Micah Redding — humanity, technology & the future

I will not increase my productivity

New resolve:

I will not attempt to increase my productivity.

For years now, sites like Lifehacker and the original 43 Folders functioned by telling us small tips and tricks for improving our productivity and effectiveness. But that endeavor can easily become an obsession, and that obsession can suck your attention, and then your time, bone-dry.

One way to deal with that is to try decrease the time you spend reading productivity sites. But that is a self-reinforcing addict's move. The more you try to resist productivity sites, the more you focus on the productivity you're trying to gain by doing so. And so you're driven back into their arms.

So I'm going to read productivity sites. And I will continue to tweak my writing setup, and where I keep my files, and how I organize all the little to-dos in my life.. But I'm not going to do so for productivity. I will do so for the purposes I find along the way, and sometimes, just for the joy of tweaking. And I will give up the idea that I'm working towards some kind of optimal productivity or organization. Instead, I'll just enjoy the work, and the work of the work, and the work of the work of the work.

And just like that, I'm free.

Kit Johnson:

I spent about two years learning trying to get my computer to behave exactly as I wanted it to. I would spend six hours trying to get one little thing to work in a super-efficient way. The problem was, it would only save five seconds, and would probably break after six months of use. In the end I got so fed-up of it that I just started accepting my computer for what it is. It is beautiful (Ubuntu Linux 11.10). Like any relationship, there are things that could work better, but at the end of the day life was never meant to be like that...tweaked to perfection.

marlon @ productivity bits:

True! Obsessing about Productivity per se "can suck your attention, and then your time, bone-dry." That's what I've discovered also after building my productivity blog. I was in pursuit of that one productivity trick that will end this productivity pursuit. I ended up losing more time I mostly needed to be productive.