Your Productivity Guide for 2021: Mindset, Setup, Action

It’s the beginning of the year and people want to revise their unaccomplished goals from 2020 and make the most of their time, energy, and skill. Hence, there’s no hotter buzzword right now than productivity. The overflow of information on productivity can confuse you to the degree that you wouldn’t even know where to start.

For this reason, we have compiled and compressed a hefty amount of information (links and resources) into a quick and easy guide. It touches on three core elements – mindset, setup, and action. It will give you a bird’s-eye view on productivity so you can jumpstart your personal and professional growth in 2021 without much fret.

How to approach this guide on productivity:

Understand that people have different standards and opinions of what “personal productivity” or “success” should look like. Trial and error. Try and see what works best for you. Adopt and adapt productivity systems and techniques to suit your needs. Take action. For it is better to be productive for 10 minutes than to think for 10 hours about being productive. Use the productivity apps and resources mentioned below. What is productivity?

Productivity is twofold:

There is workforce productivity, namely, the total amount of goods and services workers produce in a certain period of time. It refers to how a business can become more productive in the least time-consuming way to achieve a profitable goal (read up on how to calculate workforce productivity here). For example, it’s how a fast food joint can make more profit as workers make and sell more burgers per hour. The emphasis is on quantity.

As Paul Krugman famously put it:

Productivity isn’t everything, but in the long run it is almost everything. A country’s ability to improve its standard of living over time depends almost entirely on its ability to raise its output per worker. – Paul Krugman, Nobel Prize Winner in Economic Sciences

Then there is personal productivity, namely the relevant output of an individual in a certain period of time. It refers to how an individual can become more productive in the least time-consuming way to achieve a (personal) goal. Indeed, personal productivity may be applied to the workplace, yet its focus is on the individual rather than the business.

This type of productivity encourages a workplace culture of outstanding productivity. Basically, how a fast food joint can make more profit as workers make and sell burgers per hour by serving the customers better, by making fewer mistakes, by wasting fewer ingredients, by improving the burger-making process, etc. The emphasis is on quality.

Dan Kennedy defines productivity as:
“The deliberate, strategic investment of your time, talent, intelligence, energy, resources, and opportunities in a manner calculated to move you measurably closer to meaningful goals.”

The most common factors that influence personal productivity are motivation, personality, natural talent, training, education, environment, support, time management, luck, and good health. In addition, this article describes productivity factors you’ve never even considered. This guide will focus on personal productivity from here on.

10 simple ways to be more productive

Here are several actionable steps for beginners we will touch on our guide, so keep an eye out for further explanation:

Track your time.  Take regular breaks. Turn off notifications. Implement Olenski’s 2-minute rule. Use a Pomodoro to tackle procrastination. Quit multitasking. Setup

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