Chris Sparks is a former professional poker player and currently a productivity coach. He joins Connor on the podcast to share his guide to productivity.

Chris is a super insightful guy, and someone you should listen to when it comes to productivity.

His Defining Moment

Not one to live a standard life, Chris came into professional poker almost by accident. He had finished his degree, and having always loved the idea of making television ads, he planned on taking a position with Ford in Detroit.
As the luck of timing would have it, this was in 2008, right when the financial crisis hit. His job waited in the balance. While the government and auto industry negotiated a bailout, Chris hung out and waited.
He’d played poker during university, so he decided to start playing again while waiting in Detroit. Soon he was making more money playing online poker than he ever would have in his job. This was the beginning of his poker career.
Chris has countless powerful insights into productivity, below we’ll touch on a few of them.

Leaning the Ladder on the Right Wall

Most people think of productivity as a series of tips and tricks to master, but Chris points out that the number one productivity hack is to first of all do what you’re best suited to and which you love doing the most.

Follow Power Laws

In seeking to maximize productivity there are activities with diminishing returns and those that follow a power law distribution. You should seek to avoid diminishing return activities and maximize activities that follow power laws.

Understanding Opportunity Costs

Everything you do comes at the expense of every other thing. When you say yes to one course of action you’re saying no to the entire field of other possible actions.

The Cost of Doubt

Thinking in terms of opportunity cost can create doubt. But doubting yourself constantly is a recipe for failure. Even when the opportunity you’re pursuing is a good one, you’ll self-sabotage when clouded by doubt.

Set up Experiments

The way to overcome the crippling effect of doubt is to set up small experiments. Instead of constantly wondering if you’re doing the right thing, choose to act as though you’re doing exactly the right thing for a period of time.
Write down your assumptions about the results this course of action will bring. Then update your assumptions over time.
This kind of purposeful experiment can quickly bring you in alignment with reality. You’ll soon know if you’re doing the right thing and will be far more productive.

So Much More

Chris is a rising star. He is full of incredible insights, and this podcast is guaranteed to blow your mind. What’s mentioned here is only a tiny bit of the insight he provided.
Listen to this episode.

Guest Bio — Chris Sparks

Chris is a business coach for top performing entrepreneurs, helping them build the systems and habits to maximize their time, energy, and focus towards building their business and designing their personal lives. He regularly writes about personal effectiveness and transformation on his blog and leads workshops to organizations about productivity. As a former professional poker player, he was ranked as one of the top 20 online players in the world. As a growth marketer, he successfully helped several early-stage startups reach scale through analytics optimization and cross-channel customer development. In his spare time, Chris loves traveling, photography, and comedy — visiting 65 countries and performing at the Magnet Theater and the Comedy Cellar in NYC.
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More on

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10 Strategies for Turning Obstacles Into Opportunities
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Editing & Mixing by: Aaron Johnson