At this point in history, we can not keep up with the rate of change happening around us. And it is going to get faster and faster. People are training to do things that may not necessarily exist in the next fifteen years. What we need to ponder over is how we can alter the human operating systems to not let this rate of change get ahead of us. And, thus, master the art of productivity.
Is it by taking out a fresh page and penning down your tasks? Do you also feel – a sudden urge to get out of your comfort zone and see a spectrum of growth? So you list down what you are to do. For the next three days, you are pumped up with this gusto and enthusiasm to get things done. Next, you see yourself googling five productivity hacks of Elon Musk, and you feel like you are getting there. You get into that Silicon Valley mindset and inherit a hacker mentality. Moreover, you know you are going to smash whatsoever comes your way. What happens next? Well, Life comes along, and bang!
Today and Tomorrow – A Vicious Cycle.
Everybody has a plan until they receive a punch in the face. What the contention is that people do everything and put their best foot forward to expect the Silicon Valley lifestyle as it apparently does not exist. Yet, it does not work. It is time to take a long breath and just accept that it is another trap. The whole nine yards of successful billion-dollar lifestyle, and almost ninety-five percent of the TED talks, and everything about changing, hacking, and conquering, just does not work. Evidently, Life is an unknown functionality of time.
This person with five productivity hacks thought he might be the next person to get things done and deliver his hacks tomorrow. But, what he did not realize is that he lives in this fictional land. Where ninety-nine percent of all human productivity happens, and then tomorrow is now again. We are the same person altogether. The momentary ardor is hence lost. Before you know it, the tomorrow of today is yet, again today!
Life is Time; Time is Life
There are two basic functionalities in life that we deal with. One is Time, and the other is Work. One of them is eternal while the other is not. Oh no, you got it wrong. The endless one is work, not Time unless you have some supernatural powers. If you are not God, well, then you have a limit to everything. You can do as much work as you want, you can be over-worked and under-worked as well. You can not manage something infinite. However, you can manage something finite, Time. When you get the hang of it, you can actually see yourself getting better. Subsequently, productivity is bound to occur.
Productivity – Quality or Quantity?
Let me introduce you to Beck. She owns her own business. She makes and sells birdhouses. Foremost, she gathers all that she needs to build one. It includes wood, paint, nails, tools, and labor. She takes about an hour to make one birdhouse. Gradually, with experience, Beck discovers better ways to build it. By rearranging her production process, she can build more birdhouses at the same time. Moreover, she develops skills that allow her to complete each step in lesser time. Consequently, she could make two or even three birdhouses within an hour. Beck has now enhanced her productivity, or has she? Yes, Beck has. But, does that apply to everyone?
Mostly, people feel that productivity is about getting more things done in a shorter amount of time. Honestly, that is not the definition one should adhere to. The best kind of productivity is about getting the right things done, and not just more things are done. Remember, literally, anyone can be busy. You do not need an education or experience to be busy. Therefore, have a lot of things on your plate or get a lot of things done. However, to be a productive individual, you need to get the right things done.
Chipmunks over Humans?
Productive people have a sort of love affair with time. So what is it exactly that makes someone on the right side of time? Or what is it in someone that makes time their foe? Well, this is quite a tricky question to answer. What if I open a different perspective to you all? Time does not really exist. It is indeed a human construct. We created time.
Explicitly, squirrels and chipmunks do not have much idea of time. Of course, they know that the Sun rises, and the Sun goes down. They also know that it rains. However, they do not think the way we do. They do not keep track of their birthdays, for instance. Only humans are capable of that. Well, it is kind of unfortunate because you are only as old as you think you are. That is the way squirrels look at it. And absolutely no one is arguing with them about it. However, humans know better. Some find time as their enemy. While the others confide in time as an acquaintance.
Time (and tide) waits for none, or does it?
An old Spanish saying goes, “There is more time than life.” This is a wonderful, way to look at it. This is exactly what we can associate with a productive person. The whole nine yards of this approach is to consider Life as short, but wide. This is another productive way to look at things. People often ask other successful people in their field, “How do you do what you do?” A pretty simple answer is that they actually do it. They do not do anything else. Unlike you, they do not get on two boats and struggle to find a balance. Moreover, often people have no idea where their time went.
Everyone gets to share time equally. What time management classes tell you is that you keep track of your time. You think you sleep six hours a day, but when you analyze it every week you will see that the figures do not add up. You might be sleeping ten hours a day. Studies show that how people believe they spent their time is way too different from how it is actually spent. By all intents and purposes, a productive person knows exactly how long it takes to do something. In fact, even while writing does not just sit down when you have no ideas. You might just end up staring at the ceiling and tripping into delusions. When you know what you have to write, then it is just a matter of how fast can you type.
Trick the Brain
Productive people can also be categorized into two subheads. The happy ones and the unhappy ones. The unhappy ones never figured out the psychology of creativity. As a result, they constantly are surprised, yet upset about it. Happy ones are those who have it figured out already. The brain needs its dose of work eventually. So, the happy productive ones prepare the next project that they have to work upon after finishing this one. Hence, the mind does not mind getting rid of the first one. You have eliminated the postmortem depression. And it is simply because you have figured out how your creative mind works. It is happiness that inspires productivity.
The clock runs alike for everyone. Everyone gets to live every bit of a second. The lock, stock, and barrel come down to you making use of time. Do not just lose it. If you ask people how many hours are in a week? Only two out of ten people can answer the question right off the top of their heads. Why? Because they have never really multiplied twenty-four by seven and realized exactly how many hours there are in a week. Productivity is never an accident. It is always the outcome of commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort.
Mahatma Gandhi aptly asserted, “Infinite striving to be the best man is man’s duty; it is its own reward. Everything else is in God’s hands”
Get on your enthusiasm wings and feathers of wanting to do better mindset. What is stopping you from beginning your journey of growth? Analyse if you have that x-factor of Productivity in you. And the time is NOW!