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Are you productive or just busy?

Let’s be real, some days you are going from task to task just barely keeping everything going. Well, you’re doing a great job at keeping yourself busy. Filling your schedule up with meetings, tasks, and to-do’s does not mean that you will have a productive day. You have accomplished making yourself very busy. I bet you, like us, are really good at it! Packing our schedule from eyes open to collapse in bed, we know how to stay busy. Are you losing productivity because you’re trying to be busy? Here are some questions to ask that will help you determine if what you are doing day to day and decide if it is busy work or productive time.

  1. Is this task helping me meet my goals? You have to know what you are trying to accomplish. Go from busy to productive by screening the tasks that aren’t in line with your goals. If it isn’t helping you get there – do you need to be doing it?
  2. Does this have to be done by me? Sometimes the best thing you can do to increase your productivity is to do less! Yup, outsource, ask for help when a task is just keeping you busy, but destroying your productivity.
  3. What can I do ahead of time to set myself up for a productive day/week/month? Preparation is so important to a productive week! Meal planning and prep (check out our guide here) is a great example of increasing your productivity by getting good nutritious meals in your belly. Other great examples are: setting out your clothes for each day, stacking like tasks together on your time block.
  4. What are my biggest time wasters and distractions? Removing time wasters from your environment during “productive” hours might just be the key to your success! In my corporate life, I often would find an empty conference room to get a few hours of uninterrupted work done. So, say no to Instagram, don’t take calls or respond to text messages, shut down the email, and let people know you are getting some work done.
  5. Do I need to say “NO” to this? It is really really probable you say yes to things you shouldn’t. You over commit and what you actually need to be accomplishing is what suffers. You have heard it before, JUST SAY NO.

If you are feeling really busy but like you aren’t accomplishing much, its time to evaluate what you have going on. Ask yourself these questions and start ditching the busyness for focused productivity.