Problematic Productivity

Being productive is what modern life is all about right? We all have goals that we are tracking for our work, our health, our personal lives, and we are engaged in the ever onward march towards them. Ensuring we are as productive as possible on the way. But what do we do when productivity becomes problematic? Read in to find out.

Unclear goals


One reason you may see a drop in productivity in your work or home life is that the goals you are working too just aren’t clear enough. Goals not only have to show you where you are going, but they also need to be specifically relevant to your life.

It’s no good having a major life goal as owning your own house, losing 10 lbs, or getting a promotion, if you really don’t care about doing that.

This is your life, and to be the most productive you have to work out what motivates you and go for that, rather than something that is just generic.

Planning over action

No,  an issue I see a lot of these days in terms of productivity is the prioritization of planning over actual action. Now, I’m not saying that productive people don’t plan, they definitely do. But they don’t let the planning process take over and become the most important thing.

For example, if they are going to write a report they might plan it loosely, so they know what the structure is and get writing. They don’t need things to be perfect before they move from one stage to the next one. Which is an essential skill we all need if we are to remain productive.

Concentration and distractions

The next productivity problem that we are going to talk about is concentration and distraction, which are really the two side of the same coin.

It’s not always easy to concentrate on things for long periods of time. In fact, science has shown that humans are best at working in 30-50 minute bursts, with a short break in between.

This is what the Pomodoro technique is based on. Where you use a discipline for a laser-like focus for 45 minutes and then get to do what you want for the remaining 15.  Which many successful and productive people find very helpful.

Of course, sometimes issues with concentration aren’t just about having a disciplined method that works for you. They can also be caused by medical issues such as in ADHD, or depression.

If you are concerned about your ability to focus might be a medical issue then your best course of action is to do a little research on ADHD symptoms, and how depression can affect your concentration and see if they touch a chord with you. Then approach your medical professional for some further advice.


Lastly, something that is the bane of all productive people lives in the concept of multitasking or doing two things at once. Now with a few exceptions, it’s pretty impossible to do two things well at the same time. If you don’t believe me just try rubbing your belly and patting your head!

That means doing two involved jobs at once is practically impossible, so it much better for your psyche and your productivity to do one thing at a time and devote your attention to the task at hand.

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