Book Review

The One Thing

Learn the power of focusing on a single task that can make everything else easier or unnecessary. This book offers strategies for identifying and prioritising your most impactful work, leading to greater success and productivity in all areas of your life.

Ewoud Uphof

The One Thing


"The One Thing" by Gary Keller and Jay Papasan is a book that emphasises the importance of focusing on a single task or goal to achieve success. It argues that by concentrating on the most important task, all other tasks will become easier or unnecessary.

Key Concepts

The central idea of the book is the question: "What's the one thing, such by doing it, everything else will become easier or unnecessary?" This question can be applied in various contexts, from personal development to business strategy. It encourages the reader to identify the most crucial task or goal and to dedicate their efforts to that singular focus.

Personal Reflection

I have found the principles in "The One Thing" to be highly actionable and applicable in my daily life and work. Whenever I feel stuck, I ask myself the key question from the book, helping me to identify the most important task at hand. I also use this question with my clients and as part of my weekly review and planning and fire-break.

The concept of focusing on one thing resonates with other works I have read, such as "Essentialism," "The 80/20 Principle," "The 4-Hour Work Week," and "Principles" by Ray Dalio. These books collectively emphasise the importance of not spreading oneself too thin and the value of concentrated effort.

In the context of growth marketing, the principles of "The One Thing" can be applied to identify the few vital areas that matter for growth. Instead of attempting to juggle multiple tasks simultaneously, the book encourages a more deliberate and focused approach.


"The One Thing" offers a simple yet profound insight into the power of focus. By identifying and concentrating on the most important task, individuals and businesses can achieve more with less effort. The book's principles are not only relevant to personal growth but also have practical applications in various professional fields, including growth marketing. It serves as a valuable reminder not to be lazy in decision-making and to commit to a singular focus for greater success.

Break work into intervals, traditionally 25 minutes in length, to improve mental agility.

Implement strategic pauses in your workflow to reassess priorities and prevent burnout.

Designate uninterrupted time slots for deep work to boost efficiency and output.

Prioritise tasks by urgency and importance to maximise productivity.

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What you'll learn

About Ewoud

Ewoud Uphof is an experienced growth marketer and certified growth optimiser. He started full-funnel marketing in 2012, long before it was called 'growth hacking'.

As Head of Growth he has helped grow 50+ companies ranging from start-ups to multinationals.

In the past decade he has co-founded multiple companies.

About Ewoud

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The One Thing

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