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I am most productive when I am interested in the work I’m doing.

I am most productive when I have a due date, and there is a real person expecting my results on that date, and especially if I know that the client of my efforts will be in a difficult position if I don’t deliver – in other words, the deadline is not an arbitrary.

I am most productive when I get out of the perfectionist mindset and into the just-get-it-done mindset.  This tends to happen on every project as the deadline looms.  I need to get better at making the switch sooner.  Some people have the just-get-it-done mindset by default.  These people amaze me, they are maximally productive by habit.
 
When I have not been productive, I feel:

  • anger at myself, for sliding back into the same bad habits again
  • dread, over having to tell the boss/client that it’s going to be late, and having to make excuses
  • fear, of contacting stakeholders for further information, because now they will realize that I’m just starting the work
  • despair, that I’ll ever get my life going in the direction I want it to go

 
Tactics that rarely incent me to work harder:

  • meticulous planning
  • obsessing over the consequences of non-performance
  • deadlines set far in the future
  • setting personal rewards for completing work on time

 
How about you?  Anything to add?

-J

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