The Desire for Maximum Productivity
I am 100% guilty of looking to books, experts, and podcasts to help me build better habits, be more productive, and get more done efficiently. There are so many reasons for this, but at the end of the day, it rarely feels like enough.
I’m not great at using planners, bullet lists, or even power hours. I don’t know, it’s like as soon as I say I’m going to do that thing or use that resource, I bulk at the idea. If I’m being honest, its probably because the desire hits deeper than any one item or method can resolve.
Maybe this feels relatable?
There are so so many legitimate reasons we find ourselves facing these feelings. I’m not here to solve all of it for us today, but instead share something that is working in my own life and business. And it doesn’t require a book, software, schedule blocking, or anything anymore complicated than a few staple items I complete each week.
Rhythms: Being More Productive and Satisfied By Tracking Less
They are a few simple things I do to keep the wheels on. If I stick to these few rhythms, other things seem to inevitably stay on track enough to keep everything moving forward in a productive, desirable direction (for the most part, most of the time. life still happens. we can never prevent that entirely).
If you’re expecting something revolutionary, you’re going to get a good laugh out of this because its the least fanciest, and doesn’t have a snazzy catch phrase or anything.
1: I wash our bathroom towels every Monday and the kids’ laundry on Thursday.
All the other wash- grown up clothes, kitchen rags, etc…fills the gaps and moves along with the rest of life without much issue. Just assigning these two days is enough to keep the laundry rhythm rolling.
2: We have our house cleaned every other week.
This is the motivation I need to to tidy up, put away all the random things I’ve been staring at on the counters, reset the playroom, and go through the mail I’m ignoring. Would this motivate someone else the same? I don’t know. I know I could just stack the mail neatly and have them clean around it. But, for me, I want a good clean and it gets me working on the things I otherwise tend to ignore.
3: Every night we start the dishwasher and prep the coffee so it can auto-start in the morning.
I didn’t realize that some people don’t start the dishwasher until it’s totally full. Don’t they know it inevitably it fills up mid-day, needs to be run, and while it is, the dishes somehow multiply themselves in the sink, on the counter, and anywhere else in the meantime? I don’t know how, but its some kind of kitchen sorcery, and the only way to prevent it in our house is to start with an empty dishwasher each morning.
Having the coffee start on its own just makes getting out of bed easier. Agree?
Finding Productivity in Rhythms for My Business on Social Media
4: I have regular content pillars that I lean on when preparing my content and posts.
When I have an idea for a post I can align it to one of those pillars to give myself easy momentum and a purposeful direction. This way I’m “throwing” one big boulder into the lake instead of 50 tiny pebbles. (Or however that saying goes…). It’s never uncool to be smart with your efforts on Instagram.
5: I make sure I have photos easily accessible at all times.
I snap photos in off times if I know they’ll make great images. I subscribe to a stock photo site, and I have done a couple photo sessions that last for months and months. It’s hard to post consistently when there’s never a good image on hand.
6: I use a “flow & go” framework for new posts.
Why yes, I do believe I just made up that term. And yes, I plan on keeping it. Catchy, right?! I guess this post does have one snazzy catchphrase afterall.
Each month I list out 10-20~ ideas for posts and then throughout the month I lean into the posts that feel most exciting for me to write about or helpful/valuable to my audience in that moment. Sometimes something new comes up along the way, and I can add it in no problem because I don’t keep things locked up based on an overly complicated content plan or laying out images perfectly in my feed. Feels soo good!!
A few other honorable mentions that create rhythm in my day, but aren’t based on productivity…
1 I open and close the curtains on the main level of our house each day. We don’t have blinds, but I think for me this is the equivalent of people who say that getting ready every day makes them feel more prepared and focused for their work. I feel like the day hasn’t started if the curtains are still closed.
2 I have a pretty relaxing evening skincare routine with products that I genuinely enjoy using. I am an expert at skipping repetitive tasks that feel “non-essential”. So for me this is almost like meditation. It takes a few minutes and I am present, noticing and seeing myself, and giving myself a few minutes of care and attention.
3 I use hot showers and neighborhood walks to transition from “work” to “off”. The commute to my upstairs office (or kitchen table) is short, friends. And I often have kids at home when I’m working, so there is not much to differentiate between the two sometimes. I have found this helps.
I hope this gives you a few ideas of how you can swap lengthy to-do lists that feel tight and rigid for fewer rhythms thats keep the wheels on in your own life.
If you loved this, join me over on Instagram where I share these types of chats with my followers regularly.
If you’re curious about more tips for planning your Instagram content and implementing the “flow and go” style like I mentioned above… be sure to check out Instagram Made Simple.