How To Be Productively Productive

December 6, 2013
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In my voyages I‘ve encountered quite a number of lazy folk, each with their own set of excuses as to what makes their vegetative states legitimate. I’ve heard many people defending laziness, but I’m here to dispel these unproductive purgatories and inspire you, my Internet compatriots, to get off your behinds and make something of yourselves. Because, really, laziness is too sweet a thing to have too much of; it should be savored, the rest of the time going to doing stuff that isn’t inherently a substitute for sleepy times.

being productive

Let me qualify laziness. I believe that all technological fun these days (spending time on them darned phones until the real world is alien) is a form of becoming a drone. Staring at a computer screen and sluggishly consuming information, although brain work to a point, is the same; all of it turns one’s experience into a squishy, semi-conscious ooze. And that oozy existence is as lazy as that in which one does nothing at all (although some well practiced meditation is not laziness, but temporally focused activity). Laziness is doing all that stuff that isn’t actually what you want to do (most of the time challenging).

I have a hard time believing, for example, that 99% of video gamers truly desire their couch and controller. Within each human creature is the innate desire to flip out and run through the woods hollering about stuff. Or creating stuff that may or may not be artistic. Or kneading their brand with actually difficult conceptual discussions. Even the most active distraction is a form of laziness, as it is part of the putty of an easier existence than the hard stuff that the human really wants to and should be doing. Like, I really want to write a novel but find lots of television shows to watch instead. That’s kinda lazy behavior, even though I’m using the programs in my writing.

Everyone should challenge themselves once a day to peer into their animal brains (their immediate consciousness) and pull out something difficult to accomplish.

being productive

For instance, write down some poetic or what have you. Or do some science, even if you ain’t a scientist. Experiment with your world, within the home, or in the woods behind your house (even you, city folks, need to get out and walk up a damn mountain). Set the goal of doing one thing every day or couple of days that could lead to (utter) failure. The feeling of having done something wrong or half-assed is an incredible rush and works as better inspiration than positive feedback (“You get an A, now leave my office”). You won’t be lazy anymore if you consistently fail just enough to manufacture some genuine imaginative, creative, or innovative work.

You don’t have to be a great poet or scientist or ninja or anything, either. All you have to do is have a body of work, of any kind, that acts as a tangible mirror of your abilities now and what said skills and ideas could be in the future. TV marathons, Buzzfeed (I love you, Buzzfeed), and .gifs (I also love you, .gifs) will never act as anything but baseline entertainment. Laziness isn’t just being sedentary; being a vegetable in this sense is not feeling at least a little that you are doing some damn business. My advice? Go do something really hard, fail at it, and see the possibilities of working your ass off and loving the exhilaration of that journey. Those 10,000 hours can’t be achieved through laziness, no matter how seemingly informative, entertaining, or otherwise time engaging.

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