What does it mean to be productive? The word often makes us think of things like the fast paced hustle and grind. As a society we have a skewed idea of what productivity looks like, which has led many people to burnout, anxiousness or depression.
There are two major energetic influences behind ‘productivity’: force and flow.
This ‘force-flow’ relationship is like the ebb and flow of the sea. Neither is better than the other, and both are necessary for Mother Nature to support life. This energy exchange is the current that keeps life afloat. Sometimes we are with the tide, other times we work against it.
The sea ebbs and flows naturally, as humans often we are caught up in the tide, and can find ourselves working against rather than with current circumstances.
We often use force, through hard work, to produce physical results in our life. And when we hear “go with the flow” we suspiciously picture a free spirited hippie floating through life in a daze. ‘Flow’ is usually viewed as counterproductive, but this isn’t exactly the truth.
Force and flow are in relationship with each other, and it is this synergy that yields results.
Productivity is subjective between person, place and moment. The seasons and cycles within our lives need space for this ‘ebb and flow’ relationship. Just as we sleep and wake, both force and flow are equally important to the process.
The most important thing is to simply ‘be’; to listen to our intuition, and do what feels right moment by moment, with each changing tide.
Here is a list of things that you can do in your spare time to help you be productive, whatever that may look like to you.
- Learn a breathing exercise – Sitali breath, Lion’s breath and Breath of Fire are all techniques that many people find beneficial
- Learn to bellydance
- Flow – Guided Yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi, Qi Gong or Kung Fu – Yin yoga is great before bed
- Practice mobility – There are plenty of free resources available to help teach you how to strengthen your joints and muscles. Try a quick Google or YouTube search.
- Experiment with your style – Try shaking up your wardrobe or hairstyle.
- Open your taste palette – Have you ever heard of an Indonesian Jamu? Or a Costa Rican Gallo Pinto? Chances are that you have ingredients laying around your house that could spice up your palette and enhance your health.
Mental, Emotional and Spiritual
- Learn a new language – studies show a 5 year delay in Alzheimers for people who can speak more than one language
- Watch a TED Talk
- Listen to a podcast
- Write letters to your loved ones
- Make a vision board
- Tune into a guided meditation – New to meditation? Try searching “mindfulness, visualisation or sound bath”.
- Play a childhood board/video game
- Learn to sing or play an instrument
- Write a short story
- Research what’s happening in your community – Chances are, recreation and leisure activities are happening in your neighbourhood. A little research could connect you with like-minded people who share the same interests or goals. Stuck indoors? Social media is your online neighbourhood!
- Start a video log that you can watch in the future – Daily, weekly, monthly or annually, a video is a beautiful way to collect memories of yourself and your loved ones.
- Play the wikipedia game – Pick two completely irrelevant words. Try and get from “A” to “B” by only clicking links within the articles. Fewest clicks win.
Positivity & Self Care
- Avoid your phone for 30 minutes – If stepping away from your phone is difficult for you, that’s a sign that you should be disconnecting more often. To disconnect is to retreat; to retreat is to reconnect.
- Detox your social media – Cleanse your newsfeeds by unfollowing people who don’t add value to your life.
- DIY body scrub, face cleanser, toner and moisturiser
- DIY conditioning hair/beard mask
- Soak your feet in warm water and sea salt
- Start a virtual movie night or book club
- Positive affirmation reminders – Set notifications to go off spontaneously that remind you to relax, rehydrate and smile. But most importantly, remind yourself how blessed you are.
Things to research
(In no particular order)
- Chinese Medicine
- Bloodline and Family History
- Ancestral History
- Ancient Egyptian Mythology
- Greek Mythology
- Norse Mythology
- Celtic Mythology
- Myers-Briggs Personality Test
- Ancient Worlds and Lost Civilisations
- Dark Matter
- Zen Koans
- Stoic Philosophy
- Growth Mindset
You are worthy.