“Boys should be kept constantly occupied. After they are through with their school or shop duties we should entice them to join the choir, the band, or the Knights of the Altar. This will keep them busy. If we do not give them something to think about their minds will turn to unwholesome thoughts.”
– St. John Bosco
Yes, I am a proud Bosconian. I grew up in an exclusive school for boys and part of the things that were taught to us back then was to always keep ourselves “busy” to avoid thinking of unhealthy thoughts. Until just recently, I realized that “being busy” is not enough.
If you would check the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the word “busy” means “actively doing something.”
Upon further thinking about this definition, I realized that there is something missing from the thought. This led me to think if there is a word which might be better than just being “busy”.
If you are an entrepreneur, I’m sure you’ve encountered the term “productivity” for a couple of times already. Have you ever thought what the word “productive” really means?
According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the word “productive” means “doing or achieving a lot; working hard and getting good results.”
As I ponder on this definition, I somehow realized that being productive would be better compared to being busy.
While it is correct that if you are busy doing something, you tend to avoid thinking of unwholesome thoughts, I think that being productive is much better. Simply because being productive hits two birds with one stone.
As the definition says: “working hard and getting good results”, being productive not only saves a person from thinking about negative thoughts, he at the same time, learns new things that could help him achieve self-actualization. A person who is productive is able to accomplish things that would not only benefit him, but other individuals as well.
Have you ever thought which among your daily routine makes you productive? Here are some tips to have a productive work day.
Before going to bed
1. Make sure that you have listed the things that you need to do for the following day.
Having a list of activities to do helps you to manage your time effectively.
2. Make sure that all electronic devices are turned off before going to sleep.
While it is true that some people cannot sleep without the television turned on, watching before sleeping may actually trigger an event or an emotion that can cause wakefulness, thus, distracting your sleep pattern (e.g. fear from watching a horror movie before going to bed).
3. Keep in mind the best and most appropriate time to wake up; the earlier, the better.
It is true that having a good night sleep is essential; however, oversleeping and waking up late can greatly affect your productivity. Aristotle once said: “It is well to be up before daybreak, for such habits contribute to health, wealth, and wisdom.” Indeed, a person who starts doing things an hour earlier finishes an hour earlier than the rest.
After waking up
4. Keep your alarm clock far from your reach.
Having an alarm clock close your reach gives you the tendency to press snooze and oversleep. Before you know it, you are already running late with your scheduled appointment.
5. Establish a simple routine at the start the day and avoid thinking too much upon waking up.
Start your day with a simple routine that requires less thinking. This helps avoid stress and helps establish a positive outlook throughout the day.
6. Make sure you do your morning exercise daily.
While it is true that going to the gym is one of the best place for workout, having a simple exercise routine early morning helps a person to be alert and focused throughout day.
7. Do something related to your passion. Start doing simple projects that you love.
A famous saying goes “Choose a job that you love and you’ll never work for a single day in your life”. Have you ever thought that time really flies so fast when you do something that you love? Well. That is simply because doing something that you love gives a sense of joy and sell-fulfillment.
8. Make sure to have time with your family.
Having a lot of work/ things to finish throughout the day can be stressful. A simple breakfast with your family can surely reduce stress and at the same time, it can keep you motivated. I’m sure; your family is definitely one of the primary reasons why you are working.
9. Think of ways that you can do to make yourself better than yesterday; stay focused.
Whether it’s as simple as cleaning your room, learning a new skill like driving or cooking, a sense of fulfillment is sure to be experienced at the end of the day once you accomplish this.
10. Lessen time in watching television and spend more time listening to music.
Watching too much television can distract your focus throughout the day. On the other hand, music can be suiting to your ears and can help you stay focus at the work on hand.
11. Start your day at the office doing something that is important.
Having a priority list for the things that needs to be done a great day to motivate yourself.
If you finish doing the most important task for the day, that just means that accomplishing less important task can be accomplished easier and faster.
12. Make sure you only answer calls and chat which are important.
During working hours, there are times when we receive calls or chats online from certain individuals. This can be from friends, family members, workmates, and other individuals.
While it is fun to have a short chit-chat with them, remember that there are things that need to be done first. Spending too much time on phone with a peer can greatly distract productivity and before you realize it, precious time is wasted and you now end up cramming which may result to less efficient outcome.
13. Manage your time and energy efficiently.
Having good time management skills can help you save energy which in turn can help you end the day without any frustration or regret.
Remember, working under pressure can stir motivation but a leader works efficiently with or without pressure and produces the same positive results. Finishing a job early gives you the pleasure to spend the rest of your day without any worries.
14. Avoid doing busy work.
As written above; being busy with something is good as it helps you to avoid thinking of unhealthy thoughts. However, it does not always contribute to achieving good results.
Working on things unrelated to your work keeps you busy but does not actually make you productive. Whenever you do something, always make sure that this can contribute to your growth and career advancement. Always weigh if this will make you a better person than yesterday or if this would lead to failure or regret.
Being “busy” is a good thing, but being “productive” is much better because it is one factor that contributes to our total well-being.”
I hope this article taught you something about how to achieve success.
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