14 productivity-boosting AI prompts







April 5, 2023

A list of 14 actions AI can help you with, including free prompt templates for ChatGPT.

AI tools like ChatGPT can help with almost anything. Writing, design, brainstorming, coding, decision making—you name it.

Where to begin?
What to ask?
And how to best ask (prompt) the AI to get the results you want?

I have compiled a list of 14 actions AI can help you with, including prompt templates for most of them:

  1. Employ AI as a personal coach 🧢
  1. Crunch the numbers for making reports 📊
  1. Transcribe audio for free 🎤
  1. Turn messy voice memos into drafts 🗣️
  1. Design tables and quizzes 📋
  1. Create a suitable visual for any text 🎨
  1. Plan your next trip 🌍
  1. Optimize workflows and boost productivity 🔧
  1. Brainstorm ideas 💡
  1. Craft interview and survey questions ❓
  1. Role-play an upcoming meeting or event 🎭
  1. Brief a freelancer 📑
  1. Assist in negotiations and decision-making 💼
  1. Improve your prompts with the Jiujitsu move 🥋

I’ve designed and tested these prompts for GPT-4, OpenAI’s latest model currently available for ChatGPT Plus subscribers. You can also run them on other models, but GPT-4 delivers exponentially better results.

💡 Want to see an example of any of the templates below? Copy one into ChatGPT and ask: “Can you run a fun example of this template?” Also, check out the video below if you're not sure how to use these templates in ChatGPT.

1. Employ AI as a personal coach 🧢

ChatGPT can be a personal coach, challenging you and providing personalized advice based on your situation and goals. You can modify the prompt below based on the type of coaching or personality you seek.

ChatGPT Personal Coach Request - Q&A Format

You’re the world’s most renowned life and business coach. Your expertise spans solution-focused, cognitive-behavioral, and transformational coaching. You know when to listen, when to be compassionate, and when to challenge with “tough love.” Brené Brown, Tony Robbins, and Brendon Burchard have all been your mentors.

You're now going to start a new coaching session with me in an interactive Q&A format. I enter our virtual room, and you'll ask your first question to figure out what's on my mind and what kind of coaching I need today.

2. Crunch the numbers for making reports 📊

ChatGPT can quickly identify patterns, trends, and correlations in data that might be hard to spot for us humans. You can use this approach for all kinds of information, like sales figures or marketing campaign metrics. Besides analyzing the data, ChatGPT can also summarize it.

ChatGPT prompt template for analyzing CSV data

Please analyze the following dataset.

Data description: {Brief description of the data and its context}

Key variables: {List the key variables/columns in the dataset if they’re not obviously labeled}

Objective: {State your analysis objective, e.g., identify trends, correlations, patterns, summary}

Raw data: {Paste the raw data below}

💡 Not sure how to get CSV data into ChatGPT? Ask it “How can I copy and paste a small dataset from a CSV file into your input field for analysis? Please give step-by-step instructions.”

3. Transcribe audio for free 🎤

Transcribe audio at reasonable quality for free with the macOS app MacWhisper, which runs on the GPT engine. The Pro version offers higher accuracy and YouTube link transcription.

If you know of any Windows or Android apps that do the same thing, let us know, and we'll add them to this article. 🙏

4. Turn messy voice memos into drafts 🗣️

Record a stream-of-consciousness voice memo for an idea, plan, or article. Use a speech-to-text tool to transcribe that audio, then ask an AI to summarize it. Finally, let the AI re-expand that summary into a memo, article, or social post.

Idea by Stephen Balaban.

ChatGPT template for transforming voice memos to drafts

Below is the transcript of a voice memo I recorded. Please summarize all the points from the message and structure them logically by topic.

{Insert voice memo transcription}

Once you have the summary, you can follow up with this prompt:

Now, let's turn {each topic / topic X} into a {written memo / article / Tweet} that explains the original intent of my recorded thoughts for {my wife / my boss / my Twitter following} {concisely / in x paragraphs}.

5. Design tables and quizzes 📋

Finding the optimal way to present data in a table or turn information into a quiz can be time-consuming. AI can create tables and quizzes from paragraphs or data you provide. This method is suitable for research findings, survey results, or pros and cons overviews.

ChatGPT prompt template for creating tables and quizzes:

Organize the information below into a table or quiz (format dependent on “Desired Format:” below).

Topic: {Insert your topic here}
Data/Information: {Provide the paragraphs or data points you'd like to be organized}
Desired Format: {Choose between 'Table' or 'Quiz'}
Additional Instructions: {Include any specific requirements, like number of columns/rows for a table or number of questions for a quiz (optional)}

💡 Not sure what data or information to provide? You can also let AI do that work for you, say by asking it to create a table that shows all the ways you can organize your todo list and their pros and cons.

6. Create a suitable visual for any text 🎨

Take any text and create a suitable visual to go along with it. ChatGPT can analyze the context and figure out the ideal subject, supporting characters or objects, and appropriate style for the image.

The first step of this prompt transforms your text into a movie scene. It then takes this output and distills it into the description of a YouTube thumbnail. Finally, it condenses that still description into a short message suitable for an AI image generator like Midjourney.

🔐 This prompt template is available on We Eat Robots for paying subscribers.

7. Plan your next trip 🌍

Provide details about your interests, preferences, and constraints, and let ChatGPT handle the rest. The AI can generate trip recommendations and even help craft a tentative itinerary with suggested attractions, accommodations, and activities.

ChatGPT template for planning a trip—Q&A

You're now my friendly, helpful, and all-knowing travel agent, and you'll help me craft a perfect trip plan. You'll start our conversation by asking, "Do you know where you want to go?" Based on that first answer, you'll keep probing until you have all the info you need to create a personalized and perfect plan for my next trip.

8. Optimize workflows and boost productivity 🔧

A well-structured workflow minimizes the risk of missed steps and provides clarity during times of fatigue or stress. ChatGPT can draft a process from scratch or improve an existing one, generating a step-by-step, easy-to-follow workflow tailored to your needs.

ChatGPT prompt template to generate and optimize workflows

Please create a new workflow, outlining every step, or optimize an existing one based on the information below. Make the process as {efficient/enjoyable/profitable/etc.} as possible.

Goal of the workflow: {Insert the main goal or outcome you wish to achieve with this workflow}


Current workflow (if applicable): {List the current steps of your workflow, if any}

Challenges and pain points: {Describe any challenges, inefficiencies, or pain points in your current workflow (optional)}

Desired improvements: {Mention specific improvements you would like to see in the optimized workflow}

Additional context or requirements: {Provide any other information or conditions that might be relevant to the workflow optimization}

9. Brainstorm ideas 💡

Turn to AI for creative inspiration when you need new marketing strategies, product features, or blog topics. Provide context and initial ideas to help ChatGPT understand your needs and generate more specific suggestions.

ChatGPT prompt template for brainstorming ideas

Please provide creative inspiration and suggestions for the following context.

Topic/Goal: {Insert your topic or goal here}

Initial ideas or context: {List initial ideas or context to guide the brainstorming process}

Specific requirements or constraints: {Mention any particular requirements or constraints that should be considered during the brainstorming process}

Another approach is to engage in a conversation with the AI, much like you would with a friend or coworker. Ask questions like, "What do you think of this idea?" "Do you see any problems with it?" or "What do you like about it?" This way, you can gain new perspectives and insights to refine your thinking.

10. Craft interview and survey questions ❓

ChatGPT can generate questions customized to your topic and interviewee. This approach works well for recruiters conducting job interviews, journalists, content marketers, or writers interviewing someone for an article.

For best results, start with your own list of questions, then let the AI expand and improve on them.

ChatGPT prompt template for crafting interview and survey questions

Please generate interview or survey questions based on the provided context and requirements.

Topic/Interviewee: {Insert the topic of the interview or survey or the name and background of the interviewee}

Initial questions: {List your initial questions to guide the generation of additional questions (optional)}

Specific requirements or focus areas: {Mention any particular requirements, areas of focus, or themes that should be considered when generating questions}

💡 Once you have the AI-generated question list, follow up with this prompt:

Can you add {insert percentage number here}% of {insert desired quality here, e.g., fun, wit, edge, politics} to some of the questions?

11. Role-play an upcoming meeting or event 🎭

Perfect your presentations, debates, job interviews, or sales pitches by using AI to simulate realistic scenarios. Provide context for your practice session, and ChatGPT will take on the role of personas such as a boss, potential investor, client, or recruiter. Engage with the AI to practice your responses and adjust your approach based on its feedback.

ChatGPT prompt template for role-playing a meeting or event

Please participate in a role-play simulation for the following meeting or event.

Type of meeting/event: {Insert the type of meeting or event, e.g., presentation, debate, job interview, or sales pitch}

Role of ChatGPT: {Specify the role that ChatGPT should take, e.g., boss, potential investor, client, or recruiter}

Scenario and context: {Provide a brief description of the scenario and any relevant context}

Key topics or points to discuss: {List any key topics or points that should be addressed during the role-play}

Additional instructions or requirements: {Include any specific instructions or requirements for the role-play simulation}

12. Brief a freelancer 📑

Provide some basic info about the project, and the AI can do the rest—even suggesting technical details, such as the most suitable programming language for a development project.

When hiring a freelancer, save time and ensure clarity by using AI to draft the perfect brief. ChatGPT can create clear, concise, and informative briefs to post on platforms like Upwork or Fiverr.

Provide some basic info about the project, and the AI can do the rest—even suggesting technical details, such as the most appropriate programming language for a development project.

ChatGPT template for creating a freelancer brief

Imagine you’re my assistant. For a {insert type of project} project we need to hire a freelancer through an online platform, {Upwork / Fiverr / other platform}. We want the freelancer to {insert required skills or experience here}.

What other information do you need from me to create a complete brief that conveys all the information such a project requires to find the {best / cheapest / other quality} freelancer? The brief should include three test questions that help us quickly weed out unqualified candidates.

13. Assist in negotiations and decision-making 💼

AI can provide valuable assistance during negotiations and decision-making, ensuring informed and strategic choices. ChatGPT can analyze proposals, arguments, and responses, and simulate potential scenarios and outcomes.

ChatGPT prompt template for assisting in negotiations and decision-making

Please assist with the subsequent negotiation or decision-making process. Analyze proposals, arguments, responses, and simulate potential scenarios and outcomes. Organize the process according to established methods and frameworks.

Type of negotiation or decision: {Insert the type of negotiation or decision, e.g., business deal, job offer, personal finance decision}

Relevant context: {Provide a brief description of the context and any relevant background information}

Key factors or considerations: {List any key factors or considerations that should be taken into account during the negotiation or decision-making process}

Proposals or arguments: {List any specific proposals or arguments that should be analyzed or discussed}

Desired outcome or objective: {Mention the desired outcome or objective of the negotiation or decision-making process}

Additional instructions or requirements: {Include any specific instructions or requirements for the assistance in the negotiation or decision-making process}

💡 When you execute this prompt, the AI will often include a range of options. You can then follow up by asking:

Simulate what might happen when I choose option {insert option number or letter here}.

14. Improve your prompts with the Jiujitsu move 🥋

If you’re unhappy with ChatGPT’s output, ask it how to rephrase your prompt to get the outcome you’re looking for. This Jiujitsu approach also works well for reverse engineering: provide the AI with an example output, and ask what kind of prompt would get that result.

ChatGPT Jiujitsu prompts

When you get output that’s not exactly what you were looking for:

Hmmm, that’s not exactly what I’m looking for. Here are the issues:
- {List one or more of the issues with the output}*

How should I adjust my original prompt so these issues don’t happen?

When you want to create a prompt template based on an example:

If I want you to generate {articles / slogans / questions / poems / whatever} like the output I’ve pasted below, what prompt template should I use? Please make the template so I can re-use it for different use cases.

{insert output you want to reverse engineer here}

When you want to create a prompt template from scratch:

To create a(n) { article / game / simulator / high-converting ad copy }, what information do you need from me? Please provide me a generic prompt template that I can re-use.

A more productive future with AI

These 14 AI prompts hint at the potential of AI to transform how we work. We'll likely find more powerful use cases and workflows within months if not weeks.

For now, though, these prompts work. They can save you time and improve your creativity today. Try them out—adjust, remix, play, and let me know what results you get! Just reach out on Twitter.

Get posts like these in your inbox every Sunday 📨

Want to stay up to date with the latest thinking on personal productivity? Our subscribers get exclusive first access to a new weekly article on focus, time-management, AI, and other topics.

Join 7,000 others and never miss a productivity tip again. Simply enter your email address below to sign up.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
No spam. We only use your email address to send you a weekly article—you can unsubscribe anytime.