One Bag Nation

Does Being Productive Mean “doing more work”?

Posted on: July 28, 2008

Today Dustin Wax at posted about Productivity Myths that can hold you back.

For example, Myth #4: Productivity Means More Work

I’m with Dustin on this one: to me, the beauty of being truly productive is that you get more time for fun and relaxation, not that you try to cram more work into less time.

While it’s true that I may have the World’s Longest To Do List, if I have a really focused and productive day, I give myself a pat on the back and pick up my knitting, read a book, hang out with family and friends, go to bed early, etc.

I don’t hurry over to my list, eagerly looking for more stuff to do!

What do you think? Is being productive an end in itself for you, or does being productive spur you on to do more? Do you feel that fear of having to do more work stops you from becoming more productive?

Call me a slacker, but this resistance to being productive never occurred to me! And check out the article; it offers some other interesting ideas.


11 Responses to "Does Being Productive Mean “doing more work”?"

Hi Ann,

Hmmmm. Productivity to me means doing things efficiently. It may mean picking up a glass off of the table as you’re headed to the kitchen to cook dinner, or multi-tasking, i.e. doing a load of laundry while you’re blogging. Putting thought into the tasks at hand can often lead to greater productivity and give us more time to play.

I’m with Barbara: I am productive, I streamline tasks, so that I have more time to do the things I enjoy doing.

I’m with you on this one! Being product doesn’t necessarily mean doing more work. It means accomplishing your work in less time so you have more hours to relax and not worry about what “needs” to get done…

For me, scheduling my work helps me be productive while feeling okay w/ leaving my additional work for the next day. Once I get everything off of today’s to-do list, I’m comfortable calling it quits until the next day. I’m not sure how I would feel if I just had one long list. I think it would be too overwhelming. Mini daily lists are much more manageable and rewarding for me.

Hello All: I think we’re all on the same page here.

I thought it was interesting – and surprising – that someone would resist becoming more productive because it meant they’d have to work harder, rather than giving them time for things they enjoy.

@Barbara: your example of picking up the dirty glass as you walk by struck me. I think that for many folks who strugge with clutter and general disarray, that kind of thing doesn’t come automatically. I think I was one of those people until pretty recently!

But what a difference it makes when you become more aware and just do little things like that! Hmmm I feel a post coming on!

Hi Ann: How about this as a definition of productivity: “do less, achieve more” (it’s actually the title of a book I have which I love).

Oh, I am so not looking for more work when I complete tasks I assigned myself. Nooooo….I am pumped and ready to have some fun! Productivity to me is going like gang busters at a task, say cleaning a room, then standing back and revelling in a job well done.

@Marelisa: I like that, in fact I have a book called “Work Less, Make More” which talks about the 80/20 Rule, among others.

@Panther: me too!

I think “being productive” in terms of my life is just “feeling like i’ve gotten something done today.” So if I did my laundry, made dinner, cleaned the kitchen, vacuumed, or just talked to one of my friends, I feel pretty productive. I think it’s about feeling like you’ve completed something instead of just making a dent in it.

[…] Does Being Productive Mean “doing more work”? « One Bag Nation […]

[…] terms of the relationship between productivity and simplicity, my aim is to streamline my activities, cut out unnecessary tasks and commitments, identify what […]

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