This sounds like a clickbait title, but hey, at least it’s not a list post. Hear me out though.
Honestly, it’s hard to name something in the few words you get with an article headline.
Especially something like this that requires an explanation, regardless of how simple it sounds.
The thing is, there is one productivity tip that is the most effective way to get stuff done, but it’s rarely talked about, and I can’t explain it in a headline, so I’ll explain it in this 3-minute-read.
Want to Be More Productive? Here’s the Secret
I’m going to give this away right now, in the beginning, but you must know three things:
- It’s going to sound really stupid.
- It works, so ignore how stupid it sounds.
- You must keep reading to take full advantage.
I need you to bare with me and hear me out, so put your thinking cap on (I love clichés).
Here it is: the best way to be more productive is to be productive.
We’re both adults here, so let’s be honest. You don’t feel like doing stuff…way too often, as far as you’re concerned. You want to be more productive, but you don’t “feel” like being productive. Well there is the energy factor, and you need to be self-aware of your own moods and methods, but as an adult, you’ve just got to start doing.
I know you don’t feel like it, but since when has that been a thing for adults? You do it anyways, and here’s why:
When you start getting stuff done, checking off that to-do list, and seeing results, the motivation comes. Motivation is not something you need in order to start getting things done; motivation is something that comes with action. And you know it. Action is powerful; it creates motivation, and it cures fear.
When you start seeing progress, it’s easy to keep going. But you have to get started. That’s why this isn’t talked about in every productivity article — because it’s hard. But all you have to do is get started, see what I’m talking about, and then it will click. From there, you’ll be able to do this all the time.
Riding Motivation Waves
You know what a motivation wave is, because you’ve experienced it before.
That time when, out of nowhere, you decided to organize your entire DVD library. Or the time your house was messy for weeks until one day you decided to clean and you cleaned the entire house before dinner. Those are motivation waves. They’re very real, and you must take advantage of them.
Sometimes they show up unannounced, and we don’t know why, but you have to use them wisely. But the more important thing to know is that you can create motivation waves by taking action and getting stuff done. Motivation always follows action.
Listen to Dr. B.J. Fogg, originator of the Tiny Habits movement, briefly explain motivation waves:
You’ve experienced this, right? I think we all have.
Putting it All Together
Remember, motivation waves don’t always come unannounced. You can create them with action.
So once you start acting, and you create a motivation wave, ride it out. Here’s what it looks like:
- Take action.
- Let the motivation hit.
- Ride the motivation wave.
If you want to know more about motivation waves, here’s a more detailed video from Dr. Fogg:
Once you start to implement this on a regular basis, you will start to see huge results.
You’re essentially batching tasks together, and using action to create the motivation required to complete those takes.
And it will work wonders. Try it.
The next time you have a couple hours free, make a list of things you need to do, and start acting on them. Watch how it gets easier and easier as you go through the list. The motivation will get stronger as you check off more things and get everything done.
It’s not hard to get things done, it’s only hard to get started.
You could always boost the time by taking caffeine before you get started, but only if you’re working in the first part of the day. The caffeine and the motivation wave will keep you awake if you start too late.
This isn’t all just a “good idea,” it’s an actual method that works. I have used this method over and over, and the motivation does come. And then riding a motivation wave feels so productive. There’s no better way to get a large task, or a long list of small tasks done. And there’s no better way to spend a few free hours.
Have you experienced motivation waves? Do you take advantage of them? Share below!