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WC 022: The Rule of Thirds

Phil Powis
Phil Powis
6 min read

This week I've been playing with an idea that keeps popping up in my awareness.

The Rule of Thirds.

It's the idea that with anything we are experiencing, creating, or doing; perhaps we can reduce our efforts by a third in the name of simplicity and ease.

It came to me spontaneously while packing for my time in Costa Rica. I wanted to avoid checking luggage and was trying to figure out how to reduce my footprint.

I asked myself this question:

For each category of things I'm bringing, could I get by with ⅓ less?

1/3 fewer tech cables

1/3 fewer contact lenses

1/3 fewer t-shirts

1/3 fewer socks

You get the idea.

This exercise provided me with a feeling of lightness, having reduced the complexity of my packing.

Revisiting my packing job and forcing this constraint while maintaining a lens of comfort felt quite liberating!

I was curious if anyone else had had this thought before, so I googled "The Rule of Thirds."

It turns out there's a rule of thirds for composing visual images.

It proposes that "an image should be imagined as divided into nine equal parts by two equally spaced horizontal lines and two equally spaced vertical lines, and those important compositional elements should be placed along these lines or their intersections."

This concept in photography is said to create more tension, energy, and interest.

This is a bit of a departure from how I think about my self-proclaimed "rule of thirds" as an expression of minimalism, but reading this did get me thinking further.

Could I apply this same concept in business to reduce effort, focus, and attention by a third and create the result of positive tension, energy, and interest?

So this is something I'm playing with this week.

Could I reduce my systems and software tools by 1/3?

Could I reduce my projects and client work by 1/3?

Could I reduce my budget by 1/3 without causing any headaches?

Could I reduce my hours worked by 1/3 while getting the same or better results?

The short answer is I don't know the answer to any of these questions, but it feels like a worthy exploration.

To investigate where I'm giving weight to certain assumptions as absolute truth and where taking this idea too far might make things that are currently working start to break down.

And an even more critical question:

Would efforts to reduce complexity create more simplicity, joy, or ease?

More energy and enthusiasm?

Or would it result in the the opposite - possibly creating more hardship.

Where could you stand to reduce complexity by a third in the spirit of simplicity and ease?

I encourage you to give it some thought.

Here's What I Want to Share This Week:

1. I'm working on a new mini-course: It will offer a detailed look at how I set up my "mission control system" to maintain a sense of peace as I balance managing my fractional CMO work, with growing Empire Engineering and CTC Circle.

2. CTC Circle Guest Training for July: "Compassionate Power" w/ David Karasek. I'm pretty excited about this one. David Karasek is an Olympian and 10-time Swiss swimming champion.

In his post-Olympic career, David has been taking the advanced performance protocols developed within the unforgiving “sink or swim” nature of elite-level sports…

And supporting business owners, entrepreneurs, and high-level executives in “flipping the switch" on command, no matter “what” happened moments earlier.

Join us this coming Monday for a fireside chat at 7 am pacific / 10 am eastern in CTC Circle.

CTC Circle Workshop Guest David Karasek

3. I've settled in Ciudad Colon, Costa Rica for the next three months. If anyone is in the area, let me know. I'd love to connect.

Many thanks to Ed Zaydelman for helping Janice and I to truly Live the Possibility.

Here's a view of the property from our morning walk this morning:

Our home in Ciudad Colon, Costa Rica

⚡️ Skip the Waitlist and Join CTC Circle Today ⚡️

Explore CTC Circle, our monthly membership for copywriters, coaches, course creators, and entrepreneurs in the daily trenches of building high-performing launches.

Who We Are Celebrating This Week: Anna Powers

An attorney-turned-copywriter, Anna Powers recently released a brand new Guide to the Business of Copywriting, and I was fortunate to get an early look at it.

Here are just a few of the things you'll get from this epic resource:

  • A step-by-step plan for becoming a sought-after copywriter . . . without giving up your weekends or hustling 24/7.
  • Our proprietary GAIN Copy Research Blueprint™ that shows you how to get AND KEEP a satisfied copywriting client.
Anna Power's Guide the the Business of Copywriting

Anna is also the founder of the Clickworthy Copywriting Certification.

Check it out if you are looking to master the art and science of using words to sell. She's had an impressive list of big wins serving clients like Michael Hyatt, and James Wedmore, to name a few.

Fun silly fact about Anna: She is also known as "The Human Karaoke Machine", a story I've yet to learn the origins of.

Definitely an awesome human worth getting to know.

Connect with Anna on Instagram here.

Copywriting Coach, Anna Powers

This Week's Curiosities:

Pause (Link)

A space where you will be awakened to your sense-abilities, discover the many sensations and stories that live within you, and become empowered by clarity and new choices.

TidyCal (Link)

If you are a AppSumo addict like me, you've probably noticed that their SumoDay promotions are happening this week (ends today).

If you've been hesitant to add yet another monthly subscription to your tech stack for scheduling software, TidyCal might fit the bill.

It's come a long way over the past year or so. For this week only, it is 100% free for life with the purchase of an AppSumo Plus Plan.

I've found AppSumo Plus more than pays for itself each year with the deals I've been able to snag, but then again, if you don't have good impulse control you might be better off staying far away :)

TidyCal Scheduling Software

O/Slash (Link)

Finding links is hard. Some people dig through their emails. Some get lost looking for it in their notes. Worse yet, it's buried in a Slack message from last year.

The future of links is here, and I'm loving it.

Filmot (Link) Search within YouTube subtitles. Indexing over 573 million captions across 528 million videos and 45 million channels.

Pretty Rad!

Search Youtube Subtitles

UpCoach (Link)

Todd Herman created a pretty cool program called The 90-Day Year a few years back, and is also the author of a great book called "The Alter-Ego Effect".

Most recently, he's created a new software designed specifically for professional coaches.

It promises a professional coaching platform to help you deliver transformational results for your clients and team members.

As a fan of Todd's work, I've been following this one from the sidelines over the last year.

This week it was released as a limited-time deal to AppSumo, so I grabbed it.

The reviews I've seen are mixed at this point, and in all honesty I haven't had the time to really dig in quite yet.

But if you are looking for a tool to manage your coaching programs, it might be worth a look while it's on lifetime offer.

You are always protected by their 60-day guarantee.

Todd Herman's UpCoach Transformational Software

Memorable Quote:

“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” - Summer Day, Mary Oliver

wizards chest archives

Phil Powis

Co-Founder & Chief Strategist, Sacred Business Flow

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