Reading time: 10 minutes
Processing time: 30 minutes + some time in the future


To achieve more satisfaction, it makes sense to assess how much trouble or joy things in your life actually cause you. Here too, the 80/20 principle has proven its worth. According to this principle, 80% of your joy results from only 20% of things in your life. Simultaneously, you can reduce 80% of your anger by changing or eliminating only 20% of your things.

Note:  20% of customers generate 80% of sales. This insight is always sobering and extremely helpful: If you significantly reduce the energy and resources you have put into the remaining 80% and invest in the 20% of top customers, you will generate substantially more turnover with much less work. Also, it is often the smaller customers who cause disproportionately more toil and trouble.

Here are a few examples:

  • 20% of the products are responsible for 80% of sales. Here, too, it’s worth taking a closer look to see if the product portfolio can be significantly streamlined so that you can then concentrate on more profitable products. This reduces complexity – both for the supplier and for the customer.
  • 20% of the employees are responsible for 80% of the result. Everyone who works in a large company knows this experience. There are often a few who perform disproportionately well and many who more or less serve their time.
  • There are countless other examples: 20% of the shares in a portfolio are responsible for 80% of the return; 20% of cities have 80% of the total population as inhabitants, etc.

So, and now we come to your task for today:

Sit down and think about the areas of your life where you can apply the 20/80 rule. Where does a small part of things make up a large part of the value for you? Perhaps it’s a small number of friends who really give you a lot of pleasure? It’s a small number of things you buy that make up the largest part of your satisfaction through consumption?

Write these points in your notebook. Then, investigate what you could do to focus only on the 20% that provides 80% of the benefit, leaving out the rest if necessary.

The second part of the task:

In the future, focus on the 20%. If you are doing something (e.g., writing a text, building something, keeping the flat nice, etc. ) and the result feels “just about good enough,” ask others for feedback and believe them when they say “yes, that’s enough” or “that’s good enough.”

Why is this exercise important? Your goal is to work independently, be self-determined, and have enough time for your private life. Don’t just get a (new) hamster wheel! It’s key that you focus on the critical and essential things and that you are effective.