade to $10 per user monthly, you can have access to unlimited notifications on recipients opening you e-mail. Soon enough, Hubspot plans to include e-mail scheduling capabilities, allowing even better impact of your e-mails which, in turn, will require less time for you to spend in your inbox. Sidekick may also be used to hack Outlook accounts, if that’s your custom e-mail account used at your office.

Check out Sidekick here.

Ugly E-mail

While running across tools allowing you to see whether your e-mails have been seen or not, I figured that the reverse might also prove to be a problem, and not only a hack: what if I want to see which of the e-mails I receive have tracking pixels enabled, so that the sender can actually see, in a Whatsapp-esque style, if I’ve opened their email? That would only open the gates to even more e-mail flooding my inbox, which would beat the purpose of any hack.

In this case, Ugly E-mail promises to be a good addition to my e-mail client. Featured on Product Hunt, Ugly E-mail checks all incoming e-mail to see which of them come from an e-mail account using a tracking tool, and then marks them with the “evil eye” for easy spotting and avoiding. Currently, it supports tracking pixels from Streak, Yesware, Mandrill, MailChimp and many more.

Check out Ugly E-mail here.

TL;DR E-mail

People are not always very good at writing e-mail copy, simply because it’s so complicated to bundle whatever you want to say in an e-mail title, so much so that your intended recipient will open your e-mail. That being said, a lot of important e-mail may be left out due to my sender’s inability to communicate onto me what their intended purpose for sending the e-mail is.And if it’s important e-mail from my perspective, I wish I had a simple method to find that out, even if copy was bad.

TL;DR E-mail’s algorithm seems to be achieving that, as it takes the first 30 words of each e-mail and turns it into an actionable social media-like post, on which you can reply if needed. In social media style, you can also send “likes” to e-mails. Unlike other e-mail hacks, it’s available as a standalone iOS and Apple Watch app, with the latter providing additional capabilities such as read-time estimation and sending longer e-mails to your iPhone inbox for later read.

Check out TL;DR E-mail here.


Since using Pocket constantly for the past year to save content I want to revert to later when I have more time on my hands, I have felt the need to be able to do the same with e-mails that seem to be interesting, while being able to remember to revisit them later. Of course Gmail offers the standard tagging and favorite color-coded stars for this, but if I constantly receive e-mail that seems more relevant even only for the fact that it’s more recent, important stuff easily gets left behind.

For this, I plan using SaneBox and its inbox management hacking facilities. SaneBox can create folders connected to alarms that remind you when you want to read an e-mail depending on that folder’s label – Later, Tomorrow at 2 PM, Next Week and so on – where you can drag-and-drop e-mails which you plan on reading later on. These will be snoozed up until that point and revived to your inbox whenever programmed. There’s also a folder called Black Hole where you can drag all e-mails from senders which you do not want to hear from ever again. A 14-day trial is available, with plans starting at $7 per month after that.

Check out SaneBox here.

Remember I said in the beginning that I seem to be having a rough time not subscribing to any kind of website that seems even remotely interesting – and this leads to pain-filled moments when I just have to delete scores of newsletter e-mails which may, and usually do contain interesting stuff.

I’m glad I ran across, a specific hacking tool to be used for all newsletters and subscriptions in your inbox. combines all these into one single place and allows you to easily unsubscribe for what you really don’t want to receive anymore. But the fun part starts afterwards, when the remaining content is organized in a customizable daily digest e-mail, with information from all those newsletters. After allowing to scan my inbox for subscription, I found out that these amount in the hundreds – 259, to be more precise!

Check out here.

The next step will be taking all these hacks for a spin in the following fortnight, and of course I’ll revert with conclusions and possible improvements with my e-mail usage I have seen – for the record, I’m using RescueTime on all my device to track weekly my time spent using each and every app or software, so I’ll have a clear evidence of what and if something happens.

How do you get along with your e-mail? What hacks have you been using in your day-to-day activity in order to be more productive and less e-mail addicted? Let me know in the comments.

Forget goals, let’s start building habits and processes.

Forget goals, let’s start building habits and processes.

As people, we’re obsessed with setting ourselves goals. We’re obsessed with looking at what we do and finding out if there are better ways we can do things. Rightly so, why wouldn’t we want to improve our lives by improving the way we do things?

Today I’m going to talk about goals but more specifically why setting “goals” might be holding back your productivity and stopping you from achieving as much as you would like. As an alternative solution I would like us to consider creating systems and processes.

Think about the times you have set yourself a goal:

Perhaps you told yourself you would start going to the gym in January to lose all the excess christmas weight.

Perhaps you set yourself a goal of being able to code fluently within a year.

Perhaps you set yourself a goal of quitting your job, working for yourself and working on a beach somewhere warm.

Whatever it is, we’ve all been there and set goals for ourselves. I wonder if you wrote a list of all the goals you’ve ever set in your life and compared that list to a list of all the goals you’d ever achieved. How many would be in both lists?

First of all, before we understand why setting goals might not be making the most of ones productivity, let’s look into the reasons people set goals.

“Everybody has their own Mount Everest they were put on this earth to climb.”

Seth Godin

We’re constantly being reminded if we’re not setting goals for ourselves then we aren’t going to improve, we’re not going to get where we want to be and we won’t achieve the things we want to achieve.

There’s a saying which says if you don’t try to achieve your own dreams, you’ll be hired to help someone else achieve theirs. This is probably the reason why every year at New Years, or every quarter during your business meetings, people think about their life or their business and set themselves goals.

So we’ve established so far that there are two schools of thought. First the people who think goals are effective and regularly set goals for themselves or their company. Second the people who think goals are ineffective. We should also consider the third group of people. There are some people who don’t consider setting goals an issue they need to address in their life.

“If you don’t design your own life plan, chances are you’ll fall into someone else’s plan. And guess what they have planned for you? Not much.”

Jim Rohn

Some people are okay with the way their lives are and don’t wish to seek out any further goals. If you’re one of those people then that’s okay and the advice about setting habits and processes can still be relevant to you. You don’t have to start employing habits and processes in your life that lead to an end goal. In some case you might create habits and goals simply to make your life a little bit easier.

Aubrey Daniels, in his book, Oops! 13 Management Practices That Waste Time And Money, argues that stretch goals are an ineffective management practice.

Let’s think about what happens when we set goals for ourselves or our company. Take this goal for example:

“I want to start going to the gym so I can lose weight and be more healthy”.

This is a goal perhaps a lot of you have considered before and it’s a goal that often falls through. This is one of the reasons gyms offer special offers and discounts in January because they know  this will be people’s goals and they will be willing to pay for the service.

The first thing we need to understand about goals is why we have them. The fact something is a goal means it’s something you don’t already have/can’t already do.

So in the example of our gym membership, we obviously don’t go to the gym already because if we did, it wouldn’t be a goal for us.

The reason most goals don’t work is because they don’t take into account why we don’t already have what we’re aspiring towards and the elements that have been stopping us get there.

What I mean by this is that the reason people stop going to the gym after 2 weeks is often because they get bored, they can’t find the time to go, they find it too difficult. These are the problems you need to tackle and then the gym will follow suit.

For example there are three restrictions we have for going to the gym:

We find it boring – we’re not used to exercise and we don’t automatically see results.

We can’t find the time to go, eventually life gets in the way and we stop going to the gym as we argue we don’t have the time.

We haven’t exercised before and so it’s really hard to do an effective workout as we’re not quite as physically fit as we would like.

These are the reasons why goals don’t work and so in order to make your life more productive and achieve the things you want to achieve you need to break down the goals into processes or habits and achieve those first. Once you’ve done that it’ll be much easier to get to where you want to be.

“All who have accomplished great things have had a great aim, have fixed their gaze on a goal which was high, one which sometimes seemed impossible.”

Orison Swett Marden

If you want to make a change that is real and actually lasts, you need to condition yourself to changing your processes.

One of the problems with goals is it sets you at a lower rung than you’d like to be and frankly, this isn’t good for your mentality. When you set a goal you’re saying to yourself that you will only be good when you achieve the goal. While you’re achieving your goal, you’re effectively failing and this doesn’t end. Once you achieve the goal all you do is simply find a new goal to put in its place.

The thing about goals is they are not scalable. When you achieve one certain goal, you can’t automatically repeat the process for a different goal, because they’re all going to be unique.

This is why we advocate for creating processes and systems that work well for you. When you create a process for yourself, a better way to do something it can become habit. Once you’ve built these processes into habit they become part of who you are and how you work.

They are scalable, you can use it for other things as well.

Goals: Targets we set ourself, normally with no real idea how we can achieve it.

Processes & habits: Small, manageable things we change in our lives that lead to us becoming more productive.

So let’s pretend your goal was to become more productive in the mornings. Instead of saying that, why not look at finer details and work out what processes you would need to change in order to become more productive.

So you set yourself a system and you turn your system into a habit and in result you actually achieve your goal.

Goal: to become more productive in the mornings

Systems & processes that will help you get there:

  1. Eat a healthy breakfast every morning to give the brain energy
  2. Spend less time wondering what to wear
  3. Ignore e-mails and don’t touch phone for the first 30 minutes of waking up
  4. Go for a run in the morning to clear mind

Habits you will form in order to make it easier:

  1. Eat breakfast at the same time every morning whilst catching up on the previous days articles
  2. Choose the next days outfit the night before
  3. Spend the first 30 minutes of waking up meditating and thinking about the day ahead
  4. Leave running shoes by the door

As you can see, these small actionable systems and habits will all lead to you becoming more productive in the mornings, but because you think about it in a different light, the chance of you achieving it increases.

If you make a habit of leaving your outfit for the next day out and ready to put on the night before then in the morning you will spend less time flicking through your wardrobe wondering what you should put on that day, this in turn will already make you more productive in the mornings.

The important thing to learn is you’re already achieving your goal if you’re putting in time to change the way you do things with systems and habits.

Processes can take time to develop, it’s a hard task retraining your brain to work in a certain way, but once you’ve done it, it lasts forever.

The problem with goals is they are so big and it’s disheartening to know that you might not achieve your goal, despite the work you will be putting in. So work out what the processes are stopping you from achieving your goals and work on those first.

Small victories lead to big wins, always.