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Why Is Productivity Important? 10 Reasons to Become More Productive

Why Is Productivity Important? 10 Reasons to Become More Productive

Why do you look for tips, tricks and ideas to hack your life? Why do you test new and exciting products and theories so that you can produce at more optimum levels? Why is productivity important?

When you really think about it – I mean, really break it down – there are 10 reasons why.

Some of them work in tandem, some don’t. Some rate higher on one person’s scale than on another’s. Some are practical, some are quite silly. But all of them are reasons – and here are 10 of them:

1. You’ll do more with less of your time.

This one is at the top of the list.

There aren’t enough hours in the day to allow us to meet all of the demands we have, so by being more productive with the time we have, we can do more stuff.

To-do lists keep us moving forward, checklists track our progress and reminders and calendars serve to keep us on schedule.

But is that enough of a reason to want to be more productive? Just to do more stuff?

Speeding up doing the stuff you’ve already got on the go just so that you can do more may seem like a good move, but it depends on what the “more” is. If the “more” is the important stuff, then you’re on the right track.

If it’s just stuff, then you’re way off course.

2. You’ll do better with your time.

Putting some form of productivity system in place – a trusted one that best suits your personality – will allow you to achieve better results of the stuff you do with that time.

You’ll be on the ball more often, be able to move fluidly from task to task and not get lost nearly as much with a trusted system at your side.

The fact that you want to do better with your time means you’re stuck as-is. You know you’ve got more in you, and you’ve decided that you’d much rather to better with what you have than add more to your plate just to appear better to others.

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You can’t fool yourself or others with this strategy. This is clearly a case where less is best.

3. You’ll earn more with your time.

By being more productive (or being seen as more productive) you’ll increase your earning potential. This can be true…if you’re willing to work on this over the long term.

It also will work if you manage what you have rather than add more to what you’ve got to do. If you fail to do the latter, then you’ll be in a perpetual state of overhwhelm. And no amount of extra earnings is worth that.

Outsourcing your owrk can be one way to earn more with your time, but you need to take the time to choose wisely about what you’re going to offload. Make the wrong call, and you’ve got twice the mess to clean up.

Treat your time as a commodity and you’ll have a better chance of taking advantage of it when the chips are down.

4. You’ll have an easier time.

Some people just want to be able to relax. They want to know that everything is able to run on autopilot so that they can enjoy the fruits of their labour.

Being more productive can make life easier for you, especially if you commit to the system that will work best in keeping you on top of things.

Adopting the system won’t be easy, though. You’ll face challenges that are both external (Why do you need to capture that?) and internal (I’ll remember that…I don’t need to write it down).

If you can overcome hurdles like those then you may very well have an easier time with things going forward.

5. You’ll have time to do something different.

You hate what you’re doing, it’s not your calling. Or you want to take on a hobby that you’ve been eyeing up for awhile, but time just won’t permit it – at least not the way you’re using time now.

That’s when being more productive with your time can make the “same old, same old” turn into opportunities for new and different things.

Whether you’re pursuing a passion that you know you could make a living at or want to take up knitting, you can get there by planning your time better.

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That may mean giving up stuff that isn’t moving you closer to that new and different thing (cutting back or eliminating television, starting your day a little earlier, etc.), but it’s a big first step.

That’s how you’ll go from being more productive in general to being more productive with purpose.

And your purpose is really the best one of all. Work towards that purpose with productive use of time in mind.

6. You’ll have more time in a day.

This one is more a matter of how you handle time than actually gaining time.

We all have the same amount of time; how each of us uses it can be the difference-maker.

You may be the type of person who needs a rigorous schedule. So you do that.

You may be the type of person who can only take on one big project at a time so that you can get it done and have more time for play later. So you do that.

You may need to scale back on your current plans so that the bigger plans you have your life can stand a chance. So you do that.

The more time you’re looking for is time you already have; it’s just used in a way that doesn’t work for you. Make it work for you…because we don’t have a lot of it.

7. Time will be on your side.

Time seems to run away from you. You can’t keep up. The clock works against you and there’s nothing you’ve been able to do about that.

By being more productive with it, then it will start to play nice with you.

It won’t. Not unless you give it the respect it deserves.

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Time hates to be abused. You abuse time by wasting it or squeezing the life out of it by using every second of it in the act of doing.

Time needs a break, and so do you. So you can’t just be more productive without really looking closely at how you treat time.

Proper planning and knowing when to just let go will go a long way in making time a fast friend.

But it’s a fickle beast – and that makes it a tough friendship to maintain.

8. You’ll be able to control time better.

This is one of the silly ones, and yet people put systems and checkpoints in place so that they can try to do it. Things happen. Plans go awry. Balls get dropped. Why?

Because we’re human…and we live in a world full of humans.

Increased productivity doesn’t happen because of how you handle the moments you are in control; it happens because of how you handle the moments that you’re not.

9. You’ll free up more time.

This one works in conjunction with making things easier on yourself, but with a slight difference. Those who free up time tend to be more fulfilled than those who just want to have an easier time.

That’s because the freeing up of time presents a variety of things to do, places to go, people to see and more.

The people who want to free up time have things they want to pursue with that time. The people who want an easier time simply don’t want to do much with it other than know they’ve made their lives a little bit easier.

So, do you want to live a more fulfilled life because of increased productivity or just have “less filled” life because of increadsed productivity?

The answer separates those who want more freedom and those who want it easier.

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10. You’ll improve over time.

It seems to many of the other reasons but has a distinction about it:

It focuses more on the journey than on the destination.

How you improve over time is subjective when you aim to be more productive. It could be in work, life or elsewhere. It could be in many areas, with the focus on improvement being shifted when either the priorities shift or the mood strikes.

By looking as far ahead as possible, you put yourself in the position for major renovations in your life.

As you gain knowledge and wisdom, your productivity will improve. You may not be more efficient at things, but you’ll be more effective.

When you have this reasoning in mind, time is your friend because you’re not in a race against it. You’re working with it, alongside it for years and years.

You learn how to treat it and it learns how to treat you. There is an ebb and flow, a give and take. And the struggles and skirmishes are minor and forgotten. You don’t hold a grudge against time and it doesn’t hold one against you.

The journey is essential to the improvement, and you’ve brought along all of the right equipment (upgrading as you see fit along the way) to make sure it’s an amazing one.

Productivity is important not only to your work, but your life overall. 

Time is limited, only when you know how to manage time better will you be able to achieve more, especially to achieve the things you desire most.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

More by this author

Mike Vardy

A productivity specialist who shows you how to define your day, funnel your focus, and make every moment matter.

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Last Updated on August 6, 2019

Why Do I Procrastinate? 5 Root Causes And How To Tackle Them

Why Do I Procrastinate? 5 Root Causes And How To Tackle Them

Procrastination is something many people can relate to and I, myself, have been there and done that. Yes, I write all about productivity now, but when I first started out on my career path, I would often put off work I didn’t want to do. And most of the time I didn’t even realize I was doing it.

So what changed?

I thought to myself, “why do I procrastinate?” And I started to read a lot of books on productivity, learning a great deal and shifting my mind to the reasons why people procrastinate.

My understanding brought me a new perspective on how to put an end to the action of procrastination.

Procrastination slows your goals and dreams way down. It can create stress and feelings of frustration. It rears its ugly head on a regular basis for a lot of people. This is particularly apparent at work with day-to-day projects and tasks.

But, why do people self-sabotage in this way? Essentially, there are 5 reasons behind procrastination. See if you can identify with any of these in your own work life.

1. The Perfectionist’s Fear

Procrastination is sometimes a subconscious fear of failure.

If you put off a task enough, then you can’t face up to the potential (and usually imagined) negative results. If you’re a stickler for minor details, the stress of getting things ‘just right’ may be too much and cause you to delay continuing the task.

Either way, fear is at the root cause and can sabotage your desire to move forward.

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How to Tackle It?

Try visualizing the completion of your task in a positive way.

For example, you have a presentation that your boss wants you to conduct for a potential client. Visualize yourself standing in the meeting room confident, meeting the eyes of the client and seeing them light up as you explain the concept simply and concisely.

Imagine your boss telling you how great you did and you were the best person for the job. Think about how it would feel to you and focus on this as you move forward with the task.

2. A Dreamer’s Lack of Action

This is a person who is highly creative and has many brilliant ideas but can’t quite seem to bring them to fruition.

The main reason for this is because there’s usually no structure or goal setting involved once the idea has been created. This aimless approach ends up manifesting as a lack of decision-making and significant delays on a project.

How to Tackle It?

Write down a timeline of what you want to achieve and by when. Ideally, do this daily to keep yourself on track and accountable for progression. Creative minds tend to jump from one idea to the next, so cultivating focus is essential.

If you’re designing and creating a new product at work, set out a task list for the week ahead with the steps you want to focus on each day. Doing this ahead of time will stop your mind from wandering across to different ideas.

Learn about how to plan your time and take actions from some of the successful people: 8 Ways Highly Successful People Plan Their Time

3. An Overwhelmed Avoider

This is one of the most common reasons for procrastination; the sheer overwhelm of a daunting task.

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The complexity of a task can cause the brain to lose motivation and avoid doing it altogether choosing instead to stay in its comfort zone.

The search then starts for a more enjoyable task and the harder tasks are put off. This can cause stress and dread when the task inevitably comes up to be completed.

How to Tackle It?

Break the challenge down into smaller tasks and tackle each one individually.

For example, if you have a project that has technical elements to it that you know you’ll find challenging, list each step you need to take in order to complete these difficult elements. Think of ways you can resolve potential hurdles. Perhaps you have a coworker that may have time to help or even consider that the solution may be easier than you initially think. Put each task in order of most daunting to least daunting. Ideally, try to deal with the more challenging parts of each task in the morning so that momentum is created as the tasks get easier through the day.

A reward system will also help you stay motivated so, once completed, you can enjoy your treat of choice.

If you want to know how to better handle your feelings and stay motivated, take a look at my other article: Procrastination Is a Matter of Emotion, Here’s How to Stop It

4. The Busy Bee Who Lacks Prioritization

Either you have too many tasks or don’t truly acknowledge the differing importance of each task. The result? Getting nothing done.

Time is spent switching constantly from one task to another or spending too much time deciding what to do.

How to Tackle It?

It’s all about priorities and choosing important tasks over urgent ones.

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Make sure to question the value and purpose of each task and make a list in order of importance.

For example, throughout your work day, you can waste a lot of time dealing with ‘urgent’ emails from colleagues but, you need to ask yourself if these are more important than working on a task that will affect, say, several office projects at once.

Help yourself to prioritize and set a goal of working through your list over the next few hours reassessing the situation once the time is up.

In my other article, I talk about an effective way to prioritze and achieve more in less time: How to Prioritize Right in 10 Minutes and Work 10X Faster

5. The One with Shiny Object Syndrome (Distraction-Prone)

This is another common cause for procrastination; just simple distraction.

Our brains aren’t wired to focus for long periods of time and it looks for something else. So throw in a bunch of colleagues equally looking for distractions or checking your phone mindlessly, and you’ve got a recipe for ultimate procrastination.

However, this type of procrastination may not always be an unconscious decision to sabotage and put off work. It’s simply a result of your work setup or types of coworkers you have. Only you know the answer to that.

How to Tackle It?

Be mindful of your workspace and potential distractions. Schedule a specific time to converse with your coworkers, put headphones on to minimize listening to what’s going on around you, and switch your phone off.

Aim to do this for 20-30 minutes at a time and then take a break. This will be a much more efficient way of working and getting what you need done. This is also why scheduling down time is so important for productivity.

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Whether this type of procrastination is self-sabotage or being a victim of a distracting environment, either way you can take control.

If you need a little more guidance on how to stay focus, this guide can help you: How to Focus and Maximize Your Productivity (the Definitive Guide)

Bottom Line

I’m going to be bold and assume you identified with at least one of these procrastination pitfalls.

You could be trapped in the endless cycle of procrastination like I was, that is, until I decided to find out my why behind putting off tasks and projects. It was only then that I could implement strategies and move forward in a positive and productive way.

I killed the procrastination monster and so can you. I now complete my tasks more efficiently and completely killed that feeling of stress and falling behind with work that procrastination brings.

I know it’s not easy to stop procrastinating right away, so I also have this complete guide to help you stop it once and for all: Procrastination – A Step-By-Step Guide to Stop Procrastinating

Featured photo credit: Luke Chesser via unsplash.com

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