Efficiency Hack From The Bomb Squad

The very first job I had in the Army was called EOD. For those of you out there that do not speak acronym like the rest of us crazy military people do, that stands for explosive ordnance disposal. You might know us as the bomb squad, because we are the idiots that go out there and play with unexploded bombs, rockets, and missiles. You might also recognizes from the news because we are the ones who go out and mess with those nasty little improvised explosive devices or IED's.

The school is very long, almost an entire year of intensive training at multiple locations as students learn how to handle these hazards in a variety of conditions. Even more interesting is the fact that we don't even know every single kind of ordnance that is used around the world. Although we have a lot of it figured out, you are always going to be presented with a new challenge on every single incident.

One of the things they teach you at the schoolhouse is to reduce your exposure to danger by making every move you make as efficient as possible. You learn the phrase very quickly, "tool in and tool out". Simply put, when you approach a dangerous item you need to make sure that you have a reason for being there. You need to make sure that you bring as much as you can on every single trip both to the item and back to the safety area. It might seem simple in practice, but it's incredibly complicated when you understand the variety of tools that are sometimes needed to render safe an explosive device.

How does that apply to daily life in the civilian world? It's a great reminder to make every single move as efficient as possible. Try to make the most out of every single trip and every single action that you take. Maximize your potential with every single movement. Here are a few examples:

  • Take dirty dishes to the sink when you're going to the bathroom.

  • Fold a few items of clothing when you get up to get a refill of your drink.

  • Put a few dishes in the dishwasher after you get a refill of your drink.

  • Fold a few more clothes on your way back to your computer desk.

  • Take the trash out of your car while you are going to get a washcloth.

  • Get a refill of your coffee while you are making copies at the copy machine.

In other words, do more with everything that you do. Try not to find yourself walking around with empty hands. Try to make sure that you have tasks in front of you to complete. Adopt the mindset of extreme efficiency and extreme productivity. Remember that every single second you spend on this planet is a moment in time the you cannot get back. When you focus on this maximum level of efficiency, you will be much more productive and much more satisfied.


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