There is a certain limit when performing an action, after which the action you take turns into unproductivity. This is happening mostly because of unrealistic deadlines and lack of planning — or goals that are not specific enough.
If you work harder and longer days, you may get more done. At the same time there is a price to pay for this and in the worst case, that price may halt you down completely. Especially if you are not willing to change your working routines.
The more you do, the more you stress out
When you are pushing harder and trying to do more, you are going to be stressed out about the situation. The more stressed you are, the more difficult it becomes to cool down and recharge your batteries after your working session ends. You keep pondering about work matters when you are not working. In many cases, you wake up during the night, thinking and stressing about the work you have to finish.
Stress (the negative one) affects your health and well-being in a terrible manner. If you value your health and put it as a priority in your life, it is time to slow down the working pace.
The quality of the action may be poor
If you want to do more work, can you be sure that the quality of the actions you take won’t suffer?
I have experienced this myself. When I did more stuff (and especially in a smaller block of time), I wasn’t able to concentrate enough on the task I was doing. This led to a situation where I had to go back and fix my work before my quality standards were met.
When you work too much, ask yourself this question:
“Am I giving enough focus to my current task so that it gets done correctly the first time?”
If you aren’t, then pay close attention to it, because otherwise you are increasing your already high workload. However, if you spend a little time on this question it will save your time in the long run.
You may take the wrong action, because you don’t focus
People often talk about taking massive action and why it is beneficial for reaching your goals. However, sometimes massive action can cause massive stress and frustration.
This happens, when you are taking action for action’s own sake. However, if you knew the right type of massive action to take you would get much better results as a return, thus saving you from frustration.
In order to take the right type of massive action, you should have a clear idea where you are heading. After that, you should link your planned action steps to your goal and be absolutely certain that the action you are taking is essential for reaching that goal. When you take the focused (and right) massive action instead you are guaranteed to see results faster.
You are running out of fuel
There are two things that keep us going, even if we have a lot of work ahead of us: passion towards the topic and motivation for consistent action.
The danger of working too much is that you are going to burn out these two crucial elements quickly. When this happens, you find work to be meaningless and you can’t find any reason to take action. Even if you know what your passion is but you don’t want to take action on it, you feel greatly frustrated and sad inside.
To prevent this situation occurring you have to work to the right rhythm: reasonable-length working sessions combined with moments dedicated for mental and physical regeneration (exercise, sleep, meditation, etc.).
This keeps the motivational flame alive — and you are still excited to pursue your passion.
Doing more isn’t always for the best. Take a look at the above criteria and evaluate what you’ve got on your plate. Are you doing too much? Be honest with yourself and make any changes that you need.
Then you can turn that unproductively back into productivity.
(Photo credit: Mowing job via Shutterstock)