Basics of Automation – What you need to know to get started


People tend to shy away from this subject because they think it is to technical of a subject for them. I think its very important to clarify that automation doesn’t just mean some computer or software or “robot” handling the necessary work. Automation can be applied to anything in you life to improve you productivity. To really understand the true potential in this its important that we discuss the basics of automation.

Simply put, automation is when a process or procedure is performed with minimum human assistance. I’d like for you to look at the human as being you specifically. The goal is to eliminate you involvement and assistance on tasks. With you no longer having to worry about the tedious things, all you focus can be diverted towards pursuing whatever passion you choose to pursue.

Automation can be applied in several aspects of our lives and in this article we will discuss the basics.

Automation Through Elimination

When automation comes to mind, we quickly scramble to see what task to automate first and how best to do it. One of the most important things that gets overlooked is elimination of some tasks altogether.

This should be the first thing to look at when trying to automate anything. Look at it the same way you would look at cleaning up you house. You want to first throw away whatever you don’t need before organizing everything their appropriate places. It would be very counterproductive to spend all that time organizing something you going to throw out anyway.

The best method to find these is to track your tasks in a day broken down to every 5 minutes. (I recommend 5 minutes to really identify the micro tasks. If you feel like that’s a bit much, you can track your tasks hourly or even daily. Just keep track!) 2-3 days worth of tracking can give you the insight you need to know which tasks need to be eliminated. One of the quickest things to eliminate is manually paying you bills. Every company offers auto pay options that can be used to eliminate manual recurring payments. Some even have pretty comprehensive analytical tools to help track you expenses. We’ll discuss them more in detail in coming posts.

Automation Through Process

Process is the most important tool for automation. Process is the optimal sequence in which we do things. We all have a morning routine to get us from bed to door to where we need to be. Businesses have processes that get someone from being interested to purchasing to getting the product. Athletes have processes to get them from warm up to game time to recovery.

You get the idea. Process is defined as “A series of actions or steps taken in order to achieve a particular end.”

Think of all the steps and actions you take on a daily basis in NO particular order. Imagine being able to organize and connect them so that it can be completed more efficiently. Your life will go into a pleasant flow of things. Big tasks no longer will feel as intimidating as they once did. After some time you will realize that having a good process in place will improve the output and decrease you input. I don’t know about you but that is good enough “minimum human assistance” for me.

Even the simplest of processes should be taken into consideration. The more efficient you processes, the faster it will get done which will in turn free up a lot of you time.

Automation Through Assistance

How many times have you looked at task and thought “Is there no one that could do this for me right now?” Well there is. We live in an era where “the world is flat”.(Book) all you need is a simple internet connection and you are connected to the world. There are many freelancing sites out there that can help you find someone to do pretty much anything short of illegal.

Things you can easily delegate to assistants.

– Screen Emails and calls

– Attend and take notes on webinars

– Data entry

– Shopping

-Organize files and folders

(Insert link to assistants page)

This is something that people find simple but I want to warn you that this is as difficult as dealing with software. Just like you have to understand programming to work with software, you have to understand people to manage them properly. Trying to automate you life with the help of assistants can quickly become more time-consuming than anything else if not properly managed.

Automation Through Technology

How we utilize technology has changed drastically in the last few years. Almost all apps and programs available to consumers today have a very simple user interface and learning curve. Most even have fun tutorials to help you learn. Many of these apps and programs can be utilized to automate different parts of our lives.

You can be using:

  • Traffic apps to automatically route the most optimal route
  • Finance apps to automatically record, categorize, and budget all transactions
  • Social media managing apps to automatically post for you.
  • Task and Project managing apps to automatically notify you of deadlines, etc.
  • Cloud based Apps to sync all you working data automatically. (Google Drive)


Automation can seem daunting at first but it doesn’t have to be. Focus on the reasons you want to automate parts of you life. This will be enough motivation to keep you on achieving automation. Start with the basics and work you way up from there. You don’t have to wake up tomorrow morning to a fully automated lifestyle but you should definitely wake up to having one less task.

Remember…… One small task a day is 365 automated things a year! I know we are all capable of doing simple math. I just wanted to put an emphasis on the power of commitment. Commitment paired with automation can exponentially increase you productivity. Productivity that can then be utilized towards you strength. Just think for a second how empowering it would be to put all you focus and attention on you passion and strengths. The possibilities are endless.

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