Michael Yeung on Clarity, Power & Follow-through
All right. So today, on the entire life series, I have Michael Yeung, and he is calling in today from Hong Kong. It's actually 10 o'clock tomorrow there, and I'm up in park city Utah right now enjoying the cold, snowy weather. A bit of a change from sunny Southern California there. But Michael, why don't you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Get to know Michael
I noticed that you were posting on Facebook, and you were really positive. And I just loved what you had to say. I loved your energy. So I invited you onto the podcast here. So tell us a little bit about yourself.
Sure. So first of all, thank you so much for having me, and yeah. Greetings from Hong Kong. So, where should I start?
Let's yeah. So, in a nutshell, Just to give you a 30-second elevator pitch of what I do. I am a productivity and performance coach as well as a business consultant. And basically, what I help my clients with is, or let's say what my vision and mission is for a business, is to help client-based or service-based entrepreneurs to create the life and business they desire and deserve.
So how we do this is that we basically introduce and coach them through a blend of high-performance and business strategies to allow them to scale up their revenues, scale up their impacts while scaling up their time freedom and life balance. And it really all comes down to our ability to build our business, or our life rather than our life around our business, which is something that we're all prone to.
And really, that brought me to you eventually, because everything comes out of clarity because the more clear we are and the more specific we are to what we want to achieve, the more likely we are to achieve it.
Absolutely 100%. I knew that there was going to be a good connection there. So how do you go about getting clarity for yourself, and also, how do you help your clients get clarity?
Sure. So basically, what I do for myself as what I help my clients do, it's more or less the same because I basically introduced them through strategies that I've gotten from my own personal experiences, as well as what I've learned all the time and distilled to a way that's easily applicable or practical for my clients as well.
Michael on Clarity
So basically, what I do when it comes to clarity, really is to start with the vision of what I have for my life. That was my purpose and also my 'why,' which is hugely important for anyone who's basically self-driven and who is basically in entrepreneurship. And what we do here is that we align our vision for our life with the vision and mission of our business.
Because as the saying goes, life is too short to be working in a business that we don't like that doesn't serve our life and our purpose.
Yes. Hundred percent.
And afterward, when it comes to seeking clarity after we go ahead with our vision- so here's the thing I want to basically just touch upon with your audience. It's the difference between our vision and a goal.
Yes. Tell us!
Yeah. It's like the big picture. It's less vague as there's less specificity in it, but what it gives you is a meaning, and it gives you a feeling for it; it should force you to like a North star.
But a goal is something that's more process-driven, it's more tangible, and there's a set of timeline constraints where we get there. So basically, what we would do here with our clients as we go through this strategic process is to first define a vision. Define our 'why' and distill it into milestones starting with what we call a 90-day goal', because as research has shown and with any- I've read a lot of research journals when it comes to this. From psychology and from a strategic standpoint, 90-day intervals are where we are able to basically be most motivated and be most driven along the way. And we distill everything into their 90-day goal.
And basically, we adjust and rebuild our milestones along the way. Because visions change, they expand because clarity comes with action. And goals are where we allow ourselves to bridge the gap between where we are and what we want to be.
That's awesome. Yeah, absolutely. And in EntireTask, we call those 90-day goals 30 K, or within three months, basically. You can think of today as a kind of like on the ground, right? We're on the ground; we're working hard, right? A 10,000-foot view is a week. A 15,000-foot view is a couple of weeks. A 20,000-foot view is a month. And then our 30,000-foot view is that 90-day timeline that you're talking about there. So yeah, that's how that relates back inside of the EntireTask. And so, you know, I'm curious, I didn't ask you at the very beginning, what got you into coaching in the first place? How did you end up here?
Hmm, that's a great, great question.
So, first off, my personal development journey began when I moved from Hong Kong to the UK as a foreign student, when I was 18 years old. And that's where I basically stumbled upon the world of personal development. And I was shocked. I'm like, Wait. There's like, I've been learning about how to study. I've been learning about how to, like, basically train my body with fitness because I'm a huge health and fitness workout guy as well.
But then I'm like; there's actually a way for you to train up your life and your mind? And everything that you do? I'm like, where's all this in school? And afterward, I'm just like, yeah, I got to get into this. And it really compelled me because I had a lot of insecurities, and I had a degree of social anxiety, perfectionism, and a lot of fear basically installed within me because I grew up with a background where you've got to get A's or else you're going to be a failure.
That's why I got into- yeah- and everything that is along the lines of that. And basically, afterward, I started, like it ignited the entrepreneurial spirit in me. So I started off basically in the field of e-commerce. I was selling things on Amazon, also different things online, but then I knew nothing about the importance of productivity and clarity.
All I had was a vague goal. All I had was some scattered strategies and basically a mile-long to-do list that I kept on pushing back. And I was working on everything at once and all the busy work along with the workplace that I had just so like, basically just for me, my background is with veterinary medicine, and I had to do all of these work placements.
I had to basically study a long time, and we'd go through like 10-hour workdays—a lot of stuff along with building my own business on the side. And eventually, it got to a point where I was so burnt out I almost basically went into very, well, potentially fatal accidents, like dozing off at the wheel going 80 miles on a highway.
So that's where I woke up. I'm like; I have the mindset, I'm motivated. I have the strategies, but I need a way for me to organize my thoughts, organize my task, organize my milestones to actually allow myself to know exactly what to do and when. And how to self-regulate for high-performance so that I can able to basically become the person who's able to wield the sword. That being said, the knowledge I have, to get a result.
That's great. That's great. And so that kind of brings us to power, right? Like how do you find within yourself the power to continue on after you've got that clarity? Right? And sometimes there are days when you're just like, 'Oh God; this is not going the way that I wanted it to.' You know, how do you find the willpower to carry through? So that's like the initial power and then the willpower to keep continuing on. Tell us about that.
Michael on Power
Hmm. That's a great question. So basically, what a lot of people would likely get hyped upon is the need for motivation. But motivation is short-lived. It comes and goes and, if we are only able to work and perform as our best self when we are motivated, then our progress and our performance in our business will be sporadic at best.
So, what we really need is to tap into our inner drive, which is more an unlimited source as long as we're clear again on what we wanted to achieve.
It does. It really comes back to that 'why,' doesn't it?
Yeah, exactly. Exactly. If there's no reason for us to do something, or if that reason is not strong enough, we simply won't bother, especially when things get hard.
And, you know, that's an interesting thing. That's something that I built into EntireTask as well. Is that ranking system with the algorithm, right? Because that really helps people understand that you're working on the things that are most- that you told the system are most important to you. And so, I was talking to a guy the other day; actually, I said, here's the backlog. And the backlog is all of the things that you didn't do on time.
Right? Because things come to us through time, like something that might be on the 90 days, right? In two months from now, it won't be in the 90 days anymore. It will it now be in our 20 K. Right? And then in a couple of weeks from then it'll be in our 15 K, and then all of a sudden it'll be our 10 K. And then it's like right up there in our week,
and if we don't get it done, it just ends up in the backlog. But I told him it's not a bad thing; because, if it ends up there, it probably really wasn't that important in the first place. And that's why it ended up there, and sometimes we just have to let it go, right? Because we can only do so much, but also we can look in there and maybe think about, how can we delegate something?
You know, where I can't physically do all of those things. You know, how can I get somebody on my team, somebody who's part of our project or whatever, to help us to get us where we want to go. Right?
Absolutely because here's the thing. We, as entrepreneurs, love to explore ideas.
We love to go on tangents. We love to do everything at once, but, what basically EntireTask really, like, I will say the most, one of the most powerful things I can see with EntireTask is the ability on how it allows you to organize your priorities. It's not about our ability to cram as much stuff in our schedules. Productivity really is about allowing ourselves to maximize the quality of our tasks and the quality of how we use our time. So we just not only get stuff done, but we're able to achieve the right outcomes with the amount of time possible.
Yeah yeah, absolutely. You know, and that's the thing, is that, for me even- because I'm kind of just like you explained. I get excited about something, and then I'm like, I'll do that right now.
But I've actually since I developed EntireTask; I've been really good about putting it in EntireTask and letting it tell me when I'm supposed to do it. Because there's something else that's more important, right? According to what I told the system. So the algorithm helps me to kind of throttle myself back so that I am really working on what I told it was most important.
And I find by doing that, I'm able to achieve so much more, so much faster, of what I really want to achieve. Right? Like a couple of months ago, I was thinking; it was like four months ago now, I was thinking about going to Puerto Rico to check it out. Right? And that was like a year goal. It was a year.
It was like way out there. And then, all of a sudden, boom, I was in Puerto Rico three months ago. Like, I can't even believe I'm here, but it focused me on the things that I said were important. Right? And for me, it was deciding where we want to live long term. That's really important to me right now to decide, you know, right now, where are we going with this?
And so I love that. Speaking of, you know, your priorities and things like that, and things that help you. How do you follow through now that you have the power and now you have the clarity? What do you do? What processes do you kind of go through either with yourself or with your customers? Make sure that they followed through because that's one of the things, that is, so often, you know... Like I know, Grant Cardone's big event is coming up this weekend. Right? And there's a lot of people that get really excited about it and do nothing.
Michael on Follow-Through
Yeah. So, yeah, like that's something that I can go off forever with, but just to basically like, just adding on to what you've said, just now with priority is that, when we got in the weeds and when things get hard, it's so easy for us to basically forget why we are doing these things in the first place. And if we don't have those priorities laid out, just like basically what you do, what will help you with EntireTask is that, when things get hard, we tend to look into different ways and pivot towards different directions. Because logically, humans tend to simply take the routes of least resistance, but that's where we start hunting on basically shiny objects. That's where we pivot towards, like heading in the wrong direction. And procrastinate by doing a lot of busywork that's more comfortable versus doing uncomfortable work that brings progress.
And that's the thing, that like moonshots inside of the EntireTask, we have two objects that are really important. You have moonshots.
Some people call them big, hairy, audacious goals. That's BHAG's. Some people call it that, you know, I call them moonshots. And then we have milestones, right? And so often, people kind of get off course with things, and then they wonder why they're not achieving what they want to achieve, but moonshots are hard.
Do you know? And you know, to do those things that are those big goals that are really scary and really kind of confrontational to you, you know, to step up to the plate and get in the game, right? Swing that bat. You know, you're going to strike out a lot. You're going to have a lot of failures, you know, like Elon Musk. He's got rockets blowing up all the time, but he's got, not even a moonshot. He's got a Mars shot. Maybe we should change the name of it, huh?
When we start colonizing Mars, like yeah, Moonshot would become Mars shot, let's put it on our radar.
Maybe I'll change the name of it to a Mars shot instead.
People keep on expanding their visions. So yeah, just going back into how we are going to obviously implement and bring our outcomes to become a reality.
So really, a lot of things come back down to, again, clarity because there's clarity towards our outcome goals, but there is also clarity towards our action goals. And as you said before, like yeah, people go into events and consume a lot of knowledge, but if they aren't able to implement all those knowledge, then it's going to be shelf help instead of self-help either in business or in other areas of life. So what we really need you to do really is to break down exactly what to do and when. Because I coach my clients all the time, when the quantity of the decisions goes up, the decisions' quality goes down. For example, if all your willpower and all your brainpower are being spent on: should I do this? Should I do that? Or should I do this? Or should I do that? Then when it comes time to actually put in the work, you'll get so distracted, you'll get so scattered, and you just can't help but not follow through.
Yeah. That's one of the reasons that I created the algorithm, right? Because in this day and age, like all of our old systems... You know, I loved GettingThingsDone. I loved that way back in the day, but I'm a technical person. Right? And I love computers. And I'm like, but I don't want to process these goals. I want to tell a system one time, or randomly when I change my mind about what's important, I tell the system that, and then I want it to figure out what I'm supposed to do next. So that then I don't have to look at this wall of tasks and go, Oh my God, what should I do? Right. I want the system to say, Hey, this is the most important task, according to you, what you told us, right? And, that just... for me, it's so helpful because then I just go in, and I've got this one little task to worry about rather than, you know, we say that old saying which God, I don't want to eat an elephant, but you eat one bite at a time.
Right? Like you break it down into smaller pieces, smaller pieces, smaller pieces so that we can move forward with it. Rather than being so overwhelmed by everything that we've got to do.
Absolutely. Absolutely. And yeah, because everything really comes out chunking. Like the more, we are able to reconceptualize ourselves going through a task and achieving it, the more likely we are to achieve it.
Because it's the analogy whereby if you can see the finish line, you'll be way more motivated to cross it. Versus, you're simply running, and you have no idea whether you're even running in the right direction.
Yeah. Yeah. That's why like, whenever anybody goes into the app, I encourage them, and we're actually making guides.
I was working on the guides today. And so let's like a 10-day meditation schedule where you go in and you have a look at your vision board that you've created. And you look at that for ten days. And we're even thinking about maybe either giving people the opportunity to upload music or, to you know, get music or whatever so that they can like have a meditative moment so that they can just look at their vision board and imagine themselves there.
Right. But it's not just about, and this is what we're finding in science, is that: visualizing is phenomenal. It's really, really important, but you have to rub it up against reality, right? Like, okay, now I've visualized. Now I have to do something about it. And I actually told the story a while ago about my dog.
I don't know if I told you about it, but when I was eight years old, I wanted to have a show dog, right? I wanted a show-dog so badly, but I didn't want to show dogs.
I wanted one, but I didn't want to show him. And so I eventually forgot about that goal. You know, I forgot about it. The universe did not forget about it because 48 years later, my dog breeder calls me up after I purchased another dog, like the year before. Dog breeder calls me up and says, Hey, do you want to have Coco's brother?
I've kept him for this past year, and I've been championing him. And now he's in third, three-time international champion. And I want to retire him, and I really want you to have him. I want him to be with Coco. And I was like universe; you were listening to that? But that's the thing. It's like the universe had to figure out 48 years.
It had to figure out to get me that without me working on it. Right? Yep. But had I worked on it; I probably could have had it within a year. Right?
Basically, really like there's some, like, obviously, there's something called, like something that's just meant to happen, when is the time. But at the same time as high achievers, we've got to control what's under our control.
A lot of things, when it comes to productivity, really is about increasing the speed of which we are able to achieve certain outcomes. And more clear, we are on exactly how can take action towards achieving it, then the more ownership and more control we have towards our life, our business, and how our small world is going to look like.
Exactly exactly. We have to work towards it.
Exactly because yes, a lot of people love to do like the law of attraction, manifestation and love the spreading the power of it. That's then until we're able to fall through with the law of action. The law of manifestation or law of attraction will not workout. And that's why it's so important, especially when your business is getting bigger and bigger, bigger, and your options and your to-do list gets longer and longer, longer, you've really got to reach a point whereby you can choose you're clear on, your decisions are the best decision that you are making. Because when I was first starting out, when I was doing on a business from the ground up, all I had to do was like a few action steps every single day. And a paper journal can completely work for that.
But now that you have a team, now that you have different like you have different offers you push out, now that you have different marketing plans. And now that you have different projects that you're working on at the same time, not only just for yourself, but also for a team, you've got to know which one comes first and which one comes after.
And after that, really try to work on everything at once. This really reminds me of one of my clients. Like she's an amazing high achiever. She's got ambitious goals, but when I looked at her daily calendar, I'm like, wow, you've got 15 tasks. They want to complete it today. Just with the transitions that you're making throughout the day, you're wasting at least five hours because studies have shown that in her transition, we actually need to take 20 to 30 minutes to actually get back into the zone.
So I'm like, why not choose which one to get done first.
That's so true. And that's one of the reasons that inside of EntireTask, I created those areas of your life, right? Because I was listening -Elon Musk, he kind of chunks- time blocks things out, right? So he'll work in one company for a day, and he'll do a certain type of work.
And so, for instance, engineering, right? Versus sales and marketing. And as a CEO, you've got to do both things, right? But engineering's a very different mindset than sales and marketing. And so it's really nice inside of EntireTask to be able to say, Hey, what are all of my engineering type of things, right? Inside of EntireTask, we would call that production.
What are all my production things, or what are all my promotion things? So that, then you've got that context, that thought inside your mind. Okay, I'm just working on these types of activities for a couple of hours, and then maybe I might make a transition into those other things. Also, another thing that we're finding is people are generally only able -high achievers can manage about five things a day, low achievers, about three things, right? 15 things a day that's either mania...
Or you're just basically shooting yourself in the foot.
Exactly. Or you need to hire somebody else and start delegating stuff, you know?
Exactly exactly. So many people just want to do, do do, and do. They want to do everything at once, thinking that more is more. But sometimes, all you need to do is just simplify, trim out the fat, and focus on what really moves the needle.
What I always talk about with my clients is to be ruthless, cutting out the trivial many and focusing on the vital few. There's an 800 rule. There are lots of other theories that you've got to just, yeah. That's what is our focus.
Absolutely. Well, it's been so awesome having you on today, and I'd love to know what your gift for our listeners is.
Awesome. So this is something that I don't basically give out often, but here's my invitation for your audiences because I believe that, since our basically our missions align so much with each other, I think they will love the gift. So I have this free Facebook community for entrepreneurs, just for them to optimize their productivity and performance.
So the Facebook group name is called productivity and performance for coaches and consultants. And obviously, there's also a group for anyone, any high achiever who wants to upgrade their life, their business, and achieve more with less. So what happens in this group is that not only does it offer you a community to network with other high achievers and also service-based or client-based businesses, but it also hosts value-based posts as well as weekly live trainings for free.
Designed to help you guys do more with less and achieve more by doing less and also to really tap into the arch of addition by subtraction. And there's also a whole library of units and resources designed to basically allow you to scale your business or to scale up your time freedom.
The addition by subtraction. I love that.
Time is finite, but the quality of our work is infinite. We can always increase our efficiency, productivity, and return on time invested. So if you guys want to check it out, the website is called www.productivityandperformance.net.
So basically, one word, productivity and performance dot net. And if you go on this website, it can link you directly into our Facebook group, and you can simply go ahead and come join us and come join our mission.
Perfect. I'm going to jump in there for sure. I'll make sure that we put it down below this post, and thank you so much for coming on the podcast today.
And I look forward to hearing some of your live training in your group. There.
Absolutely. And again, just think of so much for having me, and yeah, I just want to say, well, if you're not getting EntireTask yet, go check it out because yeah, it's awesome. It will change your life just with what we've gone through before. Everything starts with clarity, and as long as you're able to bridge the gap between where you are and where you want to be by prioritizing your tasks and know exactly what to do and when it's going to be a matter of time before you can achieve whatever you want.
Absolutely. Absolutely. All right. Well, you have an awesome day there in Hong Kong, and I'm going to go take a little walk in the snow with my little puppies.
Sounds good. Sounds good. 📍