Make It

The Simple Trick Steve Jobs Followed to Be ‘Most Productive,' According to His Former Executive Assistant

Justin Sullivan | Getty Images

As a former executive assistant to late Apple founder Steve Jobs, Naz Beheshti got an up-close view of what it took for the tech CEO to be successful.

In addition to prioritizing his well-being by exercising regularly and meditating daily, Beheshti, who is now an executive wellness coach and founder of the corporate wellness company Prananaz, says Jobs also was "extremely efficient and productive because he worked on his energy management and not necessarily time management."

"Yes, it's good to manage some of your time," the author of "Pause. Breathe. Choose: Become the CEO of Your Well-Being," tells CNBC Make It. "But to optimize your day and be most productive and not fall into the productivity trap, you have to manage your energy."

Executive wellness coach Naz Beheshti.
Photo credit: Naz Beheshti
Executive wellness coach Naz Beheshti.

A productivity trap, Beheshti describes, is "when we're just constantly chasing more hours in the day" and "wearing our lack of sleep like a badge of honor."

"The way some people do it, even my clients when they first come to me, is they say, 'Oh, I only slept two hours.' Or 'I pulled an all-nighter because I needed those extra hours in the day to be more productive,'" she explains. "But is your quality of work productive and up to par during those hours where you are supposed to be sleeping and rebooting your body and mind? Typically it's not because you're not performing at your best when you're exhausted."

To avoid this trap of working around the clock, Beheshti suggests managing your workload the way Jobs did by "looking at your day and defining or identifying what parts of your day you have the most energy."

"Do the things that you typically procrastinate on, or that are challenging or that you don't typically find as inspiring when you have the most energy and focus on optimizing your day based on your energy rather than the time," she says. "Because we all have the same number of hours in the day, right? But this is why some people get a lot more done in a day than someone else does."

This "important shift" from time management to energy management is what Beheshti says she advises all of her clients to do as they work towards managing their stress and overall well-being.

"Your well-being is really about taking empowered action," she says. "It's your choice to become the CEO of your well-being. And, when you are the CEO of your well-being, you show up as your best self in all areas of your life."

Sign up now: Get smarter about your money and career with our weekly newsletter

Don't miss: Steve Jobs’ former executive assistant on ‘a big misconception’ about Jobs as a leader

Copyright CNBCs - CNBC
Contact Us