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  • Announcing: The 5-Day Focus Challenge Coming Up On Monday, April 8th

Seven years ago, I was overweight by 23 lbs. Most of my clothes didn’t fit me. I was ashamed of my body and I wished I was stronger. Even as a woman, I wish I could lift little things without asking for the help of others.

So I set out a goal to lose weight and become stronger. After researching for several weeks, I had the best meal plan and workout schedule mapped out on my calendar. Every day I knew exactly how many calories I would eat, at what time I would work out and what I would do at the gym.

This was the moment I had been waiting for. Everything was planned for. Now it was up to me to follow my plan and execute it. Deep down inside, I knew that if I followed this picture perfect plan, my life would be great again.

Fast forward a few weeks later, I never followed through. Life got busy. We had a lot of stuff going on at work. I kept postponing my workouts and I never stuck to my meal plan for more than 3 days.

I felt like a huge failure. Weeks of planning and researching went to waste.


Why didn’t I follow through? Why didn’t I take action?

They are simple questions but tough to answer. I started to question if I could really do it and if I had the capacity to follow through. I reached the point when I felt sorry for myself. Just thinking about it right now gives me the hibbie jibbies because I don’t like the feeling of helplessness.

When I showed up for work, my co-workers could tell I wasn’t myself.

“What’s wrong Marmel?”


One day, Thanh, the founder and CEO of Asian Efficiency, pulled me aside and asked me: “Marmel, I can tell you’re not yourself. What’s wrong? Talk to me.”

I finally told him what was wrong. I felt ashamed. I worked at a productivity training company and I didn’t even follow through on my own goals.

Luckily Thanh understood what was going on. He encouraged me to try again but this time with a new set of strategies. He said the plan wasn’t bad but that I missed just a few things to execute on it.

With his advice, four months later I was able to run a half marathon, drop 23 pounds and be in the best shape of my life. I finally accomplished my goal after years of struggling and now I’m using the same strategies for my other goals with great success.

Weight Loss
30 days after speaking with Thanh
10k run
After running, still smiling!
Four months and still continuing

Do you want to know what he shared with me? We decided to share these productivity strategies with you via a challenge. Next week, starting Monday, April 8th, we will start a 5-day focus challenge to help you get focused and follow through on your goals. Every day we will release a new productivity strategy and it’s the exact same one that Thanh (founder of Asian Efficiency) has shared with me and dozens of private coaching clients.

If you want to accomplish your goals, then join me and thousands of fellow Asian Efficiency readers in this 5-day Focus Challenge. Sign up here to receive the announcement when we start on Monday:

Enter the Focus Challenge Giveaway

Get a chance to win prizes and receive daily emails during the Focus Challenge:

But It Gets Better! We Have a Surprise…

More than a year ago (17 months to be exact), we had another Focus Challenge and we were floored by success stories of those who participated. People were taking action on things they kept putting off for years, some stopped procrastination in its track and many picked up tasks that they never thought they would ever do (even though they knew it was important to them). Here are a few examples:

My task was to complete my logo for rebranding my Etsy shop which had been a huge blocker for me for months. I finalized my logo and also my style guide! Thanks, AE! – Kacy

My challenge was to declutter my DevonThink Pro Database, especially review my list documents labeled « To Do ». I went to 200+ documents to review to 31! So next week all the list will be over! THANKS!!!! – Jean-Luc

I had the task of putting the iPhone into Airplane Mode. This had the impact of creating a distraction-free environment to execute on the current task ahead, and only on that task. It’s also had a knock-on effect…..I forget to turn it back on, meaning I’m more present with my kids today (Saturday) as no iPhone distractions! 2 birds, one very simple stone! Thanks again for this challenge. You guys are onto something here! Keep up the good work. Thanks again. – Oliver

I completed the five-day Focus Challenge. The priority that I identified was taking the time to get more involved in my community. I’ve been living in my city for over a year, and until now, I hadn’t really explored much; I always felt as though work, a husband in law school, and my baby were keeping me too busy to get out much. So during my focus block this week, I started contacting mom groups in the area and looking up events. This morning, I went to our local library and met Laura Numeroff-the author of If You Give a Mouse a Cookie-at a book signing. I was able to meet some other moms in the area, I (finally) signed up for a library card, and I learned about other events we can start to attend. I’m so glad I took the time to make this happen. Thanks for putting this challenge together! – Kristen

The thing that was the most important takeaway when completing the Focus Challenge was that my goals are achievable if not for my lack of focus. It’s time to put those goals in a place that can be seen and easily reminded. Because of that, I’ve put together a guide that shows my goals for the rest of the year. Good luck to me and thanks to AE for guiding me through an exercise to make me realize what needs to be done! – Esra

Those are just some of the emails that we received from our readers and we have hundreds more!

To help you and motivate you, we will give away prizes for those who participate in the 5-day Focus Challenge. When you join this challenge, you not only get things done, you will also get the chance to win some amazing prizes like…

Bose QC 35 ($349 value)

This is Asian Efficiency’s favorite noise-canceling headphones and we recommend this to our readers and our customers. The best headphones to use when you want to focus and when you want to enjoy your music.

1-year membership to the Dojo

The Dojo is an exclusive Productivity community that comes with coaching and accountability. You will be surrounded by like-minded people who are more than willing to help you out and at the same time, you have direct access to the Asian Efficiency Team whenever you need help.

Apple Airpods V2

The Airpods recently got updated and it now has hands-free Siri and longer talk time. It’s great to use when you have to attend conference calls or when you’re attending a webinar. You can even use it when you go to the gym.

Curtis McHale’s The Art of Focus Book (3 winners)

Curtis McHale is a Dojo member and he recently published a book on Focus. This book is very honest and it tells you directly that sometimes your passion doesn’t really pay the bills and saying “follow your passion” could mean bankruptcy.

To win, all you need to do is join the challenge and participate every day in the blog comments. We will send you a daily email during the challenge and let us know in the comments what you got out of it.

On April 25th, we will announce the winners. Anyone can participate – it doesn’t matter where you live (can be international).

Now what

In the comments section, let us know that you’re in and click on the button below to share that you joined the 5-Day Focus Challenge.

Tweet: I'm starting my #AsianEfficient 5-day focus challenge! Join me here: https://aelikes.me/FocusChallenge

Don’t forget to subscribe to receive updates about the challenge–and to know how you win!

Enter the Focus Challenge Giveaway

Get a chance to win prizes and receive daily emails during the Focus Challenge:

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  1. I am joining the list of followers that have completed your challenge and moving on to to next week’s one hour focus blocks.
    Thank you!

  2. I’m in !!
    My goal is to exercise on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays.
    Also i’m working on following through on a healtht meal plan that i’ve already plan.

  3. I’m in! Executive function skills have always been hard for me, so I’m looking forward to learning concrete steps to executing my plans.

  4. I really want to start lifting, but just haven’t been able to get started. This seems like a good chance for me to start with a bang.

  5. I would like to participate.
    My goal is to get on the road to better health by exercising and sticking to my eating/fasting plan

  6. I’m in. My goal is to have all my equipment setup for my garden and the debris around my garden cleared. Approximately 1200 Sq Ft.

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