Appropriate leveraging using AI tools

by Captain Walker

Categories: Psychology & Philosophy, Technology

I just received learned opinion from a group of high IQ doctors that using AI to summarise articles and present findings is “low effort”. This means that anybody who cannot or does use AI for such purposes, is a “high effort” person!

Some people may to believe that low effort is simply laziness. However, low effort could mean appropriate leveraging of effort for maximising output. See below: ‘working with AI‘.

In the context of achieving high results, “low effort” doesn’t necessarily mean slacking off or doing the bare minimum. Instead, it can mean strategically minimising unnecessary effort and maximising the impact of the effort you do invest. This approach involves:

  1. Identifying Leverage Points: This means recognising the areas where a small amount of effort can yield disproportionately large results. For example, automating repetitive tasks, delegating to others, or focusing on high-impact activities.
  2. Optimising Processes: Streamlining workflows, eliminating bottlenecks, and finding more efficient ways of doing things can significantly reduce the overall effort required to achieve a goal.
  3. Utilising Tools and Technology: Leveraging the right tools and technologies can automate tasks, enhance productivity, and free up time for more strategic work.
  4. Focusing on Strengths: By focusing on your strengths and delegating tasks that are not your forte, you can maximize your impact and avoid wasting time on activities that don’t play to your natural abilities.
  5. Prioritising Rest and Recovery: Taking breaks, getting enough sleep, and engaging in activities that recharge your batteries can actually enhance your overall productivity and creativity.

In essence, “low effort” in this context is about working smarter, not harder. It is about finding ways to achieve your goals with less stress, less burnout, and more enjoyment. It is a mindset that values efficiency, effectiveness, and a sustainable approach to work and life.

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Appropriate leveraging

By embracing this concept of “appropriate leveraging,” you can achieve remarkable results without sacrificing your well-being or personal life. You can learn to work with your natural rhythms, prioritise what truly matters, and utilize the resources available to you to maximise your impact.

Are you knackered from the “work ’til you drop” mentality? You know, that never-ending slog of putting in longer hours, only to feel like you’re barely treading water? Perhaps you’ve secretly wished there was a way to smash your goals without sacrificing your sanity or your social life.

Well, here’s the tea: there is. And it might sound a bit mad, but it involves embracing your inner slacker. Now, before you scoff and think I’ve lost the plot, let me explain. I’m not talking about becoming a couch potato or dodging all responsibility. In fact, my ideas are all about achieving more—more success, more impact, more satisfaction—with less graft. It is about working smarter, not harder. It is about finding ways to streamline your work, automate tasks, and get your priorities straight, so you can reach your goals without feeling burnt out.

Cultural evolution of ‘high effort’

The concept of “high effort” is deeply ingrained in our cultural consciousness, but its meaning and value have evolved over time.

In the past, particularly during the Industrial Revolution and post-war eras, high effort was often associated with sheer physical exertion and long hours of labour. It was a time when productivity was measured by the sweat of one’s brow and the willingness to sacrifice personal life for professional advancement. This “hustle culture” mentality was reinforced by societal expectations, economic pressures, and a belief in the moral value of hard work.

However, as we’ve moved into the 21st century, the definition of high effort has undergone a significant shift. With advancements in technology, automation, and a growing emphasis on work-life balance, the focus has shifted from quantity to quality of effort.

Today, high effort is less about brute force and more about working smarter, not harder. It is about:

  • Strategic Thinking: Identifying the most impactful tasks and prioritising them over less important ones.
  • Efficiency: Leveraging tools and technology to streamline workflows and automate repetitive tasks.
  • Collaboration: Working effectively with others to achieve shared goals, recognising that collective effort can often yield greater results than individual toil.
  • Adaptability: Embracing change and uncertainty, continuously learning and evolving to stay ahead of the curve.
  • Well-being: Prioritising mental and physical health, recognising that a well-rested and balanced individual is more likely to be productive and creative.

This evolution in the concept of high effort to appropriate leveraging, reflects a broader cultural shift towards a more holistic and sustainable approach to work and life. It acknowledges that true productivity and success are not just about working long hours but about working effectively, efficiently, and in a way that supports our overall well-being.

While the old adage “no pain, no gain” may still hold some truth, the modern interpretation of high effort is less about suffering and more about smart strategy, adaptability, and a willingness to embrace change. It is about recognising that effort is not an end in itself, but a means to an end – achieving our goals and living a fulfilling life.

The AI Tool

In our quest for efficiency, artificial intelligence (AI) has emerged as a game-changer, offering a powerful tool for “appropriate leveraging.” By harnessing the capabilities of AI, we can streamline our efforts, automate mundane tasks, and unlock new levels of productivity.

AI as Your Digital Assistant: Think of AI as your ever-ready, tireless assistant, capable of handling a myriad of tasks that would otherwise consume your precious time and energy. From scheduling meetings and managing emails to generating reports and analysing data, AI can take on the heavy lifting, freeing you up to focus on more strategic and creative endeavours.

Automation for the Win: One of the most significant advantages of AI is its ability to automate repetitive and time-consuming tasks. By delegating these mundane activities to AI, you can reclaim hours of your day and redirect your focus towards more meaningful work. Imagine never having to manually sort through emails, update spreadsheets, or proofread documents again – AI can handle it all, leaving you to focus on the big picture.

Insights at Your Fingertips: AI-powered analytics tools can sift through vast amounts of data, uncovering patterns, trends, and insights that would be impossible for a human to detect alone. This enables you to make more informed decisions, identify opportunities, and optimize your strategies for maximum impact.

Learning and Growth: AI is not just about automation; it is also about learning and growth. By analysing your work patterns, AI can offer personalized recommendations for improving your efficiency, identifying areas where you can upskill, and even suggesting new tools and resources that can enhance your performance.

Collaboration and Communication: AI can facilitate seamless collaboration and communication, breaking down barriers and enabling teams to work more effectively together. From real-time translation to virtual meeting assistants, AI tools can enhance communication, foster creativity, and drive innovation.

However, no one is suggesting that AI is a tool, to replace for human ingenuity and expertise. To truly leverage its power, we must approach it with a discerning eye, using it to augment our abilities, not replace them. By combining the best of human and machine intelligence, we can unlock a new era of productivity, efficiency, and achievement.

Working with AI

Many people fail to appreciate that highly skilled professionals, such as judges, senior barristers, and medical consultants, rely on junior staff to gather and draft materials. Senior personnel then review and amend the content produced. This process is effective and operates daily, alleviating the workload of senior staff while offering trainees invaluable experience and learning opportunities. It is unreasonable to expect a senior medical consultant to be chasing laboratory results and organising them for the records. The senior’s role is to provide training, share expertise, and collaboratively interpret the work with juniors. The supervision and training of junior doctors are included in the time allocations for senior consultants. Utilising AI can be quite similar.

Using AI in a similar manner to junior staff has significant potential benefits. AI can efficiently handle routine tasks such as data collection, initial drafting of materials, and basic analysis. This not only reduces the workload of senior professionals but also ensures that they can focus on higher-level decision-making and complex problem-solving. The parallel between junior staff and AI is compelling in several ways:

Efficiency and Accuracy: AI systems can process vast amounts of data quickly and with a high degree of accuracy. This capability can streamline workflows, allowing senior professionals to access organised and relevant information without the need for time-consuming data collection and initial analysis.

Enhanced Training: While AI performs routine tasks, junior staff can be engaged in more educational activities and be mentored on more complex aspects of their profession. This approach ensures that human resources are utilised where they are most needed, fostering a more effective learning environment for trainees.

Collaborative Decision-Making: AI can serve as a valuable tool for preliminary data processing, enabling senior professionals to make more informed decisions. By providing structured information, AI supports collaborative discussions and enhances the quality of outcomes through data-driven insights.

Time Management: By offloading routine and repetitive tasks to AI, senior professionals can allocate more time to direct patient care, strategic planning, or legal reasoning. This improves overall productivity and ensures that their expertise is utilised to its fullest potential.

Continuous Improvement: AI systems can learn and adapt over time, improving their performance and utility. This continuous improvement mirrors the ongoing education of junior staff, creating a dynamic and evolving support system for senior professionals.

While AI can be a powerful tool for efficiency, it is important to recognise that using it effectively requires effort and skill. It is not a magical solution that eliminates all effort, but rather a tool that, when wielded strategically, can significantly amplify your efforts and yield greater results.

Here’s a breakdown of the effort involved in leveraging AI appropriately:

  1. Research and Selection: Choosing the right AI tool for the job requires careful research and consideration. You need to understand the different types of AI available, their strengths and weaknesses, and how well they align with your specific needs and goals. This involves reading reviews, comparing features, and perhaps even experimenting with different options before making a decision.
  2. Data Preparation: AI models are only as good as the data they are trained on. Preparing high-quality, relevant data is a crucial step in ensuring accurate and meaningful results. This may involve cleaning, organising, and formatting data, as well as identifying and addressing potential biases.
  3. Training and Fine-Tuning: For many AI applications, particularly those involving machine learning, training the model to perform effectively requires ongoing effort and expertise. This involves providing feedback, adjusting parameters, and iteratively improving the model’s performance over time.
  4. Critical Evaluation: AI is not infallible, and its outputs should always be critically evaluated. This means analyzing the results with a discerning eye, identifying potential biases or errors, and using human judgment to interpret the findings.
  5. Continuous Learning: The field of AI is constantly evolving, with new tools and technologies emerging regularly. Staying abreast of these developments and continuously learning how to leverage new AI capabilities is essential for maximising your effectiveness.

While the initial investment of effort in learning how to use AI effectively may seem daunting, the long-term benefits are undeniable. By mastering this powerful tool, you can unlock new levels of productivity, efficiency, and achievement, while freeing up your time and energy to focus on what truly matters.

Less hard graft

This blog was generated by interacting with AI. AI being a tool leads me to new insights but for which I would not have discovered for taking the time. When AI generates text out of my discussions – I am thankful because it saves me time generating much the same from scratch. I have to read all of what is generated and validate it. I have to think about it all. I may have to modify words and sentences or sentence structure. Thats a fair amount of effort.

Instead of me focusing on text-generation, I steer the evolving thoughts and ideas. By shifting my focus from the mechanics of text generation to the higher-level thinking and ideational processes, I’m essentially using AI as a thought partner, a sounding board, and a catalyst for innovation.

I’m using AI as a tool to amplify my own intellectual capabilities, rather than simply outsourcing the task of writing. This approach is particularly powerful when tackling complex problems, exploring new concepts, or generating creative content. By allowing AI to handle the grunt work, I can free your mind to focus on the big picture, the underlying themes, and the potential impact of my ideas.


It became clear that “high effort” is not a monolithic concept, but rather a dynamic and evolving one. The traditional emphasis on sheer exertion and long hours has given way to a more strategic and efficient approach, where working smarter, not harder, takes center stage.

AI emerged as a key player in this evolving landscape, not as a replacement for human effort, but as a powerful tool for amplifying it. By automating mundane tasks, uncovering hidden insights, and sparking new ideas, AI allows us to focus our energy on the most impactful activities, leading to greater productivity, creativity, and overall well-being.

However, the effective use of AI is not without its own challenges. It requires careful research, data preparation, and continuous learning. The human element remains crucial for interpreting AI-generated results, evaluating their accuracy, and applying them in meaningful ways.

This collaborative dance between human and machine intelligence is where the true potential for innovation lies. By harnessing the strengths of both, we can unlock new levels of efficiency, creativity, and problem-solving. The key is to embrace AI not as a replacement for human effort, but as a partner in our ongoing pursuit of knowledge, growth, and achievement.

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