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You Can Easily Learn 100 TED Talks Lessons In 5 Minutes Which Most People Need 70 Hours For

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You Can Easily Learn 100 TED Talks Lessons In 5 Minutes Which Most People Need 70 Hours For

The other week I watched 70 hours of TED talks; short, 18-minute talks given by inspirational leaders in the fields of Technology,Entertainment, and Design (TED). I watched 296 talks in total, and I recently went through the list of what I watched, weeded out the crappy and boring talks, and created a list of the 100 best things I learned !

This article isn’t entirely about productivity, but I guarantee you’ll learn a thing or two. Here are 100 incredible things I learned watching 70 hours of TED talks last week!

productivity

    Productivity

    1. Studies have shown that what motivates a person the most (in non-factory-type work) is how much autonomy, mastery, and purpose they have, not how much money they make.

    2. Playing video games can actually make you more productive because video games give you more physical, mental, emotional, and social resilience.

    3. A lot of people aspire to be productive so they can become happier, but happiness has been shown to lead to productivity, not the other way around.

    4. You don’t have as much attention to give to the world around you as you think. You can’t recall memories while processing new data, you can only process so much information at once, and your attention is easily manipulated (like by magicians).

    5. Innovative thinking is often a slow and gradual process, not a moment of instant, lightbulb-like inspiration.

    6. If you want people to remember you, sweat the small stuff. Most companies (and people) do the big stuff right, so sweating the small stuff (like getting the user interfaces on your products right) can really set you apart.

    7. You have three brain systems for love: lust, romantic love, and attachment. To develop more intimate relationships with your significant other, it’s important to invest in all three.

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      8. When you create an environment for your employees that makes them truly happy(instead of just rich), more profits may follow.

      9. Your office is actually a pretty crappy environment to get work done. In fact, when Jason Fried asked folks where their favorite place to get work done was, almost no one said “in the office”.

      10. Taking time off can make you a lot more productive, because time away from your work lets you explore, reflect, and come up with better ideas.

      11. The greatest leaders and companies constantly reflect on why they do what they do, instead of simply doing it.

      12. Success isn’t a destination, it’s a continuous journey that’s made up of eight parts: passion, hard work, focus, pushing yourself and others, having great ideas, making constant improvements, serving others, and persistence.

      13. The key to becoming more productive and successful may be to fail faster and smarter, especially if you do creative work.

      14. We don’t feel fear because of a potential loss of income or status, we feel fear because we’re afraid of being judged and ridiculed. Any vision of success has to admit what the definition doesn’t include, and what you may be missing out on.

      15. IQ isn’t the only thing that dictates whether someone will be successful or unsuccessful; grit does too.

      16. If you want to make better long-term decisions, imagine how your decisions will affect your future-self.

      17. All you have to do to learn practically anything is jump in and ask yourself, “what’s the worst that could happen?”

      18. People tend to avoid conflict (it’s in our nature), even though a moderate level of conflict may be the key to better relationships, research, and businesses.

      19. Mass media is pretty much dead, so the key to making big changes is through tribes. As time goes on, more and more people are investing their time and attention in their tribes (like TED!)

      20. The best way to help someone is often to shut up and listen to them.

      21. A great way to kill two birds with one stone: have walking meetings, where you walk and talk to someone at the same time. It’s great exercise, and it speeds up the meeting.

      22. Stress by itself doesn’t affect your healthHow you think about stress does.

      Here are three other productivity experiments I’ve done recently: Meditating for 35 hours over 7 daysusing my smartphone for only an hour a day for three monthsliving in total reclusion for 10 days.

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        Becoming a better human

        23, 24, 25. Limits are bullshit. Some people choose to not be set back by limits, and at the end of the day, they’re the ones who end up giving TED talks. Like Neil Harbisson, who was born without the ability to see color, so he hacked together a device to hear color. Or Caroline Casey, who didn’t learn until she was 17 that she was legally blind. Or David Blaine, who pushed his body and mind to hold his breath for 17 straight minutes underwater.

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          26. Don’t worry – texting isn’t ruining your understanding of the English language.

          27. You’re not as rational as you think you are. One example: do you supersize your meal at McDonald’s even when you’re not hungry?

          28. Three keys to success from Elon Musk: Work very hard, pay attention to negative feedback (especially when it comes from friends), and study physics to learn how to reason from first principles (instead of by analogy).

          29. If you’re arguing with someone to win the argument, you’re doing it for the wrong reasons.You should be arguing to learn.

          30. Like it or not, your body language affects how other people think of you.

          31. Great, committed sex combines two thingsyour need for security, and your need for surprise.

          32. Being introverted isn’t a bad thing; it’s quite the opposite! Even though society often seems to value extraverts more, introverts should be celebrated just as much.

          33. To save more money, commit to saving more money, tomorrow.

          34. Living an awesome life means having a great attitude (seeing the good in things), seeing the wonder in the world around you, and being authentic.

          35, 36, 37, 38, 39. 40, 41. There isn’t one secret to happiness, but there are a lot of small secrets that will move you in the right direction. Stay in the moment, and be mindfulSpend money on other people, rather than on yourselfSlow down. Take time to appreciate and see the good in what you haveLive a life that’s full of meaning in the short-and long-term. And change how you look at the past, present, and future.

          42. Your memory is a lot faultier than you think. You frequently remember things that didn’t happen, and remember things differently than they actually happened. Plus, your memories can be manipulated.

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          43. When it comes to classical music, no one is tone-deaf, and almost anyone can be calmed or inspired by classical music.

          44. The people who design book covers actually put a ton of thought (and art) into their designs.

          45. The biggest killer in America isn’t cancer, it’s obesity. 66% of the U.S. is obese, including a lot of children and teens, and 1 in 4 people in America dies of a preventable, food-related disease.

          46. Schools kill creativity, and the education model we teach kids by is significantly outdated. School should nurture, not undermine creativity, which Ken Robinson argues that it does.

          47. Students learn best when you make them stop and think, and bring classroom problems down to earth.

          48. There is a large difference between unconditional love and unconditional acceptance, and just because you are loved doesn’t mean you are accepted.

          49. People are powerful. They stand up to soldiers, show compassion when it seems impossible, and expose their vulnerability when it’s the most difficult.

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            50. Monkeys make the same stupid mistakes with money that people do, so our irrationality may just be rooted in our evolutionary history.

            51. Depression (and other diseases) can strike anyone, anytime. Including a comic who has basically everything going for him.

            52. North Korea is one of the most terrible and gruesome places to grow up. Citizens of the country frequently starve to death, are victim to military violence, and are shot if they try to escape.

            53. Violence against women isn’t a “women’s issue”, it’s a man’s issue that’s rooted in the way men view women.

            54. One of the most effective ways to cure poverty in developing countries isn’t food, cattle, or anything else – it’s giving away cellphones.

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              55. Every day, homeless people are completely ignored, abused, and made to feel invisible.Take it from someone who used to be homeless.

              56. According to data, women “systematically underestimate their own abilities”, particularly at work. According to Cheryl Sandberg, women need to sit at the table, make their partner a real partner, and not “leave before they leave” (step back from opportunities because of their family life).

              57. Some of the best designs not only look great, but also accommodate your other four senses. They should also feel great, sound great, smell great, and even taste great.

              58. We live in the one of the most peaceful times of humanity’s existence, even though it might not seem that way. This talk has the fascinating stats to back that up.

              59, 60. Good design has the potential to make people incredibly happy. And some of the best designs are the ones that tell stories.

              61. A little danger is good for both kids and grown-ups, and it makes you into a more versatile, well-rounded person.

              62. If you want to help people in developing countries, you better have a deep understanding of the values of who you’re helping. Take it from a condom saleswoman in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

              63. There may be another way to run a successful, modern economythe Chinese way. Even if you disagree, this talk is fascinating (it’s given from a Chinese perspective).

              64. The language you speak affects your ability to save money. Studies have shown that languages that are more future-oriented motivate people to save more money.

              65. Hard work is sometimes degraded in society, but unjustifiably so. According to Mike Rowe (the host of Dirty Jobs), hard work is worth it.

              66. The way we think about charity is dead-wrong. We reward charities for how little money they spend, instead of for the difference they actually make.

              67. “Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change”, and it’s one of the most powerful qualities you have.

              68. 4 a.m. is the most mysterious hour of the day.

              69. 30 is not the new 20. Some people see their 20′s as a throwaway decade, even though it’s one of the most formative decades of a person’s life.

              70, 71. Additional choice can make people either happier or less happy. Choice can make someone happy when the choices legitimately suit their needs better, and it can make someone less happy when it makes them more paralyzed (which happens a lot more than you think).

              A Year of Productivity is my full-time job for a whole year, and I have no ads on the site. If you find what I make valuable, please pitch in a few bucks! You don’t have to any means, and I hate asking for money, but it truly helps me build my site up and pay the bills. Here are 8 awesome reasons to pitch in!

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                Technology

                72. It turns out you can use two slices of pizza as a slide clicker, make music with ketchup, and make a piano keyboard with a banana!

                73. If your medical data could anonymously be used by any researcher seeking a hypothesis, there would be a “wave of healthcare innovation”.

                74. Since more and more websites are trying to tailor their content to you, you may get caught up in a digital “filter bubble” and not get “exposed to information that could challenge or broaden [your] worldview”.

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                  75. There is a camera that shoots video at a trillion frames a second, and the results are incredible.

                  76. Google is working on a car that drives itself, and it actually works very well.

                  77. A trend to watch: 3D printing. The ability for you to be able to print 3D items at home isn’t that far away.

                  78. Incredible things happen when you create an open encyclopedia that anyone can edit. Here’s the story behind Wikipedia.

                  79. There are a lot of videos about cats and twerking, but web video is also an incredible tool for learning and global innovation.

                  80. Everywhere you go online, you’re tracked; a lot more than you might suspect. Web tracking isn’t 100% evil, but websites certainly track you a ton, so it’s worth informing yourself what they use that information for.

                  81. Every electronic device you own is incredibly complex, with parts sourced from all around the world, so rebuilding anything you own from scratch is nearly impossible, as one guy found out.

                  82. You might put in orders on Amazon without much thought, but after you place an order, an incredibly intricate, hidden world of box-packing churns away to deliver your order.

                  83. Computers keep getting smarter; so fast that they often seem to be approaching (and exceeding) how smart humans are. But although they may be getting faster, they’re not as clever or creative as humans are.

                  84. Electrical sockets used to be shaped like lightbulb holders, because that used to be the only thing we plugged in.

                  85, 86. You can make plastic out of mushrooms, and the process is very good for the environment. This is great, because plastic has huge, surprising consequences for the environment.

                  87. It’s possible to stream wireless data from a light bulb (though it requires a line-of-sight between your device and the light).

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                    Earth (and beyond)

                    88. Fish are delicious, but the way we’re farming them is unsustainable, not to mention bad for Nemo. Luckily, there’s a revolutionary (and fascinating) fish farming system in Spain that solves this.

                    89. Some fish and other ocean critters are positively enchanting. Want to see what I mean? Here is 5.5 minutes of footage of fascinating underwater creatures, including fish that change colors, creatures that camouflage to fit their environment, and fish that light up in the black of the ocean.

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                      90. 80-90% of undersea creatures light up.

                      91. In my opinion (after watching this TED talk), one of the most interesting underwater creatures is the octopus.

                      92. Bees have been around for 50 million years, but they recently started dying en masse because of “parasitic mites, viral and bacterial diseases, and exposure to pesticides and herbicides”.

                      93. Flowers play beautiful tricks to attract insects to spread their pollen.

                      94. How a fly flies is fascinating, and according to Michael Dickinson, “perhaps one of the greatest feats of evolution“.

                      95. An asteroid 6 miles wide could end civilization on Earth in an instant.

                      96. The scientific odds are not against, but incredibly in favor of alien life.

                      97. One of Saturn’s moons has a giant volcano that shoots out ice instead of lava. And that’s just one cool part about the planet.

                      98. You can run a program on your computer that helps the University of California, Berkeley analyze radio telescope data for aliens.

                      99. Curiosity-driven science pays for itself, and drives incredible innovation for years to come.

                      100. Embrace the mystery that exists in the world. J.J. Ahrams has a mystery box that he hasn’t opened in 35 years, because the potentialof what’s inside the box is unlimited. which is worth way more than what’s actually in the box.

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                      Last Updated on October 7, 2021

                      Are You Addicted to Productivity?

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                      Are You Addicted to Productivity?

                      “It’s great to be productive. It really is. But sometimes, we chase productivity so much that it makes us, well, unproductive. It’s easy to read a lot about how to be more productive, but don’t forget that you have to make that time up.”

                      Matt Cutts wrote that back in 2013,[1]

                      “Today, search for ‘productivity’ and Google will come back with about 663,000,000 results. If you decide to go down this rabbit hole, you’ll be bombarded by a seemingly endless amount of content. I’m talking about books, blogs, videos, apps, podcasts, scientific studies, and subreddits all dedicated to productivity.”

                      Like so many other people, I’ve also fallen into this trap. For years I’ve been on the lookout for trends and hacks that will help me work faster and more efficiently — and also trends that help me help others to be faster. I’ve experimented with various strategies and tools . And, while some of these strategies and solutions have been extremely useful — without parsing out what you need quickly — it’s counterproductive.

                      Sometimes you end up spending more time focusing on how to be productive instead of actually being productive.

                      “The most productive people I know don’t read these books, they don’t watch these videos, they don’t try a new app every month,” James Bedell wrote in a Medium post.[2] “They are far too busy getting things done to read about Getting Things Done.”

                      This is my mantra:

                      I proudly say, “I am addicted to productivity — I want to be addicted to productivity — productivity is my life and my mission — and I also want to find the best way to lead others through productivity to their best selves.

                      But most of the time productivity means putting your head down and working until the job’s done.” –John Rampton

                      Addiction to Productivity is Real

                      Dr. Sandra Chapman, director of the University of Texas at Dallas Center for BrainHealth points out that the brain can get addicted to productivity just as it can to more common sources of addiction, such as drugs, gambling, eating, and shopping.

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                      “A person might crave the recognition their work gives them or the salary increases they get,” Chapman told the BBC.[3] “The problem is that just like all addictions, over time, a person needs more and more to be satisfied, and then it starts to work against you. Withdrawal symptoms include increased anxiety, depression, and fear.”

                      Despite the harmful consequences, addiction is considered by some experts as a brain disease that affects the brain’s reward system and ends in compulsive behavior. Regardless, society tends to reward productivity — or at least to treat it positively. As a result, this makes the problem even worse.

                      “It’s seen like a good thing: the more you work, the better,” adds Chapman. “Many people don’t realize the harm it causes until a divorce occurs and a family is broken apart, or the toll it takes on mental health.”

                      Because of the occasional negative issues with productivity, it’s no surprise that it is considered a “mixed-blessing addiction.”

                      “A workaholic might be earning a lot of money, just as an exercise addict is very fit,” explains Dr. Mark Griffiths, distinguished professor of behavioral addiction at Nottingham Trent University. “But the thing about any addiction is that in the long run, the detrimental effects outweigh any short-term benefits.”

                      “There may be an initial period where the individual who is developing a work addiction is more productive than someone who isn’t addicted to work, but it will get to a point when they are no longer productive, and their health and relationships are affected,” Griffiths writes in Psychology Today.[4] “It could be after one year or more, but if the individual doesn’t do anything about it, they could end up having serious health consequences.”

                      “For instance, I speculated that the consequences of work addiction may be reclassified as something else: If someone ends up dying of a work-related heart attack, it isn’t necessarily seen as having anything to do with an addiction per se – it might be attributed to something like burnout,” he adds.

                      There Are Three “Distinct Extreme Productivity Types

                      Cyril Peupion, a Sydney-based productivity expert, has observed extreme productivity among clients at both large and medium-sized companies. “Most people who come to me are high performers and very successful. But often, the word they use to describe their work style is ‘unsustainable,’ and they need help getting it back on track.”

                      By changing their work habits, Peupion assists teams and individuals improve their performance and ensure that their efforts are aligned with the overarching strategy of the business, rather than focusing on work as a means to an end. He has distinguished three types of extreme productivity in his classification: efficiency obsessive, selfishly productive, and quantity-obsessed.

                      Efficiency obsessive. “Their desks are super tidy and their pens are probably color-coded. They are the master of ‘inbox zero.’ But they have lost sight of the big picture, and don’t know the difference between efficiency and effectiveness.”

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                      Selfishly productive. “They are so focused on their own world that if they are asked to do something outside of it, they aren’t interested. They do have the big picture in mind, but the picture is too much about them.”

                      Quantity-obsessed. “They think; ‘The more emails I respond to, the more meetings I attend, the more tasks I do, the higher my performance.’ As a result, they face a real risk of burnout.”

                      Peupion believes that “quantity obsessed” individuals are the most common type “because there is a pervasive belief that ‘more’ means ‘better’ at work.”

                      The Warning Signs of Productivity Addiction

                      Here are a few questions you should ask yourself if you think you may be succumbing to productivity addiction. After all, most of us aren’t aware of this until it’s too late.

                      • Can you tell when you’re “wasting” time? If so, have you ever felt guilty about it?
                      • Does technology play a big part in optimizing your time management?
                      • Do you talk about how busy you are most of the time? In your opinion, is hustling better than doing less?
                      • What is your relationship with your email inbox? Are you constantly checking it or experience phantom notifications?
                      • When you only check one item off your list, do you feel guilty?
                      • Does stress from work interfere with your sleep?
                      • Have you been putting things off, like a vacation or side project, because you’re “too swamped?

                      The first step toward turning around your productivity obsession is to recognize it. If you answered “yes” to any of the above questions, then it’s time to make a plan to overcome your addiction to productivity.

                      Overcoming Your Productivity Addiction

                      Thankfully, there are ways to curb your productivity addiction. And, here are 9 such ways to achieve that goal.

                      1. Set Limits

                      Just because you’re hooked on productivity doesn’t mean you have to completely abstain from it. Instead, you need to establish boundaries.

                      For example, there are a lot of amazing productivity podcasts out there. But, that doesn’t mean you have to listen to them all in the course of a day. Instead, you could listen to one or two podcasts, like The Productivity Podcast or Before Breakfast, during your commute. And, that would be your only time of the day to get your productivity fix.

                      2. Create a Not-to-Do List

                      Essentially, the idea of a not-to-do list is to eliminate the need to practice self-discipline. Getting rid of low-value tasks and bad habits will allow you to focus on what you really want to do as opposed to weighing the pros and cons or declining time requests. More importantly, this prevents you from feeling guilty about not crossing everything off an unrealistic to-do list.

                      3. Be Vulnerable

                      By this, I mean admitting where you could improve. For example, if you’re new to remote work and are struggling with thi s, you would only focus on topics in this area. Suggestions would be how to create a workspace at home, not getting distracted when the kids aren’t in school, or improving remote communication and collaboration with others.

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                      4. Understand Why You Procrastinate

                      Often, we procrastinate to minimize negative emotions like boredom or stress. Other times it could be because it’s a learned trait, underestimating how long it takes you to complete something or having a bias towards a task.

                      Regardless of the exact reason, we end up doing busy work, scrolling social media, or just watching one more episode of our favorite TV series. And, even though we know that it’s not for the best, we do things that make us feel better than the work we should do to restore our mood.[5]

                      There are a lot of ways to overcome procrastination. But, the first step is to be aware of it so that you can take action. For example, if you’re dreading a difficult task, don’t just watch Netflix. Instead, procrastinate more efficiently,y like returning a phone call or working on a client pitch.

                      5. Don’t Be a Copycat

                      Let’s keep this short and sweet. When you find a productivity app or technique that works for you, stick with it.

                      That’s not to say that you can’t make adjustments along the way or try new tools or hacks. However, the main takeaway should be that just because someone swears by the Pomodoro Technique doesn’t mean it’s a good fit for you.

                      6. Say Yes to Less

                      Across the board, your philosophy should be less is more.

                      That means only download the apps you actually use and want to keep (after you try them out) and uninstall the ones you don’t use. For example, are you currently reading a book on productivity? Don’t buy your next book until you’ve finished the one you’re currently reading (or permit yourself to toss a book that isn’t doing you any good). — and if you really want to finish a book more quickly, listen to the book on your way to work and back.

                      Already have plans this weekend? Don’t commit to a birthday party. And, if you’re day is booked, decline that last-minute meeting request.

                      7. Stop Focusing on What’s Next

                      “In the age when purchasing a thing from overseas is just one click and talking to another person is one swipe right, acquiring new objects or experiences can be addictive like anything else,” writes Patrick Banks for Lifehack .

                      “That doesn’t need to be you,” he adds. “You can stop your addition to ‘the next thing’ starting today.” After all, “there will always be this next thing if you don’t make a conscious decision to get your life back together and be the one in charge.”

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                      • Think about your current lifestyle and the person you’re at this stage to help you identify what you aren’t satisfied with.
                      • By setting clear goals for yourself in the future, you will be able to overcome your addiction.
                      • Establish realistic goals.
                      • To combat addiction, you must be aware of what is going on around you, as well as inside your head, at any given time.
                      • Don’t spend time with people who have unhealthy behaviors.
                      • Hold yourself accountable.
                      • Keep a journal and write out what you want to overcome.
                      • Appreciate no longer being addicted to what’s next.

                      8. Simplify

                      Each day, pick one priority task. That’s it. As long as you concentrate on one task at a time, you will be less likely to get distracted or overwhelmed by an endless list of tasks. A simple mantra to live by is: work smarter, not harder.

                      The same is also accurate with productivity hacks and tools. Bullet journaling is a great example. Unfortunately, for many, a bullet journal is way more time-consuming and overwhelming than a traditional planner.

                      9. Learn How to Relax

                      “Sure, we need to produce sometimes, especially if we have to pay the bills, but, banning obsession with productivity is unhealthy,” writes Leo Babauta. “When you can’t get yourself to be productive, relax.” Don’t worry about being hyper-efficient. And, don’t beat yourself up about having fun.

                      “But what if you can’t motivate yourself … ever?” he asks. “Sure, that can be a problem. But if you relax and enjoy yourself, you’ll be happier.”

                      “And if you work when you get excited, on things you’re excited about, and create amazing things, that’s motivation,” Leo states. “Not forcing yourself to work when you don’t want to, on things you don’t want to work on — motivation is doing things you love when you get excited.”

                      But, how exactly can you relax? Here are some tips from Leo;

                      • Spend 5 minutes walking outside and breathe in the fresh air.
                      • Give yourself more time to accomplish things. Less rushing means less stress.
                      • If you can, get outside after work to enjoy nature.
                      • Play like a child. Even better? Play with your kids. And, have fun at work — maybe give gamification a try .
                      • Take the day off, rest, and do something non-work-related.
                      • Allow yourself an hour of time off. Try not to be productive during that time. Just relax.
                      • You should work with someone who is exciting. Make your project exciting.
                      • Don’t work in the evenings. Seriously.
                      • Visit a massage therapist.
                      • Just breathe.

                      “Step by step, learn to relax,” he suggests. “Learn that productivity isn’t everything.” For that statement, sorry Leo, I say productivity isn’t everything — it’s the only thing.” However, if you can’t cut loose, relax, do fun things, and do the living part of your life — you’ll crack in a big way — you really will.

                      It’s great to create and push forward — just remember it doesn’t mean that every minute must be spent working or obsessing over productivity issues. Instead, invest your time in meaningful, high-impact work, get into it, focus, put in big time and then relax.

                      Are You Addicted to Productivity? was originally published on Calendar by John Rampton.

                      Featured photo credit: Christina @ wocintechchat.com via unsplash.com

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