You shouldn’t be doing what I do

Just like my tools may not work for you, all the productivity tips I have given you (like a weekly schedule) may not actually help you become more productive.

I’m sharing them because they work for me and they may work for you. Mike Vardy and Brett Terpstra talked about mood and mode on a recent Productivityist podcast — and they dove into exactly that thought.

A weekly schedule simply doesn’t work for them.

It’s entirely possible that trying out my way of doing things is simply going to be a step on your productivity journey. You’ll build a weekly schedule and find it works for a while but then realize that managing that schedule actually runs you down. Sure, it was effective at first when it was new and shiny but as time went on, it became a drain, but you feel bad for breaking out of the schedule you said was so awesome.

I don’t feel bad

Yeah that’s right, I don’t feel bad when I fall off the wagon or change my mind. Everything is always in a state of change.

Did you know I don’t do weekly pricing anymore? I do fixed rate pricing after talking about value with my client and then the billing terms are based on the weekly schedule.

Do I still think weekly pricing is pretty awesome? Yes I do. It’s certainly a hell of a lot better than pricing based on hours, which is entirely broken. Have I managed to solve every little issue with timelines taking too long on the client end? No I haven’t, and while weekly did a pretty decent job of keeping clients on track it did have some capping effect on my income and I didn’t like that.

I’ve missed my writing mornings for a few weeks now (though I’m hitting it as I write this) because I’ve been a bit lazy/sick and have taken the mornings slower at home for the last few weeks.

Not once did I feel guilty about it.

I don’t use the Pomodoro Technique every day despite me telling you it’s an awesome thing to use to keep you on track. I use it on days I’m struggling to hold any type of focus or I’m getting way too focused and don’t get out of my chair for hours, since prolonged sitting is terrible for your health.

You’re not absolved

The point here is that reading about how others do things and adopting their methods doesn’t absolve you of the journey to figure out what makes you most effective.

The only real thing you can hope for in adopting the productivity techniques of others is that it may be a shortcut to figuring out what makes you most productive.

Keep discovering and searching, and try to find something that’s just a bit better than what you’re currently doing. Don’t feel bad when you stop using some technique you used to say was the best thing since sliced bread. Figure out why you stopped and try to build out a system that keeps all your other issues solved and makes the current problem better.

photo credit: kwl cc

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