This article series is divided into 4 parts:
- Part I – Current part will give you an answer to one question ‘Why should I care about being productive’?
- Part II – 10 strategies that help increase productivity
- Part III – 11 time management tools & tips for power users
- Part IV – 3 steps to improve your focus ability during work
In case you’re a god of self-discipline and don’t need any plan because you are master of time management, you’re good to go. And you definitely should skip this article series — don’t waste your time! If you’re not then let’s get started.
You’re running out of time.
One of the biggest impacts on boosting my productivity was one article written by Tim Urban. Basically, it’s all about just one picture from his article – Life calendar. I strongly recommend to stop for a moment, read the whole article and come back here. Don’t even try to continue without that.
The idea is that every row illustrates one year until you get 90. If you’ll be lucky enough, at that age you’ll probably won’t care about that calendar so it’s a good time limit for this purpose. And there is one single description which literally hurts and change the way you think about your life. Let’s recall this thought (just in case you skipped the article I’d recommended).
“It kind of feels like our lives are made up of a countless number of weeks. But there they are—fully countable—staring you in the face.”Tim Urban
I’m convinced that most of the people didn’t think about it that way. You might think, ‘I’m smarter than rest of the people’, but it will probably be just lying to yourself. Of course, you might sometimes have this feeling that you’re getting older and older, but it’s different than an idea of x weeks left, which is a concrete number (more or less accurate but still straightforward). And this number affects our mind better. It becomes more than “someday everything just ends, and you know – it’s in fuuuture. No. It becomes almost tangible. Just recall how fast weeks pass by. One by one.
To sum up, a statement ‘I’ve got plenty of time and I don’t care’ after that changes to ‘With a predetermined amount of time, starting from now on, it’s time to be careful in choosing what to do’. That is the core of the first W –WHY.
“4,680 weeks are all you have. Are you making the most of them? ”Tim Urban
We have no influence on the passing time but with Tim’s advice in mind, we can do a lot with the rest of the time. If you want to check now how much weeks of your average 90 you’d use, go at http://count.life/
Why is it important to boost productivity
If I had to point out resource that rules every other, I’ll point the time. Without it (with current knowledge/possibilities) any other element even doesn’t exist for our perception. Moreover, it binds all areas into a single manageable piece.
Now, more than before we know that time is ticking and you might wonder what to do with that what we’ve just learned. Our tool to manage time is productivity. As a whole, it seems to help to organize only time itself, but it’s tricky. When you don’t properly schedule your time, the other factors will definitely stay in the same poor condition as before. In sum
productivity is the golden key in managing our most precious resource — time, which seems to be controlling all over the rest.
We’re living in times where every single kitten and new gear is watching for our attention. Plus money. There are also things that are ruining our life silently – such as poor relations. Being productive means that you get rid of things like:
- free, unplanned time
- everyday distraction eg. social media, tv, kitten pics, shopping, movies etc.
- time-consuming work with no possibilities of self-development
- poor quality relations
- bad habits
- weak finance management
- mind overload – when you feel, your life is not under control
We will take a closer look at some of those examples during this series. Above we can see the list of life-consuming enemies which are also productivity enemies. That list doesn’t match everyone. Maybe even no element from the list above fits you (that is an excellent sign!) but everyone struggles with some non-productive things that can be improved. So the advice is to take them one by one and turn into habits. In one year, you can get control over most of it but remember: go to the next only if you feel that the previous one is part of you.
Why is it so important to be productive?
- Firstly as it was said: by taking control over your time, you gain better control over every other aspect of your life because they depend on it.
- Secondly, even if you’re meditating, taking life as it is, and don’t care about good /bad things you probably won’t just pass. Then you probably want to do something meaningful. Doing something has the best impact (for you, society or environment) if you do it as good as you can. Don’t confuse it with: as hard as you can, but in some cases, it’s always a good practice. Doing things right means doing things productively.
- If we’re productive than we can do a lot more things, or do them better and faster.
You may have noticed that I’d never used statements like “this allows you to fulfill your dreams”, “achieve your own goals” etc. I’ll explain why it doesn’t in a separate article, so stay tuned.
Now that we know why is it important to be productive, let’s dive into next part about 10 strategies that help increase productivity.
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