“Be Productive” – these two words we hear every day. We read books about productivity; we buy planners, journals, make a huge list. We follow them for a couple of days, and then boom, we are back to square one.
Have you ever thought about why people talk so much about productivity?
Do you overthink how people succeed in life following productivity?
Have you ever felt that productivity is a mind game and you will never win this game?
If your answer is YES in a BOLD, let me tell you that productivity comes from being patient, persistent and bringing self-awareness.
Now you might be thinking why patience, persistence and self-awareness are essential ingredients of this delicious recipe.
Productivity takes time, and it is not an overnight change you are going to make. Be patient with yourself and bring self-awareness to why you need productivity in life.
Ask these questions to yourself and write down the answers.
- What is productivity to me?
- What is essential in doing less and gaining more?
- How will I achieve productivity by not disturbing my routine?
Our routine plays a vital role in our productivity. From waking up to going back to sleep, we live our lives without focusing on the output. We keep scrolling social media, getting influenced by the influencers, thinking if they can do it, why can’t I do it?
There is so much going on in our careers, personal life, building our dreams, staying with family, facing many problems that productivity vanishes from the dictionary.
Without worrying too many let’s discuss something about productivity. You all might have heard of the 80/20 rule, get 80% result by putting in 20% effort. Does it work? Of course, it works if you want to.
How willing are you to make changes in your life?
When you are patient with yourself, you take action on your plans. When you are persistent, you make consistency, and when you bring self-awareness, your mind is calm you are aware of right or wrong. You don’t follow everything without knowing anything about it.
Believe me, guys, when I say I have read many self-help books and listened to many podcasts, I have fallen into the trap of getting productive without realising that I was going in the wrong direction. After following the To-Do List for two weeks, I felt like giving upon. I had no idea why I created so many To-Do lists, why I was rushing to get results without acknowledging. It was exhausting, and frustration surrounded me.
If you have read the Pareto Principle, it explains, you can achieve 80% of the outcome by inputting 20% of input.
I had a habit of dedicating myself to enormous habit changes rather than building micro-habits. I wanted to lose weight, so I started doing Yoga’s because I knew some forms of Yoga that I was doing daily and started applying Advance level. There is always a beginner, intermediate and Advance level.
Developing a micro-habit:
The first step to keep in mind is to develop a micro-habit. Instead of making a massive change, start with baby steps. If you want to start your day with some exercising, begin with five squats a day and don’t aim for 30 or 50. Follow for two weeks and increase it by 10% when you can achieve consistency. When you set the smallest bar, you are never overwhelmed with your routine. You will be more enthusiastic to proceed ahead. You will see yourself getting more results in making small changes in your regime.
Apply a simple Yes or No rule:
I don’t create many tasks in my To-do Lists. I used to plan my whole month, but it was hard to follow. I realized that it was making me anxious when I was unable to achieve the tasks or goals. I started keeping it short and made it to a week. I write down a To-Do list of what my day will look like, and I write Yes when I achieve it and No when I don’t. It is a smooth process to track the progress.
Pro-tip: You can also create a group of people and share your To-Do lists, keep a watch on each other, not to compare but to motivate each other. It is easy to notice the blockers. You will also observe which tasks take more time, and you will master time management by following a simple and effective process.
The Pomodoro technique was a game-changer for me. I have installed an application called “Productivity” on my phone. It has a timer of 25 minutes to do the task and a break of 5 minutes. You stay focused, less distracted, and you get so much time to balance your work-life with this simple and effective technique. I was insane when I was multi-tasking and never finished a single task in time. I ran out of time, which brought so much frustration that I cursed myself at the end of the day. It never occurred to me how to utilize time focusing on a single task by implementing such a technique. During the break, I go to my balcony and get some fresh air. I cherish the view of the sky, enjoy the rainy season, check my pending tasks, send a GIF or meme to my friend. A five-minute break was supercharging to get me going for other assignments.
I wish I could know that by following three simple steps, my life would get trouble-free. Lately, I have understood that achieving productivity is not about completing all the tasks but bringing value to your life by doing them each day.
Don’t run behind achieving big goals until you are not ready to make small changes. Never compare your life with someone else’s life. Take baby steps. Build micro-habits, keep yourself hydrated. Sleep for at least 6-7 hours to keep your energy levels charged. Take your own time. I have made a note in my mind, “Never run a race; build your life at your own pace”.