Whenever you subtract something from your plate, your opportunities for the remainder multiply. That is a classic case of addition through subtraction.
Subtraction and division are the keys to productivity. You remove things either through completion, delegation or deletion.
Fractions are also important. You parse things down as far as they will go until you get to the lowest common denominator. Ultimately, what you are striving for is the lowest common denominator.
Multiplication happens far too often. And unlike with addition where you can keep track of how things are totaling up easier, doing so with multiplication is far more taxing…and difficult to get keep up with.
Ratios are the same…sort of. Let’s be honest: would you rather face 2:1 odds or 20:1 odds? If you are the “1” in that ratio, then keeping tabs on 2 things is far easier. And the quality of those things will be far better.
Zero is where many folks want their email inbox count to be. But unless you work at getting the stuff in your inboxes down to zero, then just going after “inbox zero” gets you next to nothing. Which can actually wind up being less than zero if you’re not careful.
As for how you can be more productive? Those possibilities are so high that they might even go to, well…infinity.