So the other day as I was wondering where all the hours had gone to, I got to thinking again about productivity, but this time about procrastination and why sometimes we struggle to get things done even if we’re not doing any of the things that might be seen as traditional procrastination activities. And the word that popped up is one that we’ve talked about a lot as a world over the past few months, and that’s fear.
Do we delay or struggle to get things done because we fear having nothing to do when it’s done? Do we fear running out of work? Do we fear missing details (even if they may not be as important as we think they are)? Are we stuck on the concept of working a specific set of hours and are fearful of what someone will say if we don’t work those full hours? Are we doing things in ways that take longer because we’re afraid of doing them in a different way that someone might not agree with or approve of?
I think on one level or another one or several of those fears do resonate whether we want to admit it or not. Some fears are healthy because they help us be prepared or warn us when something bad or dangerous is in our path, so it should not be our goal to get rid of all our fears. But if you’re feeling rather rational and logical at the moment, you can come up with “well, then…” answers in response to each of those fears, like listing all the other things we could get done (including resting) the sooner we give our full attention to our activities. Depending on the situation we may be able to then conquer those fears and get back up to speed on our productivity right then and there, or at least begin the process of making changes and catching ourselves when we fall back into old, unproductive patterns in the coming days and weeks.
Of course it all comes down to whether or not we feel a desire to conquer those fears and/or be more productive. After the last few months many of us have learned that there’s a lot to be said for both getting stuff done and having time off, so now might be exactly the right time to break through old habits and practices that hurt your productivity or hold you back. What have you been learning or experiencing about your productivity levels lately?