A SHORT TALK ABOUT PRODUCTIVITY

La productividad puede ser medida con muchos parámetros. Recuerdo que en algunos de mis trabajos de oficina, la productividad era una cuestión de “entre más horas pases en la oficina mejor”, aunque las tareas se terminaran antes… Sin embargo estos dos últimos años como freelancer me han enseñado que este término es muy elástico y que cada uno puede definir las reglas del juego. Eso sí, creo que el recurso más preciado siempre será el tiempo ya que esto sí es imposible de recuperar. ¿Cuáles son tus tips para mantenerte productivo y no perder la cordura en el proceso?/ Productivity can be measured with many parameters. I remember that in some of my office jobs, productivity was a matter of “the more hours you spend in the office, the better”, although the tasks were completed before the schedule … However, these last two years as a freelancer have taught me that this term is very elastic and that everyone can define the rules of the game. Of course, I think the most precious resource will always be time, since this is impossible to recover. What are your tips to stay productive and not lose your mind in the process?

PRODUCTIVE, NOT BUSY 👌🏽

TOP PRIORITY 🔝

Hay días en los que mi lista de tareas es apabullante y me dan ganas de renunciar a todo para mudarme a la vida de la campiña, pero después de inhalar y respirar me doy cuenta de que nadie se va a morir si algunas cosas no son hechas inmediatamente. Malgastar el tiempo en aquello que realmente no es importante para tu negocio o contestar todos los mails al comienzo de la jornada son mis males comunes. ¿La solución? Tener las prioridades claras para guiarte en el resto del día o semana. Otro tip es hacer al comienzo de la jornada aquello que menos te apetezca para quitártelo de encima, aplicar lo de: entre más rápido mejor./ There are days when my list of tasks is overwhelming and I want to give up everything to move to the countryside, but after inhaling and breathing I realize that nobody is going to die if some things are not done immediately. Wasting time on what is really not important for your business or reply every single mail at the beginning of the day are my weaknesses. The solution? Have clear priorities to guide you in the rest of the day or week. Another tip is to do what you don’t want to do at the beginning of the day, the faster the better.

LISTS + POSTS ITS 📑

Probablamente mis dos recursos preferidos para no olvidar nada, desde las deudas y obligaciones hasta las compras de ropa y skincare. Me declaro fan de la papelería y actualmente tengo más cuadernos bonitos sin utilizar que metas de vida . Lo que me ha funcionado es hacer dos listas: la de prioridades y la de aquello que puede esperar./ Probably my two favorite resources to not forget anything, from debts and obligations to purchases of clothing and skincare. I declare myself a fan of stationery and now I have more pretty unused notebooks than life goals. What has worked for me is to make two lists: one with priorities and another one with things that can wait.

THE POMODORO METHOD 🍅

El método pomodoro me ha salvado la vida en esos días en los que mi atención es la de un pez y me distraigo con facilidad. Es un reloj cuenta atrás de 25 minutos de trabajo y 5 ó 10 de break. AQUÍ el link para quien quiera utilizarlo./ The Pomodoro method has saved my life in those days when I have the attention of a fish and I get easily distracted. It is a countdown clock of 25 minutes of work and 5 or 10 of break. HERE‘s the link in case you want to use it.

SHUT DOWN DISTRACTORS 🔇

Haz un ejercicio de honestidad e identifica a tus principales distractores. Tampoco creo que haya que cancelar Instagram, los memes y los videos de hauls de belleza durante las horas de trabajo, pero si establecer límites de uso o hacer breaks concisos./ Do an exercise of honesty and identify your main distractors. Nor do I think that we have to cancel Instagram, memes and those beauty hauls videos during working hours, but it is effective to set some limits of use or make concise breaks.

PERFECT TIME? 🤔

Algunas personas creen que mi vida freelancer es levantarme a las 11 am, la verdad es que yo prefiero poner el despertador mucho más temprano para aprovechar las mañanas, que es cuando soy más productivo. Identifica esas horas del día donde tu cerebro funciona mejor, el horario de oficina de 9 a 6 no es para todo el mundo, y eso no está ni bien ni mal. También probar a trabajar con música o podcasts y mudar la oficina lejos del escritorio como un café o una librería son recursos que puedes explorar./ Some people believe that as a freelancer I can get up at 11 am, the truth is that I prefer to put my alarm much earlier to take advantage of my mornings, which is when I am more productive. Identify those times of the day where your brain works best, a 9 to 5 job is not for everyone, and that is not good or bad. You can also add some music or podcasts to your work routine or move the office away from the desk to a café or a bookstore, explore the possibilities of these resources.

SELFCARE ❤️

La lección más importante que me ha dejado la vida freelancer es que siempre es importante hacer tiempo para uno mismo: ahora entiendo que para alcanzar mis metas es necesario tener descansos, aburrirse y cuidarse a uno mismo para que la mente haga espacio para nuevas ideas y recargar la batería de la productividad. Ser tu propio jefe se vende como la fantasía más bonita en las frases de motivación para emprendedores, pero la realidad es que muchas veces solemos ser muy crueles con nosotros mismos y también es importante identificar las horas de descanso./ The most important lesson that freelancer life has left me is that it is always important to make time for oneself: now I understand that to achieve my goals it is necessary to have breaks, to be bored and take care of oneself so my mind can make room for new ideas and recharge the battery of productivity. Being your own boss is sold as the most beautiful fantasy in those motivational quotes for entrepreneurs, but the reality is that we’re often very cruel to ourselves and it is also important to identify the hours of selfcare.

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  • I’m really happy to see you back on your blog.
    Theses tips are amazing !
    Sometimes I get distracted so easily and what I can be done easily take me forever but I figured what’s work for me it’s to have a week schedule so I know what I need to do in the week.
    And I only add important things I need to do everyday so then it doesn’t give me too much pressure.
    And I need to try the pomodoro method It sounds pretty cool.
    xx
    Margot
    https://troughthepasturesofthesky.com

    • Thanks for the warm welcome, Margot! Happy to see you here too! 🙂

      And I’m glad you found these tips useful, it is so easy to get distracted easily with days with so many stimuli, right?

      Have a wonderful week ahead!xx

  • Your finishing words say it all. Sometimes being one’s own boss is HARD, especially if we happen to be strict with ourselves. There is always more responsibility involved and you don’t have the privilege of blaming someone else when something goes wrong. Self-care is important, especially when one is one’s own boss. You made some really good points in this post. I like how you make a distinction between productivity and being busy. Those are indeed two different things. We can be productive and not appear busy and we can think and appear to be extremely busy but don’t get that many things done. It’s the difference between quality and quantity perhaps…It doesn’t matter how much hours we put into something, it is the quality of our work that is important. Great tips too! Getting those things we need to do done in as little time as possible, that’s a great tip. It is also important to prioritize. This is such a great post!

    • Hi Ivana!

      You’re right, being your own boss sometimes it way more difficult to have an external boss, since there are many factors involved and many resources to manage, but little by little I’m learning more and more 🙂

      It is important for me to make a difference between productivity and being busy, I feel that nowadays many brands and influencers are portraying being busy as being productive and that’s not correct.

      Thanks as usual 🙂 !

  • As usal, I’m totally agree with you, Pablo: to be productive doesn’t mean to be busy (even if sometimes the second is a conequence of the first)!
    To stay productive I need to: first, stay organized, and second don’t get bored or I loose the focus very quickly.
    Really I follow almost all the tips you wrote here (except the pomodoro method, this is really the first time I hear of it^^) and I have to say that they work on me.
    But, the most important rule, to me is to break when I feel tired and maybe do some work out: this totally distract the brain and when you restart your work you can focus again all your attention on it!
    XO
    S
    https://s-fashion-avenue.blogspot.com

    • Silvia thank you so much for stopping by! I really appreciate your opinion and I’m very happy to know that these tips will be useful for you…. Really recommend you the pomodoro method: for studying, for working in your blog, etc….

  • Que agrado volver a leerte amigo. Tu post me llevo a mis dias de freelancer… que nostalgia… extraño mi epoca de freelancer pero tal como dices no es cosa facil y al final somos demasiado crueles con nosotros mismos, yo a veces me quedaba trabajando hasta las 3am y me levantaba a las 7 para comenzar mi dia… al final es un proceso de organizacion y balance.
    Como siempre, me encanto tu post 🙂 un abrazote!

    • Cher qué ilusión verte visitando el blog 🙂 Recuerdo muchos tips que te pedí cuando estabas de freelancer y definitivamente es difícil, por ahora seguiré en esta aventura pero no te voy a negar que hay muchas cosas difíciles en el proceso pero de todo se aprende!

      Besos!

  • I find it so difficult to try to balance all of these ideas. It’s also a difficult thing for me to find self care when trying to be productive – I often skip meals and sleep to work on a project which is never healthy. I will have to try harder to follow some of your tips though – I’ll let you know how it goes!

    Have a great week 🙂
    Amy x Wandering Everywhere

  • Hey Fungi,

    Your great article saved me again!
    Thank you for the information of Pomodoro.
    I just downloaded Pomodoro, so I will use it next day because now it is midnight in Tokyo.
    I really love your desk and your schedule’s memo,
    and your beautiful and cool life motivates me <3
    That baby’s breath on your desk looks so happy on your desk!

    akiko