Be productive instead of busy

Being busy means doing stuff, being productive means getting stuff done. However, it seems we live in a world that rewards being busy and at times where being busy is praised and almost rewarded. Many of us are preoccupied with the notion that busy automatically translate into being productive. You are likely to run the risk of just feeling busy but without actually accomplishing much.

  • I used to be mentally and physically exhausted and felt like I never stopped
  • My days were ever rushed
  • I always felt overwhelmed and at times inundated with work
  • No matter how early, or how quick I tried to work, I never seemed to get anything accomplished
  • I used to get frustrated at the end of the day having spending my energy and achieved a few things.

Despite my input, I never achieved much and I despised this. After going through this quote, I figured what I was doing. I was being everywhere, had no focus, a million priorities but was just busy, busy being unproductive.

Ask yourself, which is better making the most out of a few hours and getting things done or taking all day’s hours and getting less accomplished. If you struggle with the answer, you are probably caught up like I was in the ‘busy’ mode, but for some of us the answer is now easy.

By being busy you are demonstrating a disturbing form of lazy thinking and thoughtlessness. You find yourself celebrating your mediocre performance as you can only do a lot of small things. What happens to the bigger few things where it matters most? You are a busy person if you answer the question by asking, but how could I have achieved them, my plate is always full, cant people realise how much work I have to do? The moment you find yourself in a ‘busy’ comfort zone means you are hardly productive.

It is true that as people we are limited to what we can achieve within the limits of time. With that in mind, it is paramount to effectively prioritise and set realistically achievable targets. They say if you have 3 priorities, you have priorities. However, when those priorities shoot off to 25, then you have a mess.

When you start a day with goals and objectives, you know you have been productive after getting quality work done and get closer to reaching all your goals. On the contrary, you can use up all the time looking busy but getting constantly distracted even by work that never allow you to achieve your set goals and targets.

How do I free up my time at work, business or even at home and enhance my productivity?

  • You should appreciate that you don’t get desired results by involving yourself even when you can automate some of the things. Some of the work can be done much easily by using software, engaging virtual assistants,
  • Be in love with planning, try and get demanding work by mid morning  and maximise on your multi-tasking abilities.
  • Identify activities that can be simultaneously accomplished, whether they are inclusive or exclusive. It helps to free up time.
  • Prioritise at least 3-5 things you really need to get done. Even a machine, also gets worn out, don’t try to be a superman. There are always unforeseen circumstances that are bound to creep in, wearing you out and making it difficult to accomplish things.

You can do well managing your own clutter, but opening doors and letting in a barrage of request might just be the worst thing. At times you need to eliminate possible sources of distraction at point go. Keep away from people who burden your day with never ending request but instead zero in on your goals. Often you can easily get distracted by colleagues, friends or family who dumps time consuming request on you. As a busy person you never take a glance but are quick to say yes to all request whist a productive person takes a cautious and measure approach.

It is a certainly a must to have knowledge of what disturbs you as a step in getting productive. Ever notice how curious and anxious you can be when you notice a new facebook notification, an Instagram message, a watsapp message or even an email. You are quick to drop everything and focus on that and quickly reply. Chances are, once you start dealing with your social media or emails, you end up spending longer than even planned leaving you less focused on important tasks.

Such daily distractions whilst they keep you busy can easily fool yourself to think that you are being productive. You can hardly focus on what really makes a difference but fill your time with things add little or no value. Such distractions can easily push you off your path.

Being busy can be overwhelming but unfortunately there is nothing to show for it. Stop getting busy and start getting productive, focused on what you should be doing, prioritise and learn to say no to avoid any distractions.

© 2017, sheconquers. All rights reserved.

14 Comments on Be productive instead of busy

  1. have tried a lot of advice on how to be more effective, this was more than helpful-simple things that you would think less of can change how we think and work. Bravo

  2. I was talking about this with my friends just a few weeks ago, agree with you on this, we enjoy being busy but are we bringing the results

  3. This is the signature approach by people I am friends with. Ever pretending to be busy but with hardly anything getting done.

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