Unproductive days are okay. Sometimes you deserve to relax. Other times you have to be productive out of necessity.
Regardless, you can’t work all day, every day for 365 days of the year.
Life happens. Unforeseen events and circumstances occur. That’s how it always has been. How it always will be.
We can have the best intentions. We can make elaborate plans. But our intentions don’t always result in the things we expected or desired. Besides, plans fall through.
It’s tough to feel like you’ve let a perfectly good day go by. As if you wasted 24 hours. But if you were happy, if you spent some of the time doing what you wanted, would you say that’s wasted time? Or would you think it’s time well spent?
Perhaps you weren’t productive in the morning. But what’s stopping you from having a productive afternoon or evening?
Maybe you spend 8 hours sleeping and lying in bed every day, give or take. But if you work hard for even just 2 or 6 hours, you can still get a lot done.
Never let one bad thing have a domino effect on everything else. Never allow one negative person to ruin all the positives in your life.
In a perfect world, everything would be optimized all the time. But you don’t live in a perfect world. So one day you might prioritize blogging over reading. Another day it could be writing over editing. What’s the problem?
At least you’re making progress on something. And you’re doing what makes you happy.
Productivity isn’t just about getting a lot of work done. Because there’s so much more to life than just work.
Maybe working easy on the right things is better than working hard on the wrong things.
You’re probably a productive writer. At least more productive than the person writing this blog post. So why am I telling you how to get work done? Because I can.
Have a plan.
If you don’t know what you want to do, how are you supposed to accomplish anything? So decide the night before what you’re going to write tomorrow. Maybe it’s a poem or a short story. You can also take a few minutes in the morning to think about the tasks you’re hoping to complete before the day is over. Edit a chapter of your novel. Make a graphic for that blog post. You get the idea. Then get to work.
Include tiny rewards.
Reward yourself after you write a page or edit a scene, not before. That way you have motivation to do stuff and get things done.
Take many breaks.
It might sound counter-intuitive, but it isn’t. Your brain needs rest. Just don’t let that small break turn into a long spell of inactivity.
Stop procrastinating and start working.
There’s a lot going on at any given time in my student life and writerly world. But right now I’m even busier than usual.
I have a lot of things to work on and not enough time to do everything. If only I had more hours in the day. If only I didn’t need to sleep every night. If only I could be productive all the time. Oh, the possibilities then would be truly endless.
Also because my attention span is shorter than a goldfish, I felt the need to open a dozen tabs and work on multiple projects at once.
I ended up doing a little of everything. But I don’t feel like I did anything. At least nothing substantial.
For some reason, I just can’t seem to concentrate on one task at a time.
My solution? Go to sleep.
My friends are the reason why I’m not productive.
They’re the reason why I never get much work done.
Why I take forever to finish books.
Why I only write a little every day.
Why I publish such short blog posts.
Don’t worry. I blame myself for everything. I take full responsibility.
But it’s so much easier to blame other people. Or pretend to anyway. I need to keep my sanity in tact, okay?
So I uninstalled YouTube from my phone.
I deleted the app.
I was spending way too much time watching videos and not enough time writing essays.
Last night. November 19th.
I make very questionable decisions the later it gets in the day. I was stretching, thought about deleting distractions from my life, and followed through with it.
Also, I needed to be more productive with all the procrastination I’ve done recently. What do you know? I still found ways to procrastinate today.
I’ll let you know when I give in to downloading YouTube back onto my phone.
It’s okay to take a break.
Even from the things you love. Or the people you love.
I took a long time to learn that I don’t have to be doing work all the time. I can’t do everything at once. I can’t do it all in one day. But I can do a little bit over a long span of time. Discipline wins.
And even though I love blogging and dancing, sometimes I need to take a break. Maybe my body needs some time to recover. My mind needs some time to relax. Hey, I’m perfectly okay with that. I’m human after all.
I also like to think taking breaks leads to increasing productivity.
So take a break already.
Read while squatting.
Write while standing.
Talk while skipping.
Listen while stretching.
Or just get more exercise by actually exercising, Herminia, and not trying to cut corners. Just a suggestion.
Can you tell I’m really, really lazy?
You know what my problem is?
I can’t bring myself to work on the most difficult task first.
It does wonders for my productivity when I spend all my time doing the tiny things. And then I don’t get anything important done.
I have yet to find a solution that works for me. Or I’m just lazy. It’s definitely the latter.