Getting Sh*t Done: 3 Lessons on Productivity

Getting Sh*t Done: 3 Lessons on Productivity

 

Thinking back to exam time in University, I remember endless hours of staring at flashcards and scanning through my professor’s presentations, wishing I had a photographic memory. There seemed to be a stereotype around studying: if you didn’t have big, purple bags under your eyes, greasy hair, and a coffee mug attached to your hand, you weren’t doing it right.  We were conditioned to believe no sleep and constant studying would result in the greatest success. As I’m growing into adulthood I’ve realized time and productivity have no correlation. Just like in fitness, you can spend hours and hours on the treadmill, but a 45 minute HIIT session will most likely leave you with better results. The tricky part is mastering what works best for you. Here is a smorgasbord of information on how people found their groove:

Sometimes, just thinking about your week can be overwhelming. Realistically you’re working from 9 - 5, will have to spend 2 hours in transport getting to and from work, you’ve scheduled dinner and drinks with friends, and you’ll want to squeeze in a couple of classes at the gym. On top of that, invitations keep flooding in and you’re already exhausted before the week has begun. In Sarah Knight’s TED talk, The Life Changing Magic of Not Giving a Fudge*, she teaches us how to best allocate our time in order to achieve the greatest happiness. She asks us to visualize our plans and ask ourselves one important question, “does it bring you joy or does it annoy?” She says it is all very simple, we’ve been cultured to feel obligated and guilty when it comes to invitations, but if you turn down an invitation “in a timely and polite manner” it is completely acceptable and you should embrace your newcome free time.  In short, if you don’t want to do it, don’t. Don’t fill up your schedule with things you aren’t excited about. You will be most productive if you are doing the things you love. Selfishness is making a comeback people.

In the beloved Christmas classic The Holiday, Arthur Abbott said it best, “You are a leading lady, but for some reason you are behaving like the best friend.” We love Instagram and Snapchat as much as you, but try putting down the social media. Instead of constantly comparing yourself and focusing on what you haven’t done, focus on what you are doing. This mindset will lead to increased productivity because you will feel more positive about yourself and your accomplishments, instead of comparing them to a platform of curated perfection. Plus, imagine how much time you would save if you only checked your socials once or twice a day!

Down to the nitty gritty, when you are actually sat at your desk and you know you have a million and one things to do, how do you stay on task? Entrepreneur magazine helped us figure out smash your to do list. First and foremost, make a to do list. We know it can be annoying, but if you sit down at the beginning of the day and go through everything you need to do, you will feel so much more accomplished when the day is done. This guarantees you will not waste time transitioning and that no task will be left behind. Get fancy with your list, prioritize things in order of importance and estimate how long each task should take. Nothing is more painful than dragging something out for hours that could’ve been completed in twenty minutes. Personally, I have to keep in mind that it is nice to strive for perfection, but sometimes good enough will suffice. Get ready to tick off all those boxes!