Counter-Productive Things People Do When Trying to Be Productive

Productivity is a big deal, and you only need to have a quick glance around the self-help section of your local bookstore or the assorted business training courses to be found online, to see that many people are very interested in finding ways of boosting their overall professional productivity.

With greater productivity, you can achieve more, in less time, can avoid procrastination and distraction, and can ensure that you're always putting your best foot forward when it comes to working on a given business venture of yours – or, for that matter, when striving to advance your career in a traditional job role.

Unfortunately, though, many people end up engaging in counter-productive activities when trying to be productive. Here are a few counter-productive things you should avoid when trying to put your best foot forward.

Cutting out sleep and skipping meals

Often, when trying to get a particular project done, or are trying to gain a professional edge, many people will cut out sleep and skip meals as a way of freeing up more time.

While this may work in very limited cases and for one-off deadlines, it's a terrible habit to get into on a routine basis, not least of all because of the fact that research has shown that sleep-deprived individuals significantly underperform on a range of different tasks, in addition to experiencing memory deficits, and all sorts of other issues.

On a similar note, although it may seem reasonable to work through your lunch break, if you make this a regular habit there's a good chance that you will be starving, annoyed, distracted, and incapable of doing your highest quality of work when in this state.

So, when you're trying to boost your productivity, avoid making yourself sleep deprived, or starving yourself.

Trying to multitask

For many people, the idea of "being productive" is intimately connected with the idea of multitasking – and it's easy to see the home it could appear more productive to juggle two or three different tasks at the same time.

As a matter of fact, however, whenever multitasking has been studied it seems to be the case that it leads to significantly reduced performance at every task being worked on, while also causing excessive stress to the individual who is doing the multitasking.

When you want to be productive, focusing on one thing at a time, and trying to shut out external distractions to the best of your ability, is likely to be a much more fruitful path forward than multitasking, and this is no doubt a key reason why Cal Newport’s anti-multitasking productivity book “Deep Work” is so popular.

Trying to throw money at a problem

There are many different issues that you might be confronted by over the course of day-to-day life, where investing some money can really help you to reach a positive solution.

If you had an accident, for example, hiring a car crash lawyer could certainly be a good idea.

In many cases, however, people try to overcome obstacles and enhance their productivity by throwing money at problems, in a way that is unlikely to lead to heightened productivity, or to a positive outcome as a whole.

Instead of paying thousands for a questionable online course on how to increase your earnings, you might be better off gaining more hands-on experience instead.

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