The Three Ingredients of Productivity

Blog Post created by lisa.crilley Advocate on Aug 15, 2016

Work Less. Achieve More. Who doesn’t want that?


So the question becomes, “How can you increase your capacity each day?”  


How can you become the most efficient, effective, and productive you possibly can?  


I’m reading The Productivity Project: Accomplishing More by Managing Your Time, Attention, and Energy by Chris Bailey. Chris explains that our definition of productivity has changed over the last 50 years.


During a time when most people worked in factories, productivity was measured by doing the job more efficiently. How could you streamline a process so you could produce more widgets in less time?


Now, our work product has shifted a bit. We now deal more in intellectual capital than ever before. Producing more widgets in less time is no longer the biggest measure of productivity. Now productivity is more about how much you accomplish.


According to Chris, working smarter by managing your time, energy, and attention has become the new definition of productivity.


Productivity Project"I couldn’t stop marveling at how interconnected and important all three of the ingredients of productivity are. For example, getting enough sleep requires more time, but it boosts your energy and ability manage your attention. Eliminating noise and distractions also takes time, but helps you manage your attention better because it provides you with more focus and clarity throughout the day. Changing your mindset takes energy and attention, but will let you get more done in less time.


All three are vitally important. If you don’t spend your time wisely, it doesn’t matter how much energy and focus you have – you won’t accomplish a lot at the end of the day. If you can’t focus or bring a lot of attention to what you’re doing, it doesn’t matter if you know what your smartest tasks are or have a ton of energy – you won’t be able to engage fully with your work and become more productive. And if you can’t manage your energy well, it doesn’t matter how well you can manage your time or attention – you’re not going to have enough fuel in the tank to get everything done that you intend to.


When we waste time, we’re procrastinating. When we can’t manage our attention well, we’re distracted. And when we don’t cultivate our energy level, we’re tire, or 'burned out'."


His words have hit a strong chord with me. In fact, I’m currently going through a rebranding process, as my beliefs regarding productivity have shifted. Before, I spent the majority of my focus on time. Instead of being known as a time strategy visionary or time management coach, the words Capacity Coach better define my focus and beliefs, and so now I spend much more time with my clients in all three areas (time, energy, and attention). Reading this book after starting my rebranding process really solidified these beliefs for me.


The point of this post is YOU, not me or my focus. Do you agree with this “new” definition of productivity?


How do you manage your time, energy, and attention to make sure you aren’t procrastinating, distracted, or burned out? Comment below and share!