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  • Writer's pictureWhitney Kippes

Do We Need to Be More Productive?

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Do you have a productivity problem?

No, not the kind where you need to maximize your productivity every moment in every day.

The kind where you haven’t actually defined productivity for yourself. Like a lot of stuff in life, there’s a definition of productivity out there that may or may not be supporting your personal values. Your definition of what it means to be productive may not look like someone else’s fulfilling ass-kicking kind of day.

There’s a culture of self-help out there that pushes us to maximize every second of every day, optimizing everything from your winged eyeliner to your organizational system. But is milking every second of every day for the maximum possible how you want to define your life?

If you’re already feeling the pain from a crazy busy week (or year), maybe its important for you to make sure you’re squeezing the most out of each hour. But… maybe it is a sign that its time to take a step back and look at the big picture and what is stealing moments out of your life.

There is no way that you are not doing enough. You’re doing plenty. More than enough. But if you’re feeling like the hours and days keep ticking by and the big life goals and priorities just don’t seem to be getting any closer, maybe it’s time to consider adjusting your thought process on productivity.


If you are anything like me, “productivity” has long been limited exclusively to things that you don’t want to be doing. Maximizing workout impact. Minimizing re-writing a proposal for the fourth time. Optimizing each hour. Maybe now is the time to take a step back and see which aspects of life need to be optimized and which won’t ever benefit from that approach.

For me, that means optimizing tidying up by setting a timer and spending five minutes every day tackling a tiny piece of the problem, rather than letting me internal Allie Brosh shine and doing all the cleaning in one hyperactive spurt.

Credit to Allie Brosh and her book Hyperbole & A Half

On the other hand, it means that I’m no longer optimizing how conversations with friends go – I want to savor those moments and be wholly invested. So I’m taking my time savings elsewhere and investing it in what really matters to me.

What would it look like to optimize what benefits and let everything else move a bit slower?


All of us are going to have some things we want to make as efficient (and painless) as possible AND some things we don't. If you don't want to optimize one of these areas? DON'T. It's that simple.

Move your body a little every day. If science says it , it must be true? (article)

Want to leave by 5? Try out some of these tips to improve your work productivity to deliver in less time. (article)

Dare to rest! Start considering your rest time a core element in productivity. (podcast)

Get more done in less time from your home. Because we all feel a little scattered when working from home sometimes. (video)

Delegate or drown. Slowing down to make an intentional decision to delegate may seem counterintuitive, but in the long run you’ll benefit. (article)

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