I remember watching the “Last Lecture” of Professor Randy Pausch (video embedded below). One of his messages was “show me your calendar and I will show you where you are wasting time”.
He spoke of one difference between productive and non-productive people: How you use the small gaps.
Using the 5 Minute Gaps
The productive people have learnt to make good use of the 5, 10, 15 minute gaps in their schedule.
The non-productive people go and have a coffee, say “what can I really get done in 5 minutes, I’ll do it later when I have 2 hours.”
Productive people get all the admin tasks out of the way in the little gaps and then can do big, important projects in their 2 hour gaps.
Non-productive people wait for the 2 hour gap to do all the admin, and then are too tired to get started on the big, important projects.
Launching The “Nuclear” Productivity Option
First, this morning I started my day in a new way. I was so frustrated from my last week of low productivity that I went for the nuclear option today. Zero connectivity before midday. No internet, no phone, no messages – Nothing.
I went down to starbucks and closed down all programs except my word processor, and I wrote. Then when I ran out of writing inspiration, I read a book.
Second, I decided to do 1 phone call on my to-do list every 5 minute gap.
I got a lot more done today.
I aim to keep this going… Let’s see where I get over the next 7 days 😉
Randy Pausch’s Last Lecture: Achieving Your Childhood Dreams
If you haven’t seen this, watch it.
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How do you react when productivity feels low? What gets you going? Any ideas for my week of getting Productive again?