Whether you run your own company or work for a major organization, chances are you’ve experienced feelings of unproductiveness at some point or another. Is it frustrating? Of course.
However, a seemingly idle afternoon doesn’t have to be considered a failure. In fact, there are plenty of ways to not only turn your day around, but to change your perspective altogether.
Begin by accepting that not every day is going to feel like a game changer.
Acknowledging that you don’t need to conquer the world every time you sit down at your desk may feel counterintuitive. However, choosing to do so is a critical step toward neutralizing unnecessary pressure. While timetables and scheduling are essential to most modern day businesses, they are not approached by every professional in the exact same way. Accepting that you’re a human being who experiences waves of emotion, energy and yes, productivity, is not an act of defeat. It is instead a deliberate decision to address your blocks and to move through them in a way that works for you.
Take a break.
Constant time spent in the act of doing can wreak havoc on one’s ability to think creatively. So if it’s inspiration you’re lacking, you may want to find a way to reignite your imagination. How you choose to do this is entirely up to you. For some, inspiration comes in the form of meditation, while for others it can be found within a meaningful conversation. Where it often does not lie however, is on the surface of an empty page. So if blankly staring at your project has yet to yield tangible results, it may be time to jig up the formula.
Take a step back from your work even if only for a few moments. Grab a coffee. Go for a walk. Do something that allows you to temporarily abandon the project and come back with changed perspective. It may feel uncomfortable at first, but you’ll probably thank yourself for doing so later. Who knows, you may even start sprinkling micro breaks into your regular schedule.
Do something that adds value to your life in some way, even if it’s not work related.
Feeling unproductive can have a spiraling effect on your entire day. To help you maintain a positive mindset consider jumping into something that you value, even if it’s not the project at hand. Whether that means finally folding a pile of laundry or organizing the paperwork at your desk, find something to do that will make you feel useful.
Change up the energy.
Sometimes things just start to feel stagnant. If you’re struggling to snap out of a period of unproductivity, try clearing your workspace. It may sound a bit New Age-y at first, but opening the windows, lighting a candle and/ or doing a little cleaning can create wonders for both your physical and mental state.
Make a list of what you need to get done, then cross at least one off for the day.
While writing out the items you need to complete may feel overwhelming, it will also force you back into action. By crossing off a task, even if it’s small, you are actively reminding yourself that you can in fact be productive. On some days the bare minimum will be all that you achieve. However, something is always better than nothing at all, and in time, the sum of small acts can yield incredibly great results. So do what you can, and have faith in where you’ll end up.