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Book Review

High Performance Habits, Brendan Burchard

In High Performance Habits (HPH) Brendan Burchard set out with a mission - to help his coaching clients with real, practical actions that would help them to achieve high performance. As a performance coach, Burchard used his access to top performers to set out to understand what they did differently. He found that - "success is not achieved by a specific type of person but rather by people from all walks of life who enact a specific set of practices."

What sets this book apart from other 'how to achieve success in your life' books is the size and detail of the first-hand research that Burchard and his team conducted. They created initial research surveys which went to Burchards following of over half a million across social media and newsletter platforms, they tested their theories in a pilot study on over 30,000 people from 195 countries and conducted one-on-one interviews with thousands of high performers.

This is what they found. High Performers, regardless of personality, age, industry or experience show high correlation for the following six habits:

1. Seek clarity on who you want to be, how you want to interact with others, what you want, and what will bring you the greatest meaning. As every project or major initiative begins, you ask questions such as "What kind of person do I want to be while I'm doing this?" "How should I treat others?" "What are my intentions and objectives?" "What can I focus on that will bring me a sense of connection and fulfilment?"
2. Generate energy so that you can maintain focus, effort, and wellbeing. To stay on your A game, you'll need to actively care for your mental stamina, physical energy, and positive emotions in very specific ways.
3. Raise the necessity for exceptional performance. This means actively tapping into the reasons you absolutely must perform well. This necessity is based on a mix of your internal standards and external demands. It's about always knowing your why and stoking that fire all the time so you feel the needed drive or pressure to get at it.
4. Increase productivity in your primary field of interest. Specifically, focus on prolific quality output (PQO) in the area in which you want to be known and to drive impact. You'll also have to minimize distractions (including opportunities) that steal your attention from creating PQO.
5. Develop influence with those around you. It will make you better at getting people to believe in and support your efforts and ambitions. Unless you consciously develop a positive support network, major achievements over the long haul are all but impossible.
6. Demonstrate courage by expressing your ideas, taking bold action, and standing up for yourself and others, even in the face of fear, uncertainty, threat, or changing conditions. Courage is not an occasional act, but a trait of choice and will.