Today’s post is brought to you by Emma Neustaedter a partner of rachelfrom.com since her debut as the first Style Story found here. Emma is 20 years old, pursuing a career in education, and living each day to the fullest.
When Rachel originally asked me to write this post she asked me to write along the lines of productivity. I instantly agreed but as I had time to digest the topic further I thought about why to we strive to be productive and I wanted to stress the importance of being productive as an act of generosity and unselfishness. I’ll break down what I mean further in the post but what this practically looks like is having effective time management so that you can give freely to others and fully invest in multiple areas of your life. Below I will list 5 ways to become more productive followed by 5 outcomes/benefits to being productive.
The act of physically writing out project deadlines, coffee dates, meetings and the many other things we encounter in our day to day life is so important. This firstly allows you to see your schedule on a visual level and understand how much you have to get done. This also shows you when you’re free and when you need to use your time effectively. Having the ability to cross things off as you complete them provides one with a sense of accomplishment and generates a mindset to be further productive.
I know that as a university student our sleep schedules vary drastically each day but it is so important to maintain somewhat of a consistent sleep schedule. This allows your body to fully replenish and be awake and prepared to conquer the day. Napping is also an important tool that when used correctly can be extremely productive. By this I mean taking power naps (around 30 minutes) this is a short but effective amount of time that allows you to refuel but does not take up hours of your day and leave you feeling even more tired.
As crazy as it sounds I 100% believe that being involved in ministries or athletic teams or anything outside of just your regular class schedule allows you to be more efficient with your time. How many times do you go home and put off work saying I have hours to accomplish this I don’t need to do right now? I bet more times than you would like to admit. However, being involved in extracurriculars requires you to use every spare minute you have to be accomplishing those given tasks. Being involved also generates a sense accomplishment and productiveness as you are working hard in multiple areas of your life to accomplish goals on various fronts.
For some being a productive person means you are on the go pretty much 24/7 and others they are productive but just have fewer commitments and therefore have more free time. Both are great but only if you are taking/using your alone time effectively. I am the biggest hypocrite on this one as I rarely take the time I need to refuel but I’m working on it as taking time for yourself looks like something different for everyone. For some it may be doing devotions, reading, going for a walk, listening to music and these are just a few but whatever it is make sure you are taking time away from all distractions and using that time to reflect and refuel.
I often leave a conversation, class or some sort of encounter feeling as if I was not fully present. This feeling of not being present or engaged is not great for two main reasons. Number one being you were not able to make that time meaningful and really appreciate whatever valuable things it had to offer and number two, (to put it bluntly) you wasted your time. That conversation wasn’t productive and now you took more time out of your day that could have been used for something else. By being present you are fully engaging in each moment and making the most of your time.
I touched on this point earlier but the most immediate and recognizable benefit of productivity is feeling like you accomplished something. Everyone loves the feeling of being productive as you were both smart and efficient with your time and abilities and it ultimately leaves you feeling fulfilled and happy.
Everyone encounters serious daily stresses and a significant way to limit stress is by being productive. This allows for you to get your work done on time and in an effective manner that ultimately limits the stress of having so much to do in a short amount of time.
Productive people have a high success rate as they can take on a lot of responsibilities and complete them in an effective manner. This high level of achievement often results in security in the workplace and being promoted in various areas due to the discipline and high efficiency of an individual.
One of my least favourite things to hear is that you can’t do everything and you won’t be good at everything. As hard as it is to hear, it is true! We don’t have enough time to do well in our classes, workout, volunteer, be with friends and whatever else we want to do. Once we understand this we can determine our priorities and manage our time accordingly to do what matters most to us.
I strongly believe that we are all called to a life of giving to others and that what we do and accomplish should be for the greater good of society and ultimately the betterment of God’s Kingdom and not just merely for our selfish desires. When we are productive we allow for more opportunities to open up to serve and give freely to others.
Being productive is highly beneficial in many ways and as we all want to strive to be more efficient people we must keep in mind why we are doing these things. The motives may be different for each individual but ultimately we should strive to be more generous with our time. To give selflessly is such a beautiful thing and leaves you with an ultimate fulfillment knowing you are doing your best to serve and love those around you.
Lots of love,