🌼The 13 Myths of Productivity, Debunked by Tim Ferriss
## And their corresponding truths to live a life of vitality, productivity, and happiness
The 4-Hour Workweek discusses the 13 mistakes of the New Rich, people who are new to the Ferrissian lifestyle that might fuck up a bit before they get it right.
In reality, these are mistakes that we can all make when thinking of optimizing our productivity.
Through this lens, **here are the 13 myths of productivity**, debunked by Tim Ferriss:
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## **1 — We should work for work’s sake**
We shouldn’t spend idle time twiddling our thumbs into oblivion.
But we shouldn’t fill our downtime with useless activities. Ferriss’ appeal is towards meaningful work, optimizing processes, and making sure that we spend our time how it is truly meant to be spent. Working just to work is a rut that we can easily fall into.
It’s up to us to break that cycle by being mindful of how we spend our time.
## **2 — Micromanaging and emailing to fill time is a good way to spend it**
So much of _The 4-Hour Workweek_ is dedicated to automating processes.
When we spend our time in the trenches of work that is otherwise automated (or should be automated), we’re not acting in line with the ideals of the _New Rich_. We automate processes like smaller administrative tasks and emails in order to free up our time to pursue greater things.
The greatest freedom we can allow ourselves in a working day is to take our hands off the wheel in whatever ways we can.
## **3 — Handling problems that can be outsourced is our sworn duty**
The power of the virtual assistant is real.
Having a reliable VA means that you don’t need to get stuck into problems that you’re paying people to fix. And if you haven’t yet worked out a way to outsource everyday processes, it would free up a lot of time to begin interviewing VA’s.
Being time-rich (as well as money-rich) starts with developing your lanes of automation.
## **4 — Helping outsourcers with the same problem more than once is our responsibility**
A good worker will remember the ways you handle unique problems and use that knowledge fluidly to solve similar problems in the future.
If you’re working with a VA on a problem that’s similar to a problem from a month ago, it’s time to update them on your expectations. It doesn’t make sense to keep going back to the same problem when they’ve already seen the solution. Help them by writing the steps toward that solution.
And having old VA’s train new VA’s makes sense too.
## **5 — Chasing customers when you have enough money to finance your nonfinancial pursuits**
I feel this is in line with our greed.
If we have enough to live how we wish to live, then why should we spend extra time and energy in pursuing more? I’m down with the ideas of conquest and expansion, but some level of success should be enough for contentment, at least for a while.
Once you’ve made it to a certain point in your career, hang out for a while before looking to move up the next rung.
## **6 — We should answer emails that will not result in a sale or that can be answered by an auto-responder**
At some point, you’re not that boots-on-the-ground business person.
When it is in your best interest, be human to your customers. When it is no longer worth your time, automate.
## **7 — It’s OK to work where you live, sleep, or should relax**
If you use your phone in bed, you may find it hard to sleep.
This is all about training your brain to work. Give it the right environment, free from mixed signals of sheets and pillows, and you’ll be set to work efficiently.
Even when space is limited, doing different activities in different parts of the room also helps make this in-brain distinction between work and relaxation.
## **8 — We don’t need to do an 80/20 analysis every two to four weeks of your business and personal life**
These audits are remarkably helpful.
Ask yourself what processes are working, cut the ones that aren’t working, and be on your merry way. Having a bird’s eye view of everything helps simplify the process. Failing to do this can lead to misery, simply put.
Be harsh when you make your cuts, this is all in your best interest.
## **9 — We must strive for endless perfection**
I used to fret about getting every word right in these articles.
Now, I’ve practiced being satisfied with what I call _70% completion_. Not that 70% of the words are written, just that any edits I’ve made after the fact have only taken 70% of my energy.
That last 30% can be draining, and my time (and yours) is often better used elsewhere.
## **10 — We need to blow small problems out of proportion as an excuse to work**
The American Dream is a salted wound.
We must rethink the way we participate in work. There is plenty of emptiness in menial and shallow work. Do not participate in it unless you can do so intentionally and meaningfully.
Plus, downtime and remembering to play makes for a better daily experience.
## **11 — We should make non-time sensitive issues urgent in order to work**
In line with #10.
To this, Ferriss says “If you cannot find meaning in your life, it is your responsibility as a human being to create it, whether that is fulfilling dreams or finding work that gives you purpose and self-worth — ideally a combination of both.”
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## **12 — Viewing one product or project as the end-all of your existence**
Ebb and flow, young grasshopper.
Situations are fluid and subject to change. As are your personal values, and perhaps purpose, should some awakening come your way. The word “pivot” comes to mind, and can be practiced by separating eggs and baskets and by trying new things.
Giving yourself this grace and flexibility will help you weather the storm of your next great idea.
## **13 — We can ignore the social rewards in life**
Life is meant to be shared.
Find people you can surround yourself with that aren’t in your world of work. People you can celebrate the little things with. People that uplift and inspire you.
> “Happiness shared in the form of friendships and love is happiness multiplied.” — Tim Ferris
Contributed by Justin Boyette
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