Monday, 9 January 2012

Get to Know Your Productive Self

Productivity is what you sculpt from the life you are given. 

It is your creative exploration of the world. You are the product of your own productivity (or, perhaps, lack of.) In that sense, then, productivity is vital; it is the measure of how much you, as an individual, are getting out of life.

Getting in touch with your productive self continues on from what I’ve previously been saying on consciousness, and you’ll be happy to know that being more conscious, or self-aware, is a trick that works just as well on developing your positive habits, as it does on rejecting your bad habits.

It is an everyday effort to know and better understand the way that we work, but it is an effort that I believe is worth it. We are our own most precious assets in our own lives, and we need perceptive fine-tuning to achieve our best. Think of yourself as a Formula 1 race car – you wouldn’t get very far being neglected and misunderstood, would you? Understand yourself, optimise yourself, and then work with that self toward a more fulfilling future.

♥ Don’t be a stranger to yourself
♥ You are the product of your own productivity
♥ Like a Formula 1 race car, you need perceptive fine-tuning.

Suss out your productive self.

It’s time to discover exactly which elements line up to make you productive. Think of the last time you were really productive, in anything: what was the situation? What was happening around you? How did you feel?

My productivity tends to be the result of one, or a combination, of these elements:

♥ A bright, sunny day
♥ Waking up early
♥ A neat and organised space around me
♥ Quiet, alone time

But these, though important, are not things I can always control; they are exterior influences that I don’t want to allow to limit my productivity. Although it is important to be aware of how these external elements affect me, they do not make up or drive my productive inner self. So, what does?

1. A real, genuine desire to complete the project (focusing on the end result)
2. A belief in what I’m doing, or being sure of its purpose
3. Having someone to answer to other than myself (i.e. a tutor, boss, or you as my readers!)
4. Telling myself I won’t get another chance to get on with the project because of other upcoming commitments

I can learn a lot from this information. From the first point I see that I need to find an authentic desire to complete the project. From the second point I see that belief in the purpose of the project is also important to my productive self. From the third point I see that feeling accountable is also a vital factor. And from the fourth point I realise that I require limiting my time for real productivity.

So, my productive self is: an accountable, limited, desirous, believer. Now that I know that, I can work with it. These are the four ‘check points’ to my productivity. I can plan projects around them and I can start seeing real results.

When I begin any project I will be equipped to ask myself the following questions, and answer them positively or adapt the project or my mindset accordingly. If I’m flagging with a project, I can refer back to the points to see where I’m slipping up.

1. Am I truly desirous to complete this project?
2. Do I believe/ see the purpose in the project?
3. Have I made myself accountable?
4. Have I got a limited time-frame to help me plan the project through to completion?

In your notebook, complete the same process to define your productive self in between 3-5 points.

Share your findings in the comments to inspire other people’s success (and make yourself accountable!)


Cara said...

I need to have a clear task & structured breaks, bright, BRIGHT lights, and enough space to spread (I have a 6-seat dining table as my desk and that is sometimes not enough!).

Megan said...

Cara - Structured breaks is a good tip, otherwise we are liable to face burn-out!

Kathy said...

I need to have a detailed plan on how I will accomplish my goal .
I need to be organized and have all materials or what I need prepared ahead of time .

Autumn said...

I always need light! Plus some good quiet time helps!

The Dotty One said...

My points are:

* belief that the task is important/worthwhile
* focus on the end result
* enjoyment/interest during task
* a feeling that i am getting something (learning/growing) from completing the task
* a bit of pressure - either external or internal
* an organised, structured approach including sorting the environment around me

I am having trouble narrowing this down to one word points like you have though!

Stef said...

This is a great exercise!
What gets me going most is knowing that something good will happen if I finish something - may it be that I bribed myself with watching a movie, or simply the satisfaction finally crossing something off my to-do list. I am also easily distracted, so switching off my internet connection really helps.

gluedtoapost said...

Some of mine are very similar to yours, Megan--I work best when I have a lot to do and I know that I need to get up early, focus, and work hard in order to complete all of the amazing stuff I have planned! Here are my points:

- Do I have a limited time frame to motivate me?
- Do I believe the project has value?
- Have I made myself accountable (your words put it so succinctly!)
- Do I have a detailed plan for completing it?

Maria K. said...

Megan, I am enjoying this entire series tremendously and am getting ready to share on all my social channels. Fantastic work!

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