What if every day were as productive as today? How would your month look? Your year? Your career?
I've heard this question asked a lot in the health and fitness communities. What if every day you had the same diet, or workout routine as you did today (intensity-wise, of course it's important to switch things up), where would your body be in the future? So, it got me thinking, we can implement this same mantra into productivity.
Now this is a judgement-free post, because let me tell you, I'm a pro at procrastination. And not only do I procrastinate, I have a slight obsession with multi-tasking. You'll never see me performing one task on its own.
But then there are those days where I write out my list, and start crossing off the items one by one. And I don't even skip the difficult or "boring" tasks, I get through them all! And at the end of the day I feel accomplished, satisfied, and proud. I think to myself how much work I would be able to get done if all my days included pumping out my tasks and concentrating fully on what's right in front of me.
So, I start the next week off just like that. I get into the office on Monday, write down my list and get to work. By lunch time, I've already zipped through half my list, craving more. And I finish my day off strong. I push the Staples' "This Is Easy" button (okay, maybe only in my head) and head home pumped for the week ahead.
Then I wake up the next morning. Maybe my alarm went off late, or maybe I burnt my toast, but from the moment I wake up, I'm not feeling it. I brush it off and head into the office ready to get started on my list. But things come up, I chat a little longer than expected with a co-worker, and I make a coffee run (hey, Starbucks holiday drinks are back in stock, what can a girl do?), and before I know it, my day has run out.
I look at my list. Sure, some tasks are crossed off, but I certainly haven't been as productive as the day before.
"What if every day were like today?" I start asking myself. If every day were like this one, I would get nothing done in a year, and I might end up being Starbucks' number one customer! And then I get bummed out, and let the negative thoughts pester. And we all know that negativity begets negativity, so now I'm in this cycle I can't stop.
Have you had these thoughts yourself?
What I've learned is not to beat myself up. It sounds easy, but it takes practice. Yes, a productive day every day is the dream. But it's also not reality (just like eating the "perfect diet" every day isn't realistic). Having a good balance ensures you don't burn out and let's you be human. Instead of using one single day as the gold standard, I take an average of my week or my month to use as a comparison. And then I check in. Have I been as productive this month as I was last month? If not, what stood in my way and what can I push aside to ensure next month is better?
Keeping a positive mindset is the only way I get through those challenging, grey days. And being from Vancouver, let me tell you, there are lots of grey days.
So, what if every week were like this week? What would you accomplish?
Stay productive, Vancouver ✌