Being productive, and moreover managing productivity, is not something we inherently poses. It’s not a tree, but rather a television set – something we defined as an abstract concept and learned, through time, to categorize it. And no matter how good we’ve become in the process, it is still somewhat counterintuitive.
And while there are many ways to tip the scale of productive output in your favor, some of which discussed here on this site, for the majority of you who would rather tilt towards intuition, here is a very simple method of staying productive and, in fact, increasing your rate of productivity.
Understanding the foundation of productivity
If you do a huge amount of work on a task that is not important to you, it is a waste of time. Hence, we cannot talk about being productive.
And doing something good, investing in it, it doesn’t make it important.
What makes a task important is the correlation of that task with your goals. If they match, then we are talking productive output.
So in order to even discuss productivity you have to know your goal, your destination. Naïve as this may sound, it is responsible for almost half the effort when it comes to productivity.
Expanding the concept
Now, considering you have your goal all set, the concept expands as to encompass how you feel about every task connected with it.
Let me jump over vague rhetoric and explain.
How many times have you went over daily to-do lists?
Answer: math is hard.
The thing is, regardless of the time and resources invested, it always feels like you are missing out on full productive potential. Doesn’t it?
You cannot decide whether or not you did a good job, even at the time of writing the list. Now here is the tipping point:
You can do only one thing and it will all change; dramatically. And that one thing is adding emotion.
But wait, before you mistake this article with another one where flowery prose tends to dominate, hear this out.
The simple productivity improvement technique
Say you have a certain goal, and you are sitting down, going over what you should do on daily basis as to move towards it.
Here is how you can quickly become goal setting savvy, and action oriented at the same time.
Figure out one action you can do today, that will bring you closer to your goal. No big deal, one action.
Now here is the thing – once you figure out which action you are going to do, ask yourself one simple question:
“If this is the only thing that I’m going to do today, would I be satisfied?”
If we are talking real productivity, you know the answer right away. If something is really bringing you towards your desired outcome, then that thing alone can make your entire day. That thing alone can suffice. That thing alone can be worth doing, and investing into no holds barred.
If not, you know we are not talking about real productivity.
You see, adding only one layer of emotion and attaching your intuitive feeling towards what is rather rational thinking, you can easily decide about the return of investment in almost every action that you make.
In that regard intuition can teach you volumes about productivity. Or to paraphrase- your heart already knows what is only a mere distraction on the one hand, and what is really worth doing on the other.
Think about it. If you can do only one thing today, and be truly satisfied, what will that be?
When you figure it out, you know you are going to be productive beyond any measure.