There is no money to pay for time spent on pleasurable tasks – or to be able to do nothing at all. Increasingly, people complain that they lack the time to perform all the activities at their disposal and occupy their existence more with what they “need” and less with what they like to do.
Paradoxically, technological innovations, designed to facilitate human life, end up becoming real traps, time-sucking. More than that: modern life creates the feeling that it is essential to perform various tasks, making the schedule of commitments extensive and practically impossible to be fulfilled.
There is yet another problem that harms work and even social life: procrastination – a strange word that defines a very familiar behavior, which is the famous “later I do”.
People are not trained to “have time”
Considered the greatest specialist in time management and productivity in Brazil, consultant Christian Barbosa talks about how to avoid wasting time and, thus, make days more productive.
What are the main reasons why people “don’t have time”?
Christian Barbosa- They are diverse. The first is that they were not trained to do this. Productivity is a skill that develops, with the right method you learn that. Second, the excess of information. There is too much information today and it takes away our productivity and our time. Third, the wrong use of tools. People don’t use an agenda or notebook in the right way. They are lost, due to ignorance.
What to do to avoid this?
Christian Barbosa- The first step is to become aware. Nobody learns to have more time if they don’t want to have more time. The person has to say “I am suffering from a productivity problem and I need to learn the model to change that”. This self-knowledge is essential! Understanding this, she has to look for a methodology, a book, a course on this subject. When she does, she will talk about planning, organizing, structuring herself. Another fundamental thing is persistence. Nothing changes overnight. Sometimes she has been trained for decades to do it the wrong way and when she learns the right way it starts to change.
Is it the case of “putting on the agenda” a time to dedicate to family and friends, just as you do with professional commitments?
Christian Barbosa- It is a way of doing this, but it does not have to be a formal commitment. If she has these little activities that help her balance and put them on her agenda, it helps a lot. From reading a book, watching a series, listening to music, going out with important people in your life.
Technological innovations have the main objective of making people’s lives easier and, consequently, allowing them to have more free time. But what is perceived is the opposite. Because?
Christian Barbosa- Actually, today technology has been stealing more time than helping. First, because it is information that is easy to consume and fun. So it robs the brain of immediate pleasure and makes people focus on these tools. Second, no one knows how to use technology well and, as a result, the person gets lost. Another thing is to have self-control in relation to this. Know how much I am using technology to know how much it is helping me in a more impactful way.
The internet, especially social networks, ends up taking a lot of time in people’s lives, impairing professional performance and affective coexistence. How to avoid this?
Christian Barbosa- People have to understand how they are using it today and limit it. There are even apps, like Quality Time and Freedom, that help you measure how much a person is using each of these apps. If she understands this, she can do some things that block this overuse. It is really a control, as if it were Alcoholics Anonymous.
The word may not be very familiar to most people, but the behavior that it designates yes: procrastination is the famous “after I do”, a practice that is often automatic and unconscious but that brings losses that are often irreversible.
“Deferring tasks is taking care of people. The more technology, the more information, the more options. With that, they end up choosing to do the most “tasty” things, which give immediate pleasure, and not the least or nothing pleasurable and which give results in the long run. They fail to make the connection between today and tomorrow and end up postponing ”, explains Christian Barbosa.
According to him, one of the factors that lead to this is that people do not relate action to future results. “As he doesn’t think about why he is doing that task, the momentary pleasure takes over the pleasure of having that thing accomplished in the future”, he says. “It is necessary to transform the achievements of the future into the wishes of the present. When you are reading that book that never ends, think about what it will add to your life ”, he exemplifies.
Barbosa warns that people usually give a negative connotation to the word discipline. “They associate it with a situation of being stuck, but it’s the other way around. It means freedom! It means being focused on what you really want to do. There are two types of people: those who have discipline and make things happen and those who do not and let life go by. Discipline is the ability to contain our primitive desires, to want to sleep more, to eat what is not good … “The best discipline is the one that works best for you. There is no point in wanting to wake up at 5 am every day if your performance too early doesn’t pay off. This very famous phrase “No pain, no gain” is painless. Do not follow a pattern, but what is good for you ”, he concludes.
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