Updated: Mar 4
Being productive is a crucial aspect of our professional and personal lives. However, constantly striving to be productive can often have the opposite effect, leading to burnout and stress. Therefore, it is essential to identify what habits and mindsets we must let go of to improve productivity.
One of the most common mistakes people make is to push themselves too hard to brainstorm when they are in writer's block. However, as the book "Atomic Habits" by James Clear suggests, productivity is more about consistency than intensity. Consistently taking small steps toward your goals is much more effective than occasional bursts of effort. Therefore, when you are stuck, take a step back and focus on other tasks; this can help to shift your focus and can often lead to a breakthrough in your thinking.
One habit to let go of is the need to be perfect. Perfectionism can often hold us back from achieving our goals and lead to procrastination. Instead, focus on progress and improvement, and celebrate your small wins. As the book "Atomic Habits" explains, minor improvements done consistently can lead to significant progress over time. Therefore, focusing on the process rather than the outcome is essential.
It is also crucial to let go of the need to control everything. As the saying goes, "you can't control the wind, but you can adjust your sails." In other words, there are many factors outside of our control that can impact our productivity. Therefore, instead of trying to control everything, focus on what you can control, such as your mindset, habits, and routines. Mindset is everything. Creating a positive environment for yourself and developing productive habits can increase your chances of success.
Whether you think you can, or you think you can't - you're right." - Henry Ford
Another habit to let go of is the need to be constantly connected. In our digital age, getting distracted by social media, emails, and notifications can be easy. However, constantly checking your phone can interrupt your workflow and decrease productivity. Therefore, setting boundaries for yourself and limiting your screen time is essential. You can increase your productivity and focus by disconnecting from technology and focusing on your work.
Letting go of certain habits and forming new ones can be challenging, and it all starts with our mindset. The way we think about our habits, and our ability to change them, can make a significant difference in our success.
Here are some examples of how mindset is everything in letting go of certain habits and forming new ones:
Believes abilities and qualities are fixed and cannot be changed
Believes habits are a part of who they are and cannot be changed
Believes abilities and qualities can be improved through hard work and practice
Believes habits can be changed if effort is put in
Having a growth mindset
Can help stay motivated and persistent in changing habits
Changing Our Way of Thinking
Positive vs. Negative Self-Talk: The way we talk to ourselves can have a significant impact on our ability to change our habits. If we constantly tell ourselves that we can't change our habits or that we are not good enough, we are more likely to give up on our goals. On the other hand, if we use positive self-talk and affirmations, we can stay motivated and focused on our goals. For example, instead of saying "I can't do this," say "I am capable of changing my habits."
Reframing Failure: Failure is a natural part of the habit-changing process. However, some people see failure as a sign that they are not capable of changing their habits. They give up and revert to their old habits. People with a growth mindset, on the other hand, see failure as an opportunity to learn and grow. They use their failures as feedback and adjust their approach accordingly.
Embracing Discomfort: Changing habits can be uncomfortable and challenging. It requires stepping outside of our comfort zone and doing things differently. People with a growth mindset are more willing to embrace discomfort and try new things. They are not afraid of making mistakes or feeling uncomfortable. They understand that discomfort is a natural part of the habit-changing process and are willing to push through it.
Focusing on Progress, Not Perfection: Finally, people with a growth mindset focus on progress, not perfection. They understand that changing habits is a journey and that it takes time to see results. They celebrate their progress, no matter how small, and use it as motivation to keep going.
In his book "Atomic Habits," James Clear emphasizes the importance of mindset in habit formation. He argues that our habits are a reflection of our identity and that if we want to change our habits, we need to change our identity. He suggests that we focus on creating small, consistent changes in our behavior that align with the identity we want to have. By doing so, we can create new habits that are sustainable and help us achieve our goals.
Habits We Need to Let Go
There are many habits that can hinder productivity, and letting go of them can help you accomplish more in less time. Here are some examples:
Procrastination: Putting off tasks until the last minute can increase stress and decrease productivity. Scientific studies have found that procrastination is associated with lower grades, poorer health, and lower levels of well-being.
Multitasking: Trying to do too many things at once can actually make you less productive. Studies have shown that switching between tasks can reduce productivity by up to 40%. Instead, try focusing on one task at a time until it's completed.
Checking emails and notifications too often: Constantly checking emails, social media notifications, and other distractions can disrupt your focus and decrease productivity. A study found that it takes an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds to return to a task after an interruption.
Poor time management: Failing to prioritize tasks and manage time effectively can lead to a sense of overwhelm and reduced productivity. Studies show that time management training can improve productivity and reduce stress.
Lack of sleep: Not getting enough sleep can lead to fatigue and reduced productivity. A study found that sleep-deprived workers are more likely to make mistakes and have slower reaction times.
Neglecting breaks: Taking regular breaks throughout the day can improve productivity and reduce stress. Studies have shown that taking short breaks can improve focus and mental clarity.
Sticking to Positive Habits
Sticking to positive habits and being in the habit formation cycle daily is crucial for achieving long-term success and personal growth. Habits are powerful because they shape our daily routines, which in turn shape our lives. By forming positive habits, we can train our minds and bodies to behave in ways that align with our goals and values. Consistency is key when it comes to habit formation, as it allows us to establish new neural pathways and strengthen existing ones. When we make positive habits a part of our daily routine, they become ingrained in our behavior and become easier to maintain over time
Overall, our mindset plays a crucial role in our ability to let go of certain habits and form new ones. By adopting a growth mindset, using positive self-talk, reframing failure, embracing discomfort, and focusing on progress, we can increase our chances of success. Use Insumo to track your habits to manage your daily life. Download insumo from app store, or google play store.