The Importance of Being Productive

Monday rolls around every week and there’s nothing we can do about it. The weekend provides the opportunity for relaxation, book reading, sports and all the things you love to do with no eye on the clock. But when the first day of the week arrives, we are back in the saddle, where tasks, goals, and objectives live.

So how do we all deal with these assignments? As many of us now work from home and have to incorporate the at-home muscle memory of living in your home with being a productive employee. It sounds like the process happens organically, however it can be frustrating and confusing. How do we prioritize our day/week/month?

Stress creeps into our lives, no matter the situation. It gets worse when we procrastinate, multi-task beyond our comfort zone, and stretch ourselves thin, to the point of becoming completely overwhelmed by the week’s end. It happens to me, it happens to everyone.
Journalist and author Celeste Headlee has an elegant and simple solution: track your time and make a schedule. The process seems like something you’ve probably told yourself before, however she takes it further than your average consideration.

By tracking time, Headlee encourages purchasing a diary to track everything, not just what you do on the clock. It seems like a potentially excessive investment of time in the first place, however Headlee kept a diary for 3 weeks, outlining how much time is actually wasted on things you’d rather not admit for doing quite so long.

Hey, hey, hey!

You know what those things are. Your vices. Social obligations that cross the border of taking a break into a huge amount of time wasted every day/week/month. By documenting the time spent, the reality can settle in. Headlee provides the solution of making a schedule to being more productive.

Make a schedule. Outline your day. Set expectations for what you would like to do, print it out and adhere as best you can. Adjust, if necessary. By giving yourself this structure you can set yourself up to not only becoming a more productive version of yourself, but also with less of the common stress that hold you back.

Celeste Headlee is onto something here. Her book, ‘Do Nothing - How to Break Away from Overworking, Overdoing and Underliving’ explains her ideology in greater detail. I will put the reading into my schedule and so should you. In the meantime, watch her TED Talk for another snippet of inspiration. Just be sure to add the video to your social media time for the day.