I have a crush on the concept of productivity. I’m in the phase where I want to surround myself with all things related to the topic. I read all the books and articles, try all the things and obsessively bring it up in conversation. Fortunately, it seems that the subject of productivity is incredibly popular right now and might even be having what I like to call “a moment”. This is fortunate as these days when I bring it up in casual conversation, ears perk and I get to enthusiastically talk about it for a few beats longer than I could have a few years ago. I enjoy this immensely but am, of course, a business coach, so I also get to talk to clients about it endlessly and spend my free time guiltlessly devouring books in the name of research.
As someone who reads about it constantly, I bet you ‘re wondering what my top tips are for leading a more productive life, right? Well if you’re not, I’m going to tell you anyway and I’m going use a bit of alliteration to do so to help you remember them. These are my 3 P’s of productivity:
- Plan. Without a plan, you are setting yourself up for failure. If you plan ahead, the moments when you’re tired, overwhelmed and overeager can be smoothly navigated. You will know what your priorities are, the tasks necessary to accomplish your goals and be able to enjoy your hobbies, family time and alone time without feeling like you should be working…because your work will be done! A little bit of planning can make your time spent working more efficient and make it so you can spend less time doing so.
- Process. As in…productivity is about the process of time management, goal setting and establishing habits. Even if it means the process of using your planning tools consistently and establishing the habit to do so. Things don’t always go as you thought they would, the ability to pivot (a 4th P!) and change direction quickly when something is not working can be a game changer. This also means that you need to keep trying things to see if they work. There are many, many ways to be productive, it’s part of the process to keep trying new methods and find what works for you. If something stops working, change it up. If something partially works for you, just use that part.
- Persist. You will not be productive if you give up. You must stick with it. If you have a day, a week or even a month, where you fall off the productivity horse, you must get back on it. You will not be productive without persistence. If someone asks me what my secret to being productive is, I always tell them that I don’t give up.
As with all of life, if at first, you don’t succeed, try, try again.