Signals of being unproductive at work and how to overcome it
“Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning and focused effort.” — Paul J. Meyer
In today’s workplaces, increasing employee productivity has been the core of success.
In spite of the influx of varying technology at work like AI, automation, outsourcing and other software systems; a huge chunk is still people.
Motivating oneself to increase productivity may seem difficult. Individual productivity is not as simple as time tracking their breaks or putting a stop to the time spent on inevitable social networking. However, constant distractions around the workplace and time spent on social networking, does rob your focus and thus lowering the productivity output. This has a major effect on the success of one’s career.
Signs of being Unproductive at Work
- Nothing Makes You Happy: When you are exhausted, are low on energy and you treat everything as a duty; even things that you would otherwise enjoy, do not give you happiness
You fall into a trap of avoiding things like jogging, reading, singing or going out with friends as they are no more an energizer for you. You may also get extra cautious about things like your working hours and time for relaxation, as your agenda is to please your boss rather than achieving the goals.
- You are Super Indecisive: In spite of getting all your work done, your fatigue may come out in activities where decision-making is required. You may be competent in regular tasks of the office like creating PPT and analyzing spreadsheets but taking a decision on discontinuing a client which is not working as per company policy or as simple as ordering stationery for your department might be difficult for you.
Taking decisions requires attentiveness and alertness of mind, which is affected when your mental energy goes down.
- Always Doubting Yourself: Self-doubt is very common when you are indecisive in life; you start questioning yourself on many things. You become less confident, judge yourself by comparing with others and doubt your capability. Such a burnout makes you negative and you are prone to experience stress resulting in low energies to complete your tasks. If we combine these symptoms, it gives the feeling that nothing is going right in your life.
- You are Hard On Other People: Being a Self-Critique is good but an excess of it leads you to become hard on not only yourself but also on your colleagues. It creates a negative impact on your relations with co-workers plus lowers down your level of patience and develops an exhaustive atmosphere for everyone around.
- You’re Always Looking Forward To Things Getting Over: If in recent times you are more bothered about office timings rather than focusing on your work, then you are burnt out and not enjoying your work. Continuous looking at the clock and waiting for the office to get over leads to low productivity as your attention is not at work.
- Things Upset You More Than Usual: Another sign of being unproductive is getting stressed out over little things which would not have bothered you earlier. For instance, rescheduling of meetings or waiting for a colleague for lunch etc. This behavior can be the result of excessive tiredness and less control over your thoughts, which means small things can affect you easily.
- Your Heart’s Not In Your Work: Irrespective of the amount of work done, if you are doing it with a lack of enthusiasm then it is not considered as productive work. For instance, creating an informative and attractive PPT but delivering it in a non-effective way, does not make an impact on the stakeholders.
Unproductivity is Inescapable. But how to oscillate it and take charge of the situation totally depends on us.
Every individual has a different style of working. Few companies and employees still like to follow the traditional way i.e., working from 9-to-5 irrespective of the workload while others prefer a more flexible way of working. Putting these differences aside, there are three underlying ideas which apply to all our productivity tips:
- Trust the small increments. One cannot foresee change immediately in their existing working habits which have been developed over the years. Gradual and little changes in your style of working add up to a big shift in your productivity. Start with bringing changes in one area and keep adding to it as per the strategy that is best suited and works for you.
- Be accountable. Accountability is one of the important factors that enhances your work and leads to growth. Either it could be the weekly check-ins with a co-worker or being accountable to someone else or even deciding your own deadlines can often assist you to get the job done.
- Forgive yourself. Accept the fact that you are sometimes going to commit mistakes, become distracted and have a bad day. What matters is how you move on and learn from your mistakes. Stop being harsh on yourself.
Being more productive allows you to finish the tasks that really matter and enhance your career. It gives you the keys to get more done, make more money and live life to the fullest.
As an individual, it’s easy to slide into bad habits. But once you recognize the most common mistakes, you can act fast in order to fix them.