Advertising
Advertising

3 Things to Give Up for Lent That Could Improve Your Productivity

3 Things to Give Up for Lent That Could Improve Your Productivity

    This week saw the beginning of Lent, which is described as follows:

    “Lent is the Christian observance of the liturgical year from Ash Wednesday to Easter Sunday.”

    Traditionally, during the time of Lent those who observe it either do something consistently or give up something that they know is detrimental to them – or is a habit they;d like to eliminate. Common things include smoking, drinking or eating junk food.

    Advertising

    But we;re in the 21st century now, and perhaps it’s time we look at a few of the things that in today’s day and age you could give up for Lent that would make an impact.

    1. Social Media

    This is a biggie.

    What if you quit tweeting during Lent? Imagine steering clear of Facebook for that long of a spell? Maybe you should stop checking in on Foursquare instead?

    These may seem like tall orders, but not too long ago these things didnt even exist. Think about how much you’d get done – and be able to do – if you only paid attention to social media when it was absolutely required, like at your place of work.

    Advertising

    One thing you could look at doing is only tweeting the writing you do on your website during Lent. After all, there are plugins or services that will do that for you.

    Giving up social media for Lent seems huge, but think of the value you’ll get by engaging people by other means for a substantial time period rather than via status updates and retweets. It’s worth exploring.

    2. Mobile Gadgets

    We all love our gadgets. Whether it starts with an “i” or not, they keep us connected to a world that’d be tougher to reach without them.

    Why not take this time of year to set them aside and keep things on your laptop or desktop computer and not take them with you everywhere you go? If that’s not possible, restrict yourself to only the necessary times and applications on the mobile devices you own.

    Advertising

    Not using these devices during Lent may seem difficult – if not impossible – but that’s all the more reason to make an effort to do so, isn’t it?

    3. Email

    Wouldn’t it be great to not have to deal with email during this time of year? Think about the freedom you’d have of not wondering when the next one was going to arrive.

    Again, quitting email for Lent may not be a luxury you can afford if your job relies on it as a means of communication. But what if you gave up personal email? Adjusted the times when you’ll check it?

    There are tools out there (AwayFind, for example) that can help you do this, and even Gmail has an autoresponder that may be usually reserved for vacation time. If you look at this as a “vacation from email”, then using the autoresponder built into Gmail is an easy thing to do.

    Advertising

    And you wouldn’t concern yourself with getting to Inbox Zero every day, either.

    Conclusion

    These are just three of the modern conveniences (or tetherings) we have that you could give up if you observe Lent. In fact, they may be tougher to stay away from than the old stand-by vices I mentioned off the top.

    If you’re observing Lent, what are you giving up (or focusing on doing) and why? Let us know in the comments below.

    (Photo credit: Conceptual Image of Faith via Shutterstock)

    More by this author

    4 Simple Steps to Brain Dump for a Smarter Brain Why Is Productivity Important? 10 Reasons to Become More Productive Get What Matters Done by Scheduling Time Blocks The Ultimate Way to get to Inbox Zero How to Use a Calendar to Create Time and Space

    Trending in Lifestyle

    1 How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life 2 9 Natural Remedies for Insomnia to Help You Achieve Quality Sleep 3 Why Do I Have Bad Luck? 2 Simple Things to Change Your Destiny 4 If You Think You’re in an Unhappy Marriage, Remember These 5 Things 5 How Guided Meditation for Sleep Improves Your Mindset While Awake

    Read Next

    Advertising
    Advertising

    Last Updated on December 2, 2018

    How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

    How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

    Ebb and flow. Contraction and expansion. Highs and lows. It’s all about the cycles of life.

    The entire course of our life follows this up and down pattern of more and then less. Our days flow this way, each following a pattern of more energy, then less energy, more creativity and periods of greater focus bookended by moments of low energy when we cringe at the thought of one more meeting, one more call, one more sentence.

    Advertising

    The key is in understanding how to use the cycles of ebb and flow to our advantage. The ability to harness these fluctuations, understand how they affect our productivity and mood and then apply that knowledge as a tool to improve our lives is a valuable strategy that few individuals or corporations have mastered.

    Here are a few simple steps to start using this strategy today:

    Advertising

    Review Your Past Flow

    Take just a few minutes to look back at how your days and weeks have been unfolding. What time of the day are you the most focused? Do you prefer to be more social at certain times of the day? Do you have difficulty concentrating after lunch or are you energized? Are there days when you can’t seem to sit still at your desk and others when you could work on the same project for hours?

    Do you see a pattern starting to emerge? Eventually you will discover a sort of map or schedule that charts your individual productivity levels during a given day or week.  That’s the first step. You’ll use this information to plan your days going forward.

    Advertising

    Schedule According to Your Flow Pattern

    Look at the types of things you do each day…each week. What can you move around so that it’s a better fit for you? Can you suggest to your team that you schedule meetings for late morning if you can’t stand to be social first thing? Can you schedule detailed project work or highly creative tasks, like writing or designing when you are best able to focus? How about making sales calls or client meetings on days when you are the most social and leaving billing or reports until another time when you are able to close your door and do repetitive tasks.

    Keep in mind that everyone is different and some things are out of our control. Do what you can. You might be surprised at just how flexible clients and managers can be when they understand that improving your productivity will result in better outcomes for them.

    Advertising

    Account for Big Picture Fluctuations

    Look at the bigger picture. Consider what happens during different months or times during the year. Think about what is going on in the other parts of your life. When is the best time for you to take on a new project, role or responsibility? Take into account other commitments that zap your energy. Do you have a sick parent, a spouse who travels all the time or young children who demand all of your available time and energy?

    We all know people who ignore all of this advice and yet seem to prosper and achieve wonderful success anyway, but they are usually the exception, not the rule. For most of us, this habitual tendency to force our bodies and our brains into patterns of working that undermine our productivity result in achieving less than desired results and adding more stress to our already overburdened lives.

    Why not follow the ebb and flow of your life instead of fighting against it?

      Featured photo credit: Nathan Dumlao via unsplash.com

      Read Next