The other day, someone was telling me how busy she has been and all that she has been doing. Her list of activities certainly made it sound as though she is busy, but she doesn’t seem to be productive. There is a big difference.
Although we can not be productive every moment, being aware of the difference between being busy and being productive can make you more effective and help you get more done. Your definition of productive may not be the same as mine, but I think I am being productive when my actions (1) generate income or (2) directly relate to reaching a goal.
There are lots of things that have to be done that do not fit that definition. The idea is to reduce the time you spend on non-productive “busy-work” and increase the time you spend being productive.
One of the best ways to do this is to eliminate the things you do that make you feel busy but do not really serve a purpose. Do you spend four hours comparing prices online so you can save $20 on a purchase?
Don’t create drama in your life either. Letting everything go until the last possible minute (or a little beyond) creates stress. And having to dump everything else and get something overnighted to meet a deadline disrupts your workflow. Plan ahead.
Can you streamline tasks to get them done more efficiently? Set up online banking and pay all of your bills at once. It only takes a few minutes, and you can get back to doing what is important. When I have to run errands, I do them all at once to save time (and gas).
Do you have a to-do list? Take a look at what is on your list for today. How many things are “busy-work” and how many will help you to be more successful? Make an effort to accomplish something productive every day. It will not only make you more successful, you will probably find your work more satisfying, too.