How are you?
If your first, knee jerk response was “Busy!” or “Crazy busy” or “Scary busy” then this interview is for you. My guest this week, Dr. Don Khouri, invites us to protect our “Yes.” Whether others are asking for a favor, offering an opportunity, or handing down a task, our bias is usually to say “yes!” Don suggests that before we give away a single “yes,” we need to ask ourselves some critical questions.
Join us as we discuss
- The five questions that we should ask before we say “yes”
- Why a default mode of “no” will actually make us more valuable collaborators and employees
- The transformation and ease that comes from being purposefully productive instead of busy
About the Guest:
Don Khouri coaches executives and business leaders who want to be more productive and profitable. He does this helping busy executives streamline their activities and better chose activities on which to focus their time and attention. He is the author of When to Say Yes, The 5 Steps to Protect Your Time. Dr. Khouri is known for his straightforward expertise when it comes to getting crystal clear on identifying which requests to accept, and which requests to say “no” to and reject. Through his coaching and training programs, busy executives are able to increase their productivity and focus, while eliminating the enormous volume of distractions that are part of being a business leader in today’s lightning-fast information age. Don has an extensive background in software development and has held several key positions at Fidelity Investments during his successful 21-year career. His leadership positions at Fidelity Investments include being Vice President of Software Development, where he headed global teams and complex multi-million-dollar programs. Don is a PhD in Human and Organizational Systems. He holds a master’s degree in Human Development, and an MBA in Organizational Behavior from Boston University. In addition, he earned a bachelor’s degree from Babson College, which has been voted the top school in the U.S. for entrepreneurship.
Connect with Don:
Connect with Amanda:
Pre-Order My Book: https://amandacrowell.com/great-work/
About The Host:
Dr. Amanda Crowell is a cognitive psychologist, speaker, author and coach changing our perspective on the world of work. It IS possible to do Great Work– launch a successful business, make a scientific discovery, raise a tight-knit family, or manage a global remote team– without sacrificing your health, happiness and relationships.
Amanda is the Author of the forthcoming book, Great Work: Do What Matter Most Without Sacrificing Everything Else, and the creator of the Great Work Journals. Amanda’s TEDx talk has received more than a million views and has been featured on TED’s Ideas blog and Ted Shorts.
Her ideas have also been featured on NPR, Al Jazeera, The Wall Street Journal, Quartz, and Thrive Global.
Sponsored By The Aligned Time Journal
The Unleashing Your Great Work podcast is sponsored by the Aligned Time Journal! The Aligned Time Journal is here to answer the question “But HOW?” How can we figure out what our Great Work is? How can we get started, stay with it, and finish our Great Work so it can go out in the world and have an impact?
Click here to learn more, and try it out for yourself!
For more information about the Unleashing YOUR Great Work podcast or to learn more about Dr. Amanda Crowell, check out my website: amandacrowell.com
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Welcome to unleashing your great work, a podcast about doing the work that matters the most to you. I'm your host, Dr. Amanda Crowell, a cognitive psychologist, coach, and the creator of the great work journals. Every week on this podcast, we are asking the big questions. What is great work? And why does it matter so much to us? What does it take to do more of your great work without sacrificing everything else? And how does the world change when more people are doing more of the work that matters the most to them. So whether your great work is building your own small business, or managing a remote team at a multinational company, you'll find insight and answers here. Welcome, everybody to unleashing your great work. I am so excited today to have Don quarry, a speaker, author and executive coach who inspires executives and business leaders who want to be more productive and profitable. He helps them achieve this by showing them how to streamline their activities, eliminate distractions, and better choose the activities on which they focus his book, when to say yes, the five steps to protect your time was published in September of 2021. And I have read it, it is very good. Don quarry previously held several key leadership positions at Fidelity Investments during his successful 21 year career. And he has a PhD in human and organizational systems. Welcome to the podcast, Don.Don Khouri:
Thank you, Amanda. Great to be here. I'm looking forward to a productive conversation. Say,Dr Amanda Crowell:
Let's for sure have a productive conversation. So Don, I, as I mentioned, I did read your book, I thought it was very good. I can't wait. Yeah, you're welcome. It's you know, it's always a good idea if you have read someone's book to tell them, because it sort of feels like, you know, you send it out into the world. And then you kind of wait. So I hope that I hope that lots of people after today, go and get your book and read it, because I really did think it was a very good book. So Dr. Cory, can you tell me a little bit about your great work?Don Khouri:
Yes, I would love to, and I'm looking forward to your book as well, which I understand is like imminently imminent. Coming out June 7, that's right, seven, that's a great day. So you know, I love helping people perform at their best. And as you read in my bio, I do that through speaking and coaching and training. But in particular, no matter what the delivery mechanism is, whether that's coaching or training or speaking, I help them by expanding on the work in the personal productivity space. So you know, this journey started for me. Many years ago, when I attended a seminar given by productivity guru, David Allen. At the time, the seminar was called Managing actions and projects map. And then it became managing accelerated productivity. And ultimately for the for your listeners that know this book, Getting Things Done, right. And so after that two day seminar, on a Friday afternoon, I was so eager to go back and implement what I learned I stayed late. This was early in my career, and I got really clear on my commitments, I cleared my desk, I created a system that worked for me. I think the only thing on my desk at that point was my inbox and a picture of my car,Dr Amanda Crowell:
and an exterior of your car. Yeah,Don Khouri:
before I wanted to say that was before I was married. My wife. In fact, it's funny, because when I was writing the book, I made a little comment about that. And I originally wrote in a picture of my wife, and then I thought, wait a second, I don't think so I wasn't even married that. So this, this system served me so well in my career leading global software development teams, because I was able to stay focused on the important work and eliminate the distractions. So I continued to study this space continue to do research in this space. And that's what you know, led to the book, when to say yes.Dr Amanda Crowell:
So I noticed in your book that you got a PhD, and it's not as though you got a PhD and then went and worked in software. You were in software for a while and you had already been to David Allen's map workshop. What drove you to go get a PhD?Don Khouri:
Well, there were three things actually. One is I wanted to continue to build credibility as a speaker and Coach and Trainer to is the personal accomplishment. But three also was feeling like there was Still this missing piece and all the personal productivity systems that are out there, that there was maybe something missing. And so I'm, you know, I'm kind of a geek about this stuff. And there's, you know, there's a whole shelf on my bookcase just dedicated to personal productivity and time management books. And the space I really wanted to understand was the mindset of the most productive people, when they evaluate a request for their time. And the thinking is, if we can really control, be good at that triage and control what's incoming, then we have a much more manageable list because the book was written and maybe some of your listeners fall into this space of having too much to do and not enough time.Dr Amanda Crowell:
Maybe, maybe one or two.Don Khouri:
I think it's a really small niche. But if there's anyone out there, then this could be a good way to get back to a manageable list.Dr Amanda Crowell:
So you mentioned that you were thinking there must be a missing piece to the puzzle. And did you find it? Is this it?Don Khouri:
I believe this is it. I believe if we can be more conscious and have the right mindset about evaluating requests for our time, then we say yes to the right thing. So when we say yes to the right things, then the rest is pretty obvious. We know when to say no. Because, guess what? I mean? That's what it's called when to say yes. Because we don't like to say no, we prefer not to say no, we associate more pain with saying no today than the potential pain of too much to do later.Dr Amanda Crowell:
Hmm, yeah. And what's this? So have you noticed in your own life a big difference, since you started to really focus instead on what am I going to say? Well, let me just back up and say, it sounds like it's like, instead of trying to find the one or two times when you're going to push back and say, I will not do that. The default is I probably am not going to do that. And I imagine that some of the work of this is setting expectations with everybody all the time, that your default is to not do things. And so I'm not your go to guy, right, I'm the one that you should come to, when it's really the right opportunity. And that itself feels like a big mindset shift for people. Because there's a very, like I, for example, have what I call a bias towards Yes, I'm like, but I want to because it's gonna be awesome. And in my own experience, like a whole chapter of the book that in fact, the chapter of the book is called do less, much, much less, because my own experience was exactly what you're describing. So this default of sort of expecting the answer to be no, and then choosing the times when the answer is yes. Feels like a huge, first of all, tell me am I am I understanding that correctly?Don Khouri:
Well, I really liked the way you frame it. I haven't framed it exactly that way. But yes, let's make our default. No. And when it's an amazing Yes, or a really calling for a yes, then you can identify that. But I love that chapter of your book, too, because one of the things I like to say is by doing less, we might actually accomplish more.Dr Amanda Crowell:
Yeah, I completely agree with that. And in fact, I find that what we it is all and how we're sort of understanding what we've accomplished, right? Like, what's more, and what's less if it is just bulk work, right? Like, how many things am I actually checking off my to do list, you can do more by doing more. But if what you actually care about is moving forward, the things that matter what I would call great work, which is the focus of this podcast, then you will do so much less of what matters, because you have occupied so much of your time with the stuff that just doesn't really matter. So it's really exactly what you sort of outlined in your book.Don Khouri:
I think the only way to do great work is to do focused work, do less work like Cal Newport calls a deep work, where you you're focused for large blocks of time on what is really important. So and that's kind of the distinction I'd like to make to between busy, which is checking off a whole lot of things, and being purposely productive, which is failing in control, being crystal clear on your goals, making progress on your most important goals. And, and I like this mindset shift too, which is investing your time conscious about how youDr Amanda Crowell:
write? Yeah, absolutely. So have you noticed in your coaching that you're doing Have you seen people go through transformational experiences where they were busy, and now they're not like what was that like for them? What did they discover?Don Khouri:
And this is one of the things I love about the space is seeing During this transformation, because I was speaking a couple of weeks ago, actually, in Miami in Miami, and one of the participants said, I just got so much clearer about where I need to focus and what my priorities are. And I got a bunch of other stuff off my plate that I was focused on that or even partially focused on that wasn't as important. So even like in a one hour speech, there was some transformation there that they got refocused. So.Dr Amanda Crowell:
And I'm sure part of that is that your message is actually very counterculture. To say you should do less is the opposite of everything everywhere. It's like, it's all about hustle. It's all about showing up early and staying late. And so I'm sure that when a message is so remarkably different from the default way that we live, even just exposure to it can be really transformational. So but tell me a story of somebody who you worked with in a longer term way, because I noticed that you've done quite a lot of executive coaching. So I'm sure some of this plays out in the longer on a longer trajectory.Don Khouri:
I'm thinking of a company that I worked with a few years ago, that was actually I was working with the CEO on the verge of going out of business, like he was really cashflow strapped. And we worked together for a couple of focus days, and transformed the way he was just managing his workflow, number one, and what he was focused on. And so we working together, built a plan for him to start focusing on what he was really good at, which was sales, he was very much a sales oriented CEO. And we got all the other stuff that he wasn't as good at. And then he didn't really like doingDr Amanda Crowell:
right, probably wasn't really contributing by doing it right,Don Khouri:
when we got that off his plate, and he focused on what he was really good at. And he didn't even have to hire more people, because he really wasn't in a position to do that anyway. But he did bring in his team to get that stuff off. And then he was focused on that he got clear with his creditors on how he was going to pay them back. And now he's, you know, multimillion dollar company. That's that, that has done well. So that I'd like to say, you know, it's it's he did the work. I wasn't anything magic magic. I did. But but maybe I'd like to think that that shift in focus. And saying yes to what he was really good at and saying no to things that others could do was an important shift for Yeah,Dr Amanda Crowell:
I'm sure it was. And then I noticed that, you know, the main thing that you discussed that he was doing was delegating. And I what as well, I was reading your book, I noticed that the fifth stage is really delegation. So can you talk to us a little bit about that? Because I think we all feel like if I don't do it, it's not gonna be done right? Or we feel like I don't have the money to delegate, or I don't have a team member to delegate to. Can you talk a little bit about? Because I do think it's a critical strategy for almost everyone. And yet, I bet you are very familiar with the pushback and the ways that people sort of resist delegation, what are those? And how do you suggest they sort of move through it?Don Khouri:
So it's it again, I think coming back comes back to mindset. And it is a shift of short term focus to a longer term focus. Yeah. But the so and I'll say longer term focus in two ways. Because the first way is the obvious way, which is I can get something off my plate. And that may take an investment of time, and the short term may actually take you longer to delegate it the first time than it would to do it yourself. And so the more senior people, which are the ones I spoke to, when I did this research, the C level executives, they're thinking about the longer term, how can I move this forward, so maybe the second time or third time or even the fourth time, I'm going to start seeing a payback of that investment and ROI of that investment? The the other long term thinking about this is was came as a little bit of a surprise for me and as a leader for many years, it probably shouldn't have been a big surprise. But they delegated that these most productive people. They delegate as an opportunity to grow someone else. So they're immediately thinking not only how do I get this off my plate so I can focus on more appropriate activities. They're thinking how can the other person grow as a result of this interaction? have you think about that then, and hey, we're in the business of people growth anyway, right? It's starts to be obvious to us, if we can get our leaders to think that way too, then you're surrounding yourself with people that you are even more of have more of an ability for you to delegate.Dr Amanda Crowell:
Yeah, that's a really, really cool mindset shift. I like that a lot. Because when we are fixated on our own experience, it feels like, I don't want to do this. So I must give this terrible task to somebody else, as opposed to, this is not the right thing for me to spend my time on. Who around me would enjoy it should know how to do it could use some support to become better at it. And then you stop feeling like such a jerk all the time, because you want to be the person that people value and want to work with. And now you start to see these as opportunities for someone else. I like that a lot.Don Khouri:
Yeah, and think about it this way, too. Because when do we feel the most fulfilled? I would surmise or advocate that it's when we're growing and learning, right? And so if we can get someone else give someone else that opportunity to to as well, hey, I've got a great opportunity for you. As opposed to like you said, I have this horrible task. IDr Amanda Crowell:
don't want to do you do? Right, that's a really, really good offer. Would you like to do this thing I've have no interest in? Yeah, I really like that. And there's another there's another layer to that where it's like some some tasks, let's be real. I recently was sending out a mailing and I needed addresses. And I needed somebody to go on the internet and scrape the addresses off the internet, right? Like, that's nobody's idea of a great time. And yet the person that I gave it to was like, thank you so much, I, I needed the money, I needed the opportunity. So like, in that way, I felt good about it anyways, but the other thing that I noticed, and I only in the time, we've been talking what have I been thinking about this? It also brought us back together her and I collaborating, right and building relationship. And then that's good for both of us, because now I have someone that I know, does careful work, and I'm more likely to give more work to her. And yeah, fairly interesting. I like that focus, like that thought of like moving out of the immediate and into a longer term thinking, which itself is a big mindset shift that probably across the board becomes more available when you're not putting out fires all the time.Don Khouri:
Yeah, for sure. So what do we usually say, we usually say we spend our time and like we spend money. But what are the most successful people do with their money, they don't spend it, they invest it, like Warren Buffett and other great investors, that's what they do with their money, they invest it. So if we can invest our time as well, and expect some sort of ROI, that ROI may be measured in different ways. Maybe you're gonna, like in the delegation example, you're gonna get an ROI of time back. In another example, maybe it's business development or, or in the, in the CEO of that failing company, it was the ROI of shifting the focus and investing his time in the right way was rebuilding the company.Dr Amanda Crowell:
Mm hmm. And you've been investing your time and helping people become more productive. So I'm curious, how has it been for you getting this message out into the world? Have there been? What have you had to overcome? In your own experience? Or in pushback that you get from sort of the market or the audience? What struggles have you had bringing this sort of great work to the world?Don Khouri:
Well, thank you for calling a great work. It actually got me in preparing for this thinking about is this really great work? Because we all have those. But yes, I like to think it is and the struggles I have with Well, first of all, I mean, let me say hey, it's something I struggle with too, which is part of doing the work is when when we're out there sharing it and teaching it. We it makes us better to it makes me better, just doing that. So it's an everyday struggle, because hey, I'm like everyone else I'd like to say yes to because there's a lot of fun, cool things to do out there. And I think if if there's one I can point to it is that belief that I need to do it all. And there's you probably know about this cognitive bias more than I do. We think we can do more than we actually can think it's going to take less time than we actually can. So so people are are thinking, well, there's nothing on my plate I can take off. Right? And especially people that are trying to maybe manage growing a family and kids and a career and and all of these different things they're they're looking at, well, there's nothing that can really move. So yes, sometimes we have to make some tough choices about where we're going to focus. And because we can't have I think you talk about this too, in your journal, right? Where you have where you have people rank the areas of their life, and you say no duplicates allowed, but we can't have six number one priority,Dr Amanda Crowell:
right? Yeah. Yeah, I hear that, I hear that because a lot of the conversations, it basically goes like this, you have to do less, I can't do less, but you must do less, but I can't do less. And it's like, okay, if you are going to argue for your limitations, you get to keep them. And that's like, is that harsh is that tough love? I don't know, I think it's just like, it's almost like physics, it's like it is the case, I spent so many years discovering efficiency, I too, started with David Allen and getting things done in inbox zero, and I became remarkably efficient. And every second of every day was still feel filled with things. And it just is the case, there will always be more to do than there is time to do it until you do what Don quarry is suggesting, which is, stop, take a bias towards no and start vetting the things that are being they are requiring an investment of your time. And I agree that people just until they stop and say, Okay, I'll find it somewhere. And that right there is like, that's like the peak of the mountain because the rest of it's like, they become heat seeking missiles. Like they're cutting everything they can because they realize how much freedom they have, and how much more fun their life is. Yeah.Don Khouri:
I mean, that that. I love that little interchange, you talked about, well, you have to do less? Well, I can't do less, you must do less? Well. Yeah, it's, it's the coaching question I would ask there is to how committed to change, are you? And cuz some people are and some people are, to some degree, but not completely. And so we can keep doing the same things. And and actually, what's the saying? It's like, if you keep doing the same thing, you're gonna get the same results? Well, I don't even think that's the case. I think if you're gonna keep doing the same thing, you're gonna get worseDr Amanda Crowell:
and worse and worse and worse. Yeah, I think that's a really good coaching question to ask. And I feel like, because my TEDx talk, and a lot of what I think about is like, there are these moments, they they feel like case, I have a dog, she's part Newfoundland, part poodle. And the new fee, part of her new feed dogs are sort of notoriously stubborn. And so when they don't want to move, first of all, they're enormous. Dogs are like the size of a horse. And if they don't want to move, you're not going to move them. We call those the new fee breaks. Everyone who has a new fee calls them the new fee breaks, it's not gonna happen. And I feel like there's this moment in people's lives. Everybody has them, where you reach the point where you're like, I'm not sure why but the new fee breaks are on for this, like, I just will not cannot, you're wrong. Something about this like, isn't doable for me. Those are the moments that I find most interesting. And I think some of it comes down to a commitment to change. Like you said, that's true. But I also feel like there's other coaching questions, too, that can be helpful when someone's like, No, I am committed to change. I don't know why I can't do this in questions about like, what are you getting from not doing it? You know, like, what are you? What are you worried you might acquire or have to handle or who I mean, the TEDx talks about, like the three things that keep us stuck in that spot? Like one is secretly deep down, you think you can't, like there's something about you that makes it impossible. One is like people like me, don't do this, and everyone's going to hate me. That's why I sort of call that one the everyone's going to hate me problem. If I tell my brother that I can't pick my mother up for church three times a week, he will hate me. And then there's just the like, there's really interesting questions that emerge out of like, do you want to do this? You know, are you holding on to all of this? Because what you say you're trying to move towards is actually not something you value. And that's when the questions really, I find get to the great work as opposed to the expectations Have you found this? Have you had this experience too?Don Khouri:
Well, I like what you say. Now, let me have an edit moment here. So so your first one is people are gonna hate me. The second one is that it's not really the work they want to do. Yeah. And I actually wonder if there's another version of that, which is you don't think you're capable of it? Yeah, that'sDr Amanda Crowell:
the third one. Yeah, I don't think I am capable people like me don't do things like this. And I don't want toDon Khouri:
Okay, got it. Got it. So and the so Okay, now we can get back and coming back in the piece around, what purpose is it serving is really important because it is serving a purpose. And that's not coming, like from a judgmental place. It's, it's serving some positive survival instinct of some kind, or, or, or some, you know, like, even checking email, which I don't like that term. Because check means you're not really going to do anything about it. But but we like to check email because we like to see that new big bold message come in, which is a dopamine hit. And maybe that maybe it's as simple as serving that with the distraction. Oh, interesting. But it is serving something. So if we can uncover that. And then the question, I guess, a great question you could ask, and maybe I'll start maybe I'll borrow it NAS to which is, how much do you consider this great work? What you're currently doing? Or what in it could be great. What in it? So maybe there's some exploration there to uncover that it already is great. We just have to look at a different way or the we can come to the realization that no, this isn't really great. There's something else, or something else that's going to, you know, like the bring communities together and have our unique point of view. That's what one of the things that really clicked with me is I think that makes this great work is no one else, at least that I've found talks about that evaluation process of this request for your time. Yeah, so plenty people talk about the importance of saying no, and plenty others talk about how to say no. But no one really talks about the process for saying yes, or saying no,Dr Amanda Crowell:
yes. And actually, why don't you just tell us the five steps of it? Because I think yeah, just because I think I was like, This is great. Like I what I like about it is that it's very tangible and practical, and you don't need more information to implement it. And then if people actually, obviously, we, you and I, and many of my listeners, I'm sure know, it's behavior change, that makes any difference at all, you can't think your way out of the life that you're living, you can only live your way out of it. So what I like about your book, especially these sort of five steps, which will tell us in one hot second, when I'm done talking, it's real, like you can actually implement it. Most books, it's like, and now in order to really implement it hire me, but no, your book is really like, no, really just do this. So tell us what are they?Don Khouri:
And we even have an implementation process. Right in the book. Yeah. So the so I'll do it with the five questions you can ask yourself when evaluating requests first, does it align with my roadmap? Now, of course, to answer that question, you need to have a roadmap. And just like a vision, yeah, a vision or a set of goals that are mapped out on a timeline that you know how you're going to accomplish. So if it does great, or if it even you know, if you wanted to modify or at least make a conscious decision that you're willing to modify your roadmap. Second is who is asking. And this is important, because what I found was with the most productive people that they have what I called a relationship hierarchy, where they will pay more attention to a request from person A than they will Person B or C, and understanding more consciously what that hierarchy is, can be really helpful. Third is, is it a quality request, meaning has the really has the person really thought through? It's respectful of your time, it's well thought out. It's crystal clear, that includes solutions. Have they have they done that? That's what makes a quality request. Fourth, is where does it fit on my priority list? So the most successful leaders that work for me, when I lead global software development teams when I had a new idea or a new project to bring to them, they would say happy to do that, Don, just where does it fit on my priority list? And they were effective because they had a priority. So we could look, we could look at it together, and decide where it fit on the list if it fit at all. And then you mentioned step number five, we talked a little bit about it, which is master delegation and ask us the question, of course is, who can I delegate to?Dr Amanda Crowell:
Yeah, you know, one of those songs along the way that I remember having like, oh, man, that's so good quality request. There's something about that, that is, you know, the the phrase people say, like, we teach people how to treat us. Like, if calm, people are constantly canceling on you, like, you're probably part of the problem saying, like, it's no big deal. And I was, like, people do what they feel like it's gonna be acceptable to you largely, we're all just kind of mirror neurons, right? Trying to fit the expectation. So the quality request, I feel like it's one of those things where, first of all, you're helping another person, be a better employee, and person and collaborator, by teaching them what a quality request is that you have done some of the thoughts, one of the things you mentioned was that it has a solution in it, don't just bring me a problem. Bring me a problem with at least one or two efforts at solving that problem. I think that's really interesting. And I have to assume that that alone could really change someone's inbound requests.Don Khouri:
Yeah. And this was pretty this is pretty consistent across the people I talked to where they're very happy to bounce a request back to someone say, I'm not really getting it or it's not clear, or have you really planned this out? Or could you bring back some solutions? Just feel free to bounce it back? In a polite way? Right away? We don't we don't want to create a bad relationships or enemies here. We want to do it in a nice way,Dr Amanda Crowell:
huh? Yeah, absolutely. Well, I like it. I like I said, I think it's a really interesting set of questions. And like any model that you take on one of my main areas in the book, at least, it's coming out of self expertise. And it's like, what, when you go out and read all these productivity books, it can start to feel like I have to do 777 things exactly right, in order to accomplish the goal. And I feel like in this, like any model, like some of these are going to, could really transform and change your life, like really asking for quality requests, really figuring out how to delegate like, these are, these are important things. Yeah. So my question for you is, as you're out in the world, doing this, helping people have these, like, what is the joy that you're getting from great work? Like, what do you love about it?Don Khouri:
Yeah, I, we touched on this a little bit, which is I love seeing this transformation in people and watching others improve their performance, which, again, that ties into one of your key parts of great work, which is, it happens in community. Yeah. And it happens together. So. And that's, of course, that came about many ways for me, which is just extracting all the information from all these great productive people. And then sharing it and seeing others transform, it's, I get great joy out of that. I also just love being on stage and sharing the ideas and, and getting people to react and evolve is just as part of that process, too. I'm still working on my first TEDx Amanda. So I'll let you know when that comes out. ButDr Amanda Crowell:
yeah, we'll be great. Yeah, that's so cool. So I think that the work that you're doing is definitely great work. I feel like it, you know, it is expressing your unique point of view, right? This is, from your lived experience, like you've gone off out into the world, like a like a knight on a quest, like, I'm gonna go figure out what is it? Like, how can we have all these productivity books and people are still so darn busy. So off, you went on your quest? It is really it puts you in community with people who are doing work that you value, right? You're helping people have better companies, better teams, better experiences in their careers. And I think that's, you know, absolutely something that puts you in contact with cool people doing cool things. And it's, you're learning new things. You're putting together a TEDx talk, you wrote a book, which is not nothing, a very good book. And it feels like as you're creating all these things, these impacts that you're having on people, you really are leaving quite a legacy behind you. So that when you're gone, your message remains. So I definitely What's that you say?Don Khouri:
I said, I hope so. Yes. No,Dr Amanda Crowell:
not you hope so. It is happening. You are doing it? Yes. It's very, very impressive. And before I ask you to tell us how we can learn more about you. I just want to point out one thing that I loved so much from your book, which is where and I think we should all we should all take this up, we should all join down on his quest. In this particular way, when somebody says, I know you're so busy, like, Oh, this is about to happen, I am definitely gonna say to people, well, what do you say? Dawn, you must be so busy.Don Khouri:
I say, you know, I'm purposely productive, that we talked about the what makes you purposely productive earlier feeling in control, investing your time making progress and your most significant goals? It's again, it's a mindset shift, because busy has a negative connotation, right? I'm just, it's like, heavy. I'm busy. I'm busy. I'm crazy busy.Dr Amanda Crowell:
I'm scary. Right? And yet, it's worn as a badge of honor.Don Khouri:
Sometimes it can be worn that way too. Yes, that, you know, I'm really busy.Dr Amanda Crowell:
I love that you're gonna send them an email saying I think I'm busy. But what is it about that what you know about my life that, but in what you pointed out was like, a lot of these are just their blanket emails, the assumption, the default assumption of the world in which we live, and that's why it's really a problem is that we are all maxed out. And if you're not maxed out, you must feel what, like, guilty? Or like, you're, you don't have enough hustle. You know, I feel like on a cultural level, you're really looking for a shift as well.Don Khouri:
Yes, yes. It's, it's well said and then, or they're feeling if they're not contributing or something. So yeah, if we can shift that, that it's okay. In fact, let's even go beyond Okay, not that it's okay. It's preferred not to be busy, because you are being purposely productive and productive. I even talk a little bit about reframing the word productive. Because if that means sitting down with your favorite people and watching TV or watching a movie, then that's a conscious decision of yours, then guess what that's productive. It doesn't mean that you need to be contributing, maybe contributing to your great work 100% of the time, but if you take that time for yourself, put your mask on first, then you're going to be much better contributing to your great work. So in a way that does contribute to your great workDr Amanda Crowell:
100%. I like to say that, in the in the face off, I feel like we're in a cultural face off between resilience and hustle. Right? Like, it's like, go go go versus I'm gonna stop. I put my mask on play with my friends. Think about what I want to do say no to a bunch of things be purposeful, and my productivity. I actually would say that it's your resilience, and all of those things that are infinitely more responsible for your great work than the hustle. For sure. That is the default mode. Yep. I love it. Well, Don, tell my listeners, tell our listeners how they can learn more about you what what can they do to have you come and speak at their company? How can they get a copy of your book, tell us everything.Don Khouri:
So to get in touch with me, you can go to my website, which is just simply Don quarry.com. I think we should probably spell that because it may notDr Amanda Crowell:
I will put it in the show notes. ButDon Khouri:
so do n is easy D and then Korea's K h o u r i on Korea, it's actually a Middle Eastern name. Quarry means priest in Arabic. Oh, interesting. But I promise that there are no confessions required are completely optional. Optional, is optional. So So you go to the website, all my speaker information is there and how to get in touch with me emails very easy dawn at dawn quarry.com. And to pick up the book, you can either go directly to Amazon or when to say yes.com With to spin you know when to to say yes.com.Dr Amanda Crowell:
Awesome. Well, I want to add my personal recommendation that you read this book is not just informative. It is actually very entertaining. And I don't know who liked it. I just had my book format. It's I think about this a lot. But the formatting of your book is really nice. Like it's nice on the eyes. Like look at this. It was really clean. And the little illustrations were gorgeous. I thought it was great. It's a really like a pleasure to read.Don Khouri:
Thank you. Thank you. It's actually amazing how much thought and planning goes into that which I'll take like zero credit for other than saying, Yeah, that looks good. But the great people and the great designers at page two, which is my publisher, they they just do amazing work and I was really intrigued by how much thought goes into the font and the spacing and the layout. And so your your last. ThankDr Amanda Crowell:
you. I'll send you a copy. Yeah, it's great. And so thank you so much for taking the time to come on here and share your wisdom with us. It's been a real pleasure.Don Khouri:
Likewise fantastic. You're amazing Amanda, I appreciate it.