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Squaring the Circle

Squaring the Circle

Mike Doane

How to double your output with half the effort

We often find ourselves doing certain things simply because that’s how they’ve always been done. Deep down, we know there’s a better way. We just can’t step away from the details long enough to consider the possibilities.

Squaring the circle is a simple reminder to do exactly this. It forces us to ask how we can improve ourselves and the way we live our lives.

Traditionally, squaring the circle was a mathematical problem deemed impossible, a metaphor describing the transformation from lead to gold, and a symbol for finding meaning in life. Similar to Nietzsche’s eternal recurrence, this concept can be difficult to understand if taken literally.

For us, squaring the circle is all about gaining new perspective and turning old thinking (lead) into new insights (gold).

The ultimate goal is to get high output from low input. It’s about finding ways to maintain, magnify, or nullify the status quo while moving on to bigger and better things. Some call this delegation or outsourcing, but it’s more than action. It’s a mindset.

Squaring the circle helps free up our time, energy, and resources so we can transform our business, life, and relationships.

A way to transform your thinking about the world and double your output.
A representation of squaring the circle.

Here’s how it works:

First, observe your current status quo (the inner circle). This includes what you’re doing, the processes you use, and how it all works together.

Then, step away and consider why you’re doing these things (the square). Ask yourself (or, better yet, ask someone else) if your time might be better spent elsewhere, how you can automate or consolidate processes, and if there are opportunities to amplify the results of your successes while freeing up time for yourself.

Next, take action on your best observations (the triangle). Cut out high-input/low-output investments, hire someone or purchase a product to take over repeatable processes, and implement new ideas.

What you’re left with is a new reality that will eventually become a status quo itself (the outer circle).

This is a never-ending process. Once you create a new reality, you’ll begin work on transforming it again. Squaring the circle is about constant and endless improvement.