You get up in the morning, feel energized and think: Today is THE day when I finally get (insert endeavour) done! Then, 3pm rolls around, you’ve been busy all day but you realize you didn’t even cross anything off your To Do List, let alone get that big project done!
So what happened?
Productivity is often misunderstood. We think that if we’re busy, we must be productive, but nothing could be further from the truth. So, to better understand productivity, I invite you to watch this TedTalk by Chris Bailey who studied productivity over the course of a year:
How to Be Productive
1. Getting Things Done
I can’t write a post on productivity and not mention David Allen’s bestselling book: Getting Things Done – The Art of stress-free productivity. I’m in the middle of reading the new 2015 edition and it’s making me want to drop everything and reorganize how I work! This five step method promises to « bring order to chaos » and is worth checking it out.
2. Planning for Some Extra Time and Managing Life
As Leo Babauta of Zen Habits says, and in my own experience, « the things you want to do are going to take twice as long as you hope ». That’s just a fact of life. So, might as well plan for some extra time when you decide on a project.
This post rang so true, I had to send it to my husband who’s an expert at underestimating how long and how much effort a project will take. So much so, that it’s become a joke around here, referred to as Dave Time as opposed to Real Time.
Leo also talks about how we forget to make time for managing life when we plan for a bigger project. You know, the house keeping stuff: grocery shopping and meal time, cleaning, sleeping, etc.
3. Getting the Most Important Done
OMG Yes! Right? That is what productivity should be about. Courtney Carver of Be More With Less nails it again in this post about How to be More Productive by Doing Less.
This article had me go Duh! at every turn. Yet Courtney’s take on what we need to do to be productive is far from being simple to implement. Her tips are soul exploring concepts like: What do you love to do and why are those things always on the bottom of the list? Like, seriously … why?
4. Theme your Day or Time Blocking
I find it most enjoyable to do all my shopping at once: grocery, pharmacy, pet store, etc. How about you? I only have to drive to where I need to go once and I get a whole bunch done. Beats the hell out of going to the store 4 times during the week, finding parking, walking through the store, etc.
This technique is called theming your day or time blocking. It’s great for eliminating distractions and minimizing jumping from one task to the other, which is so detrimental to being able to focus.
Checked this two articles on the subject:
Finally, I leave you with this fun infographic filled with tidbits of wisdom on how productivity works.
Hope you had a productive long weekend 🙂