The 20-minute rule

I read something on LinkedIn on productivity and wanted to share it with you.

We are no stranger to the feeling of feeling exhausted after a long day’s work and commute, and only wanted to lay on the sofa netflixing. Admit it, it’s human nature to be lazy and it takes efforts and focus to be productive after work. You may ask why do we need to be productive if we already work hard during the day. Well if you are like most people, spending hours watching TV while browsing online without a purpose doesn’t make you recharged. Recreational activities just for the sake of killing time actually makes people feel less fulfilled and sometimes guity. Also, it’s probably already late after you finish TV and you will end up having a hard time waking up early the next day, which makes you even less energetic. The vicious cycle continues and you will be waiting for Friday to come. 

Don’t you want to become those people who are energetic and positive, and manages to actually learn or accomplish something in their spare time that they can put to use some time in a few years down the road? That could lead to a great sense of achievement and financial freedom if the hobby/side gig turns into some more serious business. 

You will never achieve whatever goals you have unless you change your behavior.

How to do it? It’s almost unrealistic to suddenly change from doing nothing to spending 3 hours focusing on something. The more effective way is to use 20-minute intervals and switch between tasks if you’d like while taking breaks in between. You can start with aiming for writing a post for 20 minutes then relaxing for a bit and then picking up a book for 20 minutes, or planning meals, doing some skincare regime, etc. Actually, once you get a head start, the rest is much easier. You could be easily writing for 40 minutes before you know it. 

The essence of this approach to me is to start with less ambition as overly high expectation is usually a big obstacle to getting started and a big contributor to procrastination.

Lastly, having an app that can record your time spent on each activity on a daily basis is very helpful in becoming aware of how you spend your time and staying motivated in engaging in more productive activities.


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