How To Feel Productive When You Don’t Feel Like Being Productive – My Blog

A person and a girl clinking espresso mugs in cafe


How can I really feel productive once I do not feel like being productive? initially appeared on Quora: the place to achieve and share data, empowering individuals to be taught from others and higher perceive the world.

Reply by Andrew Cohen, Founder & CEO, Brainscape, on Quora:

You know the sensation…

Your mind is offline, you shuffle about with the passion of the undead, and never even the triple latte you pounded again 20 minutes in the past is resuscitating your sense of ambition. At this level, most individuals quit and simply faux to look busy when, in actuality, they're taking part in Solitaire behind their boss's again and watching the seconds ooze by with the consistency of ectoplasm.

However what if PRETENDING TO WORK isn't gonna reduce it? What in case you have a extremely essential project, mission, or report due so that you HAVE to push by?

… and but you actually really feel like a zombie?

As an entrepreneur and CEO of a startup who can't afford to goof off when the zombie vibes set in, I've developed a toolkit to HACK MY BRAIN'S untapped power reserves, serving to me to reignite my focus, creativity, and general productiveness once I really want to.

I could not be capable of knock out one other 8 hours of labor with out a first rate meal and an excellent evening's sleep however these THREE TRICKS undoubtedly assist me squeeze out sufficient productiveness to wrap up essentially the most important duties in entrance of me that I actually need to get performed:


Let me guess: you're usually too drained to work however by no means too drained besides up your PS5 or watch a film, proper? It's because working—for most individuals—is, properly, "boring" to our brains. And since it feels boring, your mind exits stage left, leaving you with the psychological power of a cat caught in a sunbeam.

So what I do is that this: As an alternative of doing nothing in any respect, I take advantage of my "down intervals" to handle the extra brainless, admin-style duties that don't require me to assume, innovate, or make choices. (In the event you work remotely, you possibly can even commit the mortal sin of working whereas watching TV!) This fashion, I nonetheless get obligatory work performed however I save the low-energy work for my low-energy intervals.

Then, once I DO have power, I'll be set as much as effectively assault the extra cerebral duties on my plate: people who require studying, decision-making, and innovation. This trick applies whether or not you're working or at school or faculty and finding out.


Now, this will likely sound a bit of counterintuitive. Understanding if you're already drained goes to offer you MORE power? Don't fear, I'm not telling you to interrupt your bench press report or run a 7-minute mile. Research present that even transient, gentle bodily exercise may also help you get up and turn into extra alert. The truth is, this 2019 research discovered that fast morning train made noticeable variations within the consideration span, visible studying, and determination making of the topics concerned.

There are such a lot of easy issues you are able to do to handle your physique; issues which have the additional benefit of bettering your psychological well being and power. In any case, your physique is the place your mind lives: make certain it's a hospitable place to be!


Caffeine is commonly handled as a panacea to any and all drained emotions, however like some other chemical, it has upsides, downsides, and particular use circumstances. So earlier than you slam one other triple-shot iced latte, listed here are a few issues you might not learn about caffeine, and the way it ideally must be consumed:

First, one of the best time to drink espresso is NOT very first thing within the morning.

It's because your physique is of course making cortisol as a part of its boot-up course of, and stacking caffeine upon that cortisol could cause your physique to crash arduous a bit of in a while. So, save your first espresso or matcha tea (or caffeinated beverage) for after you've been up for 30 to 60 minutes, when your cortisol ranges are normalizing.

Second, don't knock your espresso again quick!

One of the simplest ways to drink espresso in order to optimize alertness is to ingest it in SMALL, FREQUENT DOSES: round 25 mg of caffeine each hour. In your reference, that quantities to a few quarter of a normal cup of espresso. As for these Starbucks Ventis? They clock in at 415 mg of caffeine, a dose that's extra more likely to ship you into atrial fibrillation.

Caffeine reaches its peak ranges within the bloodstream in 30 to 60 minutes and might stick round for 3-5 hours earlier than you begin feeling the crash. I take advantage of this data to plan out my caffeine consumption to be a slow-drip marathon, not a dash.

So these are my three methods for bettering power once I completely need to squeeze a bit of additional productiveness out of my day. The subsequent time you are feeling completely zombified, attempt them out!

The larger image, although, is to contemplate your habits and way of life selections as a result of a persistent lack of sleep, train, and the precise meals, and issues like alcohol can actually rob you of your power and vitality. It might be that with just a few tweaks you may make adjustments that deal with the foundation reason for your lethargy and never simply the signs.


This query initially appeared on Quora – the place to achieve and share data, empowering individuals to be taught from others and higher perceive the world.