Photo by Javier Allegue Barros on Unsplash

How to be consistently productive?

This is Danny from XO Capital chiming in for this edition of Friday Notes.

Productivity is something I've struggled with over the past several years. Shouldn't I have this figured out as a 33-year old? Isn't my job as a founder to be incredibly productive with limited time, limited resources, and an infinite pile of to-dos? Yikes.

I have a long list of excuses you probably don't want to hear about. At the end of the day, I struggle with the quality and quantity of my output because I'm not in control of and consistent with my inputs.


Time is something I'm still learning how to control and optimize.

When there wasn't anything that needed 100% of me, except me, productivity was easy. That's why I think I loved software sales. You eat what you kill, and how much you hunt directly correlates to how much you eat. Early in my career, I dedicated 100% of my time to being a great salesperson.

The past 10 years, things have changed... for the better, but nonetheless, things have changed.

Now, I have a wife, a 2-year-old son, another son on the way, a portfolio of SaaS companies, the XO team, and all the other normal things that come with being an adult. Maybe I'm way behind and I need to figure my shit out, but it's been hard navigating how to manufacture the same level of productivity across multiple things that all deserve 100% from me.

  • There's an immaturity I need to work through. I still crave to FEEL worthy whether it's with the founder/startup community or amongst other parents or husbands.
  • There are fears I have yet to admit. I still wonder if ultimately I will fail and my family will reap the consequences of my inability to succeed.
  • There's inconsistency in my devotion to pursue what I want. I still sometimes am okay where I'm at... not because I'm actually okay with it, but because I want to give up or I'm okay if it doesn't work out. Damn... that was tough to write.

The same fragmented feeling exists with XO's portfolio of companies. Currently, we have 5 different SaaS companies...

  • With 5 different audiences
  • With 5 different growth playbooks
  • With 5 different sets of priorities

Sounds like a lot...of complaining from me haha.

Thankfully I've got a great support system, including Andrew and Henry at XO, who call me out and hear me out.

Enough of the complaining. Here are some of the actionable things I'm doing to improve my productivity across all the important things I want to give my 100%:


  • Get back to consistent, don't ever miss, date nights with the wife (still needs improvement)
  • Shutting off my computer when my son is home from daycare (work in progress)

XO Capital

  • Having a consistent morning routine for XO, started using Akiflow about 6 months ago (still needs improvement)
  • Mix in life-giving/joy-giving projects and tasks with the necessary, grind work that comes with being a founder of an early-stage startup (work in progress)
  • Consolidating what we can across the portfolio (blog post coming soon on this)


  • Giving up alcohol - it'll be 1 year this coming April 1, 2023 (going well)
  • Write more publicly. And not care how it might sound or look to other people (still needs improvement)

Anyways, thanks for reading if you got this far. If you have your own lessons learned or thoughts you'd like to share on this topic, ping me.