The recent phenomenon of hustle culture, always striving for more and glorifying busyness, whilst deeming ‘rest only for the weak’, has led to increased levels of stress among entrepreneurs and working professionals. This toxic expectation of continuous hustling may, in fact, be hindering success. But there are steps that can be taken to return to peak productivity, without the endless working hours.
Hustle culture has led to unrealistic expectations, leaving many of us experiencing feelings of failure when these are not achieved. This leads us to feeling stressed and mentally exhausted, which is not a state conducive to productivity.
However, it seems that less may be more. Research suggests that working fewer hours may lead to increased productivityi. So perhaps it’s about working smarter, not harder.
For the last five years, performance coach and founder of the UK’s number 1 peak performance podcast Take FLIGHT, Mark Whittle has been travelling the world and speaking with some of the most successful athletes, entrepreneurs, and business founders to hear about the mindsets, philosophies and daily practices that have propelled them to reach their goals.
Mark reveals the secrets of the elite, uncovering the four pillars of productivity so that you too, can maximize your potential and avoid the trap of productivity stress:
Learning to plan and prioritize your work is vital for peak performance and productivity. Each morning, identify your most important tasks for the day – the things that, no matter what, you need to finish by the end of the day. With a renewed focus on what’s important, it’s easier to create a meaningful to-do list.
2. Peak Productivity Hours
Getting to know your ‘peak productivity hours’ and scheduling your high-value tasks around these times when you have the most energy is key to the productivity framework. More energy equals better results, faster. Be sure to eat a nutritious diet including foods rich in brain-boosting healthy fats and consider helpful food supplements such as Pro Plus® Ultra.
Thanks to its slow-release caffeine, Pro Plus® Ultra provides a sustained release of caffeine throughout your working day or night to help maintain alertness and productivity. With added vitamins B6 and B12 helping to reduce tiredness and fatigue, it can help give you the sustained support you need to power through your day.
You can have all the time and energy in the world, but if you are constantly being bombarded with distractions and interruptions, this will be sure to take a toll on your efficiency. Creating a space free from distractions is key to uphold concentration for extended periods of time. For example, keep your phone on silent or put it in another room while focusing on your key tasks. Not only will you be a lot more disciplined, but you’ll get a lot more done!
Nobody, not even highly productive people, can focus for eight hours straight. Taking regular breaks is so important to avoid draining your energy levels, which will inevitably affect your productivity. Go for a walk, read an inspirational book, or listen to a peak performance podcast. Find whatever works for you to switch off momentarily for an energy boost. Breaks that are even just a few minutes can help you to recharge and refocus to reach your peak.
Implement these four pillars of productivity and maximize your potential today.
i Shangguan, R, J DeVaro and H Owan (2021), “Enhancing Team Productivity through Shorter Working Hours: Evidence from the Great Recession”, RIETI Discussion Paper 21-E-040.