We're often told that we must strive to be productivity machines, grinding through tasks and optimizing every second of our day.
It's the cool, hip new thing to talk about on Twitter and LinkedIn.
The accepted norm is now that to be successful, we must relentlessly systematize our entire day, from morning ice baths, to stretching, to Pomodoro timers, to daily journaling and reflection.
Is some of this stuff good? Sure.
Is this truly the path to success? No.
I've spent a decade building massively successful technology companies and now have spent the last 4 years building my own one-person business.
And I can tell you that I've witnessed, firsthand, the obsession with squeezing out every ounce of productivity.
Time and time again, I've seen this pursuit of relentless efficiency lead to burnout, diminished creativity, and even a loss of connection to what truly matters. Family. Personal life. Everything.
Is this the price of success? Must we sacrifice our well-being, our families, and our joy in the relentless pursuit of more?
I think there's a different path. One that might seem counterintuitive at first, but is rooted in real human need and a more balanced approach to life and work.
Efficiency Over Overexertion
Being efficient with our energy doesn't mean constantly striving to do more.
It means doing what matters most with focus and intention.
It's about choosing the right tasks, not all the tasks.
Efficiency means spending your working hours on what truly counts and then shutting off.
Why grind through the night when you can recharge, refocus, and come back stronger?
Relaxation and Recovery
Downtime isn't just a luxury; it's a necessity for everyone. I don't care how experienced you are.
How can we expect to be creative, insightful, and genuinely productive if we don't give ourselves time to relax and recover?
Are we machines, or are we human beings who need rest, recovery, and time to connect with what brings us joy?
Family and Connection
Spending time with family isn't a weakness. It's a strength.
It's where we find love, support, and a connection that fuels our passion and purpose in life.
Can success be truly fulfilling if it comes at the expense of these essential relationships?
This culture of non-stop productivity isn't just misguided - it's harmful.
It's time to challenge this newfound viral sensation and embrace a more human approach to business and life. It's not just about getting more done; it's about doing the right things, with the right energy, for the right reasons.
Are we so caught up in the rat race that we've lost sight of what success really means? Can we redefine success to include well-being, connection, and fulfillment?
I believe we can, and we must.
Let's start by rejecting the idea that we must be productivity machines and embracing our human needs for recovery, relaxation, and connection.
If we do, we'll build a more fulfilling and successful path in business and life.
This isn't just an alternative way of doing business; it's a more human way.
And it's more than OK; it's essential.