I am fully convinced that with only one hour a day dedicated to reading, training and reflecting, taking advantage of the time, you can give a great boost to your learning, and with it to your professional development and personal brand.
The 5 hours rule

What differentiates the most successful people from the rest? Initially, some part of the research in this regard revolved around the characteristics of the great profesionals: what they were like, what traits and personalities they had. Over time, studies began to focus more on how they behaved than how they were. Most of these studies analyze their actions, their behaviors, and are based on identifying what they did differently and what could bring them notable differences in performance compared to others.

The American Writer Thomas C. Corley, in his outstanding book “Rich Habits: The Daily Success Habits of Rich Individuals” explains the result of 5 years of research analyzing the daily habits of 177 millionaires. One of the most prevalent habits among these millionaires is what Corley explains as “The 5-hour rule”. This rule represents a habit that most really successful people have in common (people like Bill Gates, Elon Musk, Jack Ma, Dan Gilbert or Mark Cuban…). While the term of “The 5-hour rule” was not created by Corley but by entrepreneur Michael Simmons. Simmons states that the first to implement this rule was Benjamin Franklin who also coined it with this name.

This simple, but powerful rule, consists of dedicating at least one hour a day (on weekdays) to some learning method. This common characteristic among these brilliant professionals is based in the idea of learning a little every day. In what is known as “deliberate learning practices”. That is, active and quality time to train and reflect on your learning and the challenges you have. And for this, the most successful people bet on reducing the time they spend watching television or in other activities that do not involve clear learning. I AM FULLY CONVINCED THAT ONLY ONE HOUR A DAY (BUT EVERY DAY) CAN GIVE A BIG BOOST TO YOUR LEARNING.

Here are some ideas so that you can incorporate these deliberate learning practices into your daily life and thus develop professionally.

  • Read: reading is undoubtedly one of the best habits for your personal development. Look for those books that motivate you, that can help you in your personal or professional challenges. It is a great habit that, in addition, will greatly improve your communication skills, your creativity and will also have benefits on your well-being.
  • Training: you have at your disposal many forms of training and education (many of them free or at very low costs) to train you when, where and how is convenient for you. Online courses, videos on YouTube, platforms such as Coursera, Linkedin Learning … Surely you will discover many options to learn in the field in which you want to improve.
  • Get the most out of your time: as your time is limited, one of the most important keys to learning is to take advantage of the time you spend in other activities. Think how you can listen to audiobooks, podcasts … or watch videos while practicing sports, walking the dogs, traveling or commuting. In this way you will get the most out of your time, you will learn a lot and you will also make the activity you are doing (sport, walking, driving …) much more enjoyable.
  • Reflect: within these 5 hours, it is also important to take time to think, to reflect. Assess the challenges you have, think about how you can manage them. Most professionals are so busy “doing” that they don’t have time to “think”. With what I also recommend that you think and reflect, it will surely be worth it.

So if you want to enhance your personal development, bet on The 5-Hour Rule. Because like Benjamin Franklin said “Education is the investment with the greatest returns”.

Xavi Roca

I am Talentist, I help organizations, managers and professionals to achieve high performance through enhancing their leadership and personal brand. I am passionate about leadership, high performance team management and Personal Branding, and I have dedicated my professional career to helping companies and professionals develop and enhance their talents and strengths to achieve their maximum development and performance.

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