Productivity in Lockdown – A Need for Reform

Needless to say, that the COVID 19 has irrevocably altered the way humans view their daily hustle. Gone are the days when workspaces around the globe used to consist of coworkers banging their heads together to find the solution to a debilitating muddle. Instead, they’ve been replaced by coworkers asking you to check for an audio mismatch, seemingly oblivious to their neighbors screaming at the top of their lungs.

It’s thus rather unsurprising that people around the globe report witnessing a drop in their daily productivity levels. The current predicament dictates that people stay indoors, hence creating an aura of isolation, further solidifying a recalcitrant apprehension towards productivity. Such a scenario begs the question, “How must we find the will to be productive amidst an endless array of debilitating circumstances that beg us not to be the same?”

Productivity and Procrastination

All of us aspire to be productive in our lives; personal as well as professional. The idea of productivity serves as an antidote to our otherwise chaotic lifestyles. For a vast majority of us, productive work is synonymous with ticking things off a checklist. We often call it the to-do list. However, this simple deed does more than what you see prima facie. Ticking things off the list helps us feel a surge of dopamine, possibly even pushing us to do more, thereby knocking our productivity levels out of the park.

However, the antithesis to our otherwise flawless idea of productivity is an omnipotent force and an agent of chaos known as procrastination. The real idea behind procrastination is that our mind doesn’t want us to be productive. Procrastination is what you’d call its default state. Needless to say, it’s arduous to tackle. It creeps in on you in inconspicuous ways and consumes your mind to the point where you feel a subconscious apathy towards your work.

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The pre-COVID world did have plenty of ways for the seed of procrastination to bear fruit but it could still be controlled owing to a conducive working environment id est the office. An absolute lack of that working space combined with easy access to a promiscuous array of distractions consisting of daily hits of Netflix and YouTube has paved the way for procrastination to set off on a rampage, annihilating the will for productive work in the process.

The Right Approach to Productivity

One of the primary foleys that we’ve been committing is using brute force to accelerate our productivity levels. Such attempts might have worked in the pre-COVID era when we were surrounded by our coworkers to help us through the process, but are unlikely to bear results today, owing to the debilitating effects of isolation that we’re constantly experiencing.

An arguably better way to tackle the problem of productivity is to devise a strategy more relevant for the current, post-COVID era. The first step in such an approach is to accept the fact that our collective productivity levels are likely to decrease. Accepting this mere fact and withholding resistance can be massively liberating considering most of us feel the constant pressure to perform, even when the pertaining variables are out of our reach.

The next step is to try and figure out what drives us to work. A keen focus on our motivations will help us overcome the massive pull of procrastination, thereby liberating our energy to be focused on building a more conducive attitude towards work. 

The third step in the process is to build a conducive work environment that we’re proud of. It should consist of items that surround us in serenity and put our minds to peace. This will allow our mental bandwidth to expand for us to be able to tackle the more arduous tasks head-on.

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The last and arguably the most critical step in the process is to build a strong support system that can help us tread the rougher bits of this rocky terrain. It can be our family members, friends, or even coworkers. Having these people around us, even if in the virtual ether can tremendously ameliorate the juggernaut of a task that maintaining our daily productivity levels can be.

The Road to a Brighter Future

It has become increasingly evident that the COVID 19 is here to stay. Granted, humanity is going through a rough patch which it is struggling to bounce back from. However, we must have an optimistic outlook towards the predicament, including in our professional lives, vis a vis our productivity levels. The constant struggle for the surge of motivation we so desire is unlikely to be ameliorated anytime soon. But these steps might just help us overcome one of the gravest challenges humanity has ever encountered, and pave the way for a brighter future in the process.

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