Today’s post is inspired by a recently read by me book “Inaczej” by Radek Kotarski (unfortunately available only in Polish), in which the author tries to show, “How to work less, but better and more enjoyable”. What is important, the information is based on many sources and scientific research.
At the same time, I decided to test the available tools to automatically generate content with the support of artificial intelligence algorithms.
The following sections of the article primarly reflect the chapters from Radek’s book, in each of them I’ve listed my subjectively chosen elements which are worth paying attention to, and I’ve also included descriptions generated automatically by Peppertype.ai and Rytr.me tools. I encourage you to do your own tests with the mentioned generators, I personally think they did quite well.
- Think about how you define your success in life. Is it really your definition, including what really matters to you?
- Do you feel you have control over your life, your work?
- Do you use work as a measure to judge yourself or others?
Real Meaningful Success is being able to look back on your life and say, “I made a positive difference for the better in other people’s lives”.
Achieving success is a journey. It is not a destination. The moment you achieve success in one area, you will want something more. So, true success cannot be achieved. But, I think we have to experience it at least once in a lifetime in order to move on to the next stage of life. You can never be happy if climbing the ladder of success is your only happiness. You need something that is more meaningful and lasting. And, I think it is your family, your children or your spouse. That is what keeps you going when everything else fails. It is not about having a fat wallet. That is nice, but it just doesn’t define you.
- In life, we are driven by internal and external motivations. It is important to discern in ourselves which ones drive us and under what circumstances.
Motivation to do a job is an inside force that makes people want to do something. There are two main types of motivation: intrinsic and extrinsic. Intrinsic motivation is when you do something because it is personally fulfilling. People who are intrinsically motivated don’t do something because they will be rewarded for it; they do it because they want to. Extrinsic motivation is when you do something because you will be rewarded. For example, you would want to get a high grade in a class because of the reward (good grade) that the teacher gives you for doing so. You would not want to do something for your job if it did not benefit you in any way.
When you’re feeling lazy, unmotivated and not in the mood to work, here is a list of proven techniques to increase motivation:
1. Take a 5-minute break. Go rest on your couch, sip a cup of coffee, just to get what you call ‘a break’.
2. Drink a glass of water.
3. Take a walk outside
4. Exercise. Even a small gesture of exercising can do wonders.
5. Turn on some music.
6. Call a friend.
7. Tell yourself that you are awesome.
8. tell yourself that you’re the only person who can do the job.
9. Tell yourself that this is the day when you will make good progress.
10. Tell yourself that you are doing this for the future.
11. Tell yourself that you are not losing anything by not doing anything.
12. Tell yourself that you will get back on track soon. And yes, keep telling yourself that you can do it.
- Try to find the source of putting things off in yourself, and then try to reduce it.
- Consider what type of procrastinator you are: more relaxed or more tense?
- Put more effort into systematic work.
- Pay attention to small successes.
- Break work down into smaller tasks and take breaks in between.
I’m sure that every single one of us has been procrastinating at some point in a lifetime. Procrastination is the avoidance of doing a task that needs to be completed. It is the act of doing something else instead of what should be done. Procrastination isn’t always harmful, sometimes it can be a good thing, helping us relax and take a break from the tasks that we have to do. Having a procrastination time is actually a good thing because it helps us to relax and gives us a break from doing difficult tasks. But, when it becomes an everyday thing, it has a huge impact on your life.
Procrastination is a symptom, not a disease. The deeper substrate is fear, which causes procrastination. The fear is not of the work, of the result or of the task. It’s the fear of the self. It’s the fear of confronting oneself. It’s the fear of seeing oneself. It’s the fear of one’s own authenticity. The way to defeat procrastination is to face oneself. This can be done in two ways. The first way is to eliminate the need to procrastinate by being honest with yourself. You will procrastinate if you intend to do the work and find it not worth your time. You will procrastinate if you’re not clear about the work you need to do. You will procrastinate if you’re not clear about your priorities. You will procrastinate if you do not have a system that works for you. The second way is to do the procrastinated work without justification. Don’t just do it, but do it without justification. Don’t wait for the right time, the right place, the right mood. Do it now. Or do it here or do it there or do it anywhere. You’ll figure out the best way to do it. But do it. Just do it.
- Beware of too ambitious and difficult goals – this is not always a good approach. It can lead to bending reality or simply cheating, on the other hand it can reflect negatively on our psychological condition when we push too hard, “because everything is possible”.
- Pay attention to whether you are defining your goals too narrowly, stopping paying attention to other important things, or not recognizing the need to modify it when circumstances change.
- Parkinson’s Law says that work expands to fill all the time you have planned for it, see if this occurs for you.
- Sometimes it is the external factors, completely beyond our control, that will make us fail to achieve what we planned. This is normal, take it easy.
I am very against the “goal setting” method. Not the process of goal-setting, rather the focus on goals to the exclusion of everything else. I believe there is a “flow state” of productivity that can be achieved by everybody. In the flow state, one does not think about the task at hand, there is no self-consciousness, and no anxiety. Flow state can be achieved if one takes every action with the intent of making progress towards their goals. It is my opinion that using goals as a baseline motivator is a mistake. You should aim first to achieve a flow state of productivity, and goals should be a secondary motivator that reinforces the flow state.
A sense of timing
- Each of us has our own windows of time during the day when we function most effectively. Pay attention to how your body functions and structure your day to best work with your body’s capabilities.
- Don’t try too hard to bend your natural predispositions, for example by drastically changing the times you go to bed and get up.
- Observe the times of day when your creativity is at its highest. There are also less obvious moments when our mind gives us interesting thoughts, for example during the evening toilet.
Yes, it actually does. Our mind has a natural cycle that affects our performance. It goes like this; morning, mid-day, afternoon, evening and night. Morning is the peak time for freshness, happiness, and our ability to decode information. Mid-day is the peak time for our ability to come up with new and innovative ideas. Afternoon is the peak time for our ability to focus on tasks. Evening is the peak time for our ability to be creative and enthusiastic. Night is the peak time for our ability to make complex decisions. Yes, it actually does. Our mind has a natural cycle that affects our performance. It goes like this; morning, mid-day, afternoon, evening and night. Morning is the peak time for freshness, happiness, and our ability to decode information. Mid-day is the peak time for our ability to come up with new and innovative ideas. Afternoon is the peak time for our ability to focus on tasks. Evening is the peak time for our ability to be creative and enthusiastic. Night is the peak time for our ability to make complex decisions.
- There are many strategies to improve performance – the best effect is to test them on yourself and choose the one that works best for you.
- There is a cost to making any decision, even a trivial one. Nowadays it is more and more common to grow tired of the number of choices we make. It is worth paying attention to this and trying to reduce it throughout the day so that the most important decisions are thought out.
- Learning to choose what is really important and what is really worth doing on a given day is a considerable art.
The first thing to do is to prepare the night before. Before going to bed, when you are relaxing, take a few moments to reflect on the things you have to do the next day. Decide which task you will do first, which one comes second, and so on. Then, when you are in the morning, you’ll only need to take care of the first task on the list. The others will be in your mind, and maybe you’ll even start working on them. The things you have to do can be related to your job, but also to your personal life. Remember to prepare your action plan for the day. This is a great way to manage your time effectively. In short, the last thing before you go to sleep and the first thing in the morning is to write your action plan for the day.
It is very exhausting to make repetitive or unimportant decisions. There are many cases of decision-making fatigue. Decision-making fatigue can be caused by factors like time constraints, emotional stress, and lack of mental energy. It can lead to depression and anxiety. It is important to take care of the health during these times so that decision-making can be easier.
Decisions cause fatigue. If you are making a lot of decisions, you will make them less well — and therefore less profitably — than you should. We make decisions on the job, at home with our families, in our communities, and in our personal lives. It all adds up. Stress and fatigue are normal and unavoidable. But you can prevent decision fatigue and, in the process, make better decisions at work and at home.
- Once and for all, get the idea that rest is for the weak out of your head.
- Introduce breaks that actually regenerate instead of further draining you of energy.
- A short nap during the day can be a very good plan.
Most of the people are not aware of the importance of resting. We are just getting used to the idea of resting, but we are not in favor of resting. We are used to the idea of working so many hours, that we have become unable to enjoy our time when we rest. Resting is good, in fact we have learned to rest in a wrong way. Instead of resting properly we have become used to having something near the bed. A television, computer, mobile, magazine and so on are what we have near our beds. It is very important to rest with our eyes closed. The most important thing is to rest free from technology. We all know that we cannot use technology in the same way when we are rest. So we should all make sure that we have no electronic gadget near us, as we rest. Free from any type of technology, we will be able to rest in a more healthier way.
Being tired and not feeling rested can lead to health problems and decrease mental and physical productivity. It is important to take breaks throughout the day in order to keep your work at a good quality.
- We don’t multitask – each switch of focus to another topic costs us energy and time.
- Look for distractions around you that imperceptibly steal precious moments from you each day.
- Take advantage of solutions such as focus mode or night mode on your phone.
Deep work is the ability to stay focused on a task for hours on end. The internet has given us the ability to access any information at any time, but it has also increased our capacity for distractions. We are constantly bombarded by notifications, emails, and texts that serve as interruptions in our day. Our attention span is diminishing with every notification we receive.
This section is about how to eliminate distractions, deep work and stay focused on the task at hand without getting distracted by all of the things happening around us.
Here are some tips for eliminating distractions:
– Put your phone away when you work (or turn off notifications) .
– Turn off notifications from your email or social media apps .
– Be aware of what you’re doing and if it’s important.
There are 5 rules to eliminate distractions:
1. Eliminate or restrict all distractions, especially social media, email, and all other non-essential websites.
2. Always work in a quiet area, with no distractions such as a TV or loud music.
3. Switch to airplane mode if you can’t turn off the internet.
4. Set reminders that alert you when it’s time to get back to work.
5. Designate work time that is guaranteed work time, and nothing else.
- Pay attention to the little things, appreciate small steps and successes.
It’s not the big wins that make our day, it’s the small things. From getting up in the morning and going for a run, to taking a moment to breath in the fresh air, to sharing a smile with a stranger, to finding a 5 Dollar bill in the street, or helping someone in need. Consider small things you can do each day that will make you and others happier. And if you’d like, join us in the pursuit of happiness…
I’ve learned that it’s the little things that make the largest difference. It’s not the grand gestures, or words of affirmation, but the little things that so often go unnoticed that make a difference in my day. The random hug in the morning, the unexpected thank you, the unexpected phone call, the act of service that makes my day go smoother, the unexpected email, the unexpected text, the way that you said something that made my day better. These things may not seem like much, but to me, they’re a part of a life worth living. To my husband, these same little things mean a world of difference to him.