Short Bursts of Quiet In his book “Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less,” Greg McKeown refers to getting focused as being in the “Monk Mode.” The benefit to the Monk Mode is greater and higher quality work product. Given our time-starved world, it might be more effective to find Mini-Monk Modes throughout our day. Here[…]
The irony of the modern world is that we have more tools and information at our disposal than ever before, but we’re getting less and less done. Sure, there’s a lot more activity, but it’s productivity that matters – advancing the cause, moving the ball down the proverbial field.
There are many reasons for this and possibly as many suggestions for solving the problem. We’re going to focus on making one small slice of time – odd-lot time – more productive.
Making Odd-Lot Time Productive
Examples of odd-lot time include
- those minutes between when the meeting was scheduled to start and when it actually starts,
- the small (or large) slice of time commuting, and
- that brief period on the plane when everyone else is still finding their seats.
Time cannot be managed. It ticks inexorably forward. What we do with our time can be managed, and that’s what matters. So it’s not about time, it’s about focusing our effort on the things we want to accomplish.
Another word for accomplishment is productivity. Productivity is getting things done. We like to get things done. It’s makes us feel good – successful. The more successful we feel, the better use we are making of our time.
Productivity results from focused effort, not mere activity. Many people confuse activity with productivity. Activity is about motion itself. Productivity is about forward motion – accomplishment. Activity is often noisy; productivity is generally quiet.
- Question: How can we be more productive during our distraction-rich and interruption-riddled days?
- Answer: We can quiet down our physical and mental spaces.