How to Feel Productive Without Being Productive

At last! A look at productivity that doesn’t just give writers what we need but goes way beyond that to what we want!

From Lifehacker

by Nick Douglas

Most people are interested in getting something done. But maybe you aren’t. Maybe you just want to feel productive, or efficient, or hard-working, without having to actually accomplish something. You can’t just start doing that. First you need to plan, and first you need to plan to plan.

Obsess About Tools

What do you need to get done? Well, check your to-do list. You have a to-do app, right? Theoretically, you could effectively manage your tasks with a notebook and a pen. But you don’t always have those handy, and you always have your phone handy, so you should handle your to-dos on your phone, so you should download a mobile to-do app, so first you should research mobile to-do apps.

There are literally countless to-do managers in the iOS and Android play stores rated 4+ stars; Google Play stops at 250. How do you know one of those isn’t 10% more effective than your current app? One of them has location-based reminders. One has calendar integration. One has haptic feedback. One has an especially handsome icon with a blue checkmark.

While you’re in the app store, update all your apps. Update the apps that support those apps. Update the apps you don’t use but might some day, so when you do use them, you won’t have to waste all that time updating them. Go to your computer, update those apps too. Download the desktop to-do app that syncs with your mobile to-do app. Sign into Dropbox to set up the sync file. Sign into Google to get the email confirmation from Dropbox. Sign into 1Password to get your Google password. Sign into Twitter in case you ever want to tweet your to-dos.

Download a minimalist writing app. Download another, fullscreen minimalist writing app. Download another, fuller-screen minimalist writing app. What is the most productive font? Customize the font. Customize the sounds. Customize the brightness. Switch to a Mac. Switch to Windows. Switch to Linux. Install Windows on the Mac for the apps that don’t work on Linux.

Check your work space. Does it look like one of our favorite workspaces? Why not? Why do you only have one monitor? You could do twice as much with two. Why only two? Research monitors. You only want to buy the best. Read Amazon reviews. Read independent reviews. Cross-reference them. Order your monitor. Don’t use your computer until you get the new monitor. You don’t want to wear yourself out with low quality single-monitor work.

While you’re at it, buy a new computer desk. Don’t use your computer until you get the new computer desk. Maybe you need a new computer….

Read it all at Lifehacker