August 12, 2014

Day 72: Four Habits of Really Productive People

If you want to fool people into thinking that you're super productive, look no further: here are four things you can copy from the true productivity machines among us. You know, the ones who have kids, write novels, cook things, work out, get 8 hours of sleep a night, and somehow still have time for makeup.

Spoiler alert: Sitting around with a cup of tea and Googling "Habits of Productive People" isn't one of them. (Not that I'd know from experience or anything though.)

After your morning tea, of course.  But once you've been appropriately caffeinated, tackle the thing you dread most on your to-do list first thing in the morning. You're mentally sharpest in the morning and getting it out of the way will set a tone for the rest of your day.  Specifically, an "I've got my shiz together" tone which is ideal for getting more shiz done.

Unless you've been too busy scrolling through Twitter to notice, you've probably heard this one over and over.  Multitasking is a myth (I know, first Santa, now this?!).  In reality, you're actually just "serial tasking," i.e. switching from task to task very quickly.  It sounds awesome but it really isn't; by being a serial tasker, you're not giving your full attention to any of your tasks.

I know this to be 100% true; I can't even write a blog post while How I Met Your Mother is on (Derrick will back me up).  Trying to focus on two things at once is like some sick form of elementary school algebra: one plus one results in zero.  Don't believe me?  Maybe you'll believe these guys.

This one surprised me but is obvious once I thought about it.  This interesting article made some good arguments for why being busy might actually help your productivity.  Evidently, some of the most creative people (like T. S. Eliot) had day jobs that limited their writing time to whenever they could cram it in.  The article says that,

I guess this means that if I ask for more overtime, my blog might get cooler?

Had to.  There are a lot of articles out there that give scientific reasons for why waking up early leads to more productivity but it isn't exactly earth shattering news; early risers have a head start on the day and are the ones getting the worms and all that crap.  In the same line as number one, just doing it seems to be the theme here; just get up and get going, then take over the world.

Even better if you're up early to get some exercise in.  That might just be the biased runner in me, though.


I know this was a long and uncharacteristically serious post, so I hope that wasn't too Dr. Phil for you.  I, however, personally feel much more productive after writing this.  Next I think I'll Google habits of really rich people and see what that'll do for me.