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Working Hard on the Right Things, Not Just Working

In Productivity by Christien Louviere0 Comments

“I’ve waited my entire life to be busy. Whenever I hear actors complain about being busy, I think, ‘shut up.’ Because you do, you wait to be successful or to be able to work.” – Steve Carell

There is a difference between working hard and working smart. The truth is working hard on the wrong things will not make one successful. The excuse of “being busy” is so played out that Melissa Cassera wants to stab herself in the eye when she hears it. She has nice eyes.

For some people, they are too preoccupied with working hard and doing things right. But they fail to look at if they are doing the right things. For instance, after a hard work all throughout the day, you may still ask if what you have done really made a difference. You may also be working tirelessly all day, but in the end, you still feel you haven’t accomplished anything.

Meanwhile, you can change such working attitude by considering these steps:

Proper Planning of Time

Lack of planning of time is very common in any workplace. With proper planning of our time, we can pay more attention on the important things and not just the urgent ones. By working first on those things that are most important to us, we are able to achieve results that have a high impact. To help you out, you may utilize a day planner or a task manager. We should also consider that we balance our time with work and family.

Be Strategic

Being strategic enables you to set goals, prioritize your workload and find out better ways to handle the tasks. Without any strategy in handling a particular task, you may get overwhelmed as a result.

Delegating a Task

If you do everything yourself, there’s a tendency that you will be burnt out of your job. The best thing you can do is to delegate that task to someone who is more capable to do that, especially if that task is not within your particular expertise. Assigning it to someone who will do the job better than you do is not only beneficial on your part. It also creates overall efficiency to the team.

Consider the Impact of a Task

It is also important that we consider the tasks that we are going to do regularly and then, try to weigh their impact. As much as possible, avoid those tasks that have little impact as it minimizes our ability. Find a way to delegate them especially if it is distracting you from accomplishing things that will have a greater impact.

Sometimes, It’s OK to Quit

There are times that quitting is a more favorable decision. We might still have that mindset that working hard prevents us from quitting a certain task. But we must consider if its outcome is what we had anticipated or what we would like it to be. Take the classic case of Steve Jobs when he quit creating the LISA computer. After that, he went on to create another computer called Mac, which we now know revolutionize the personal computing.  


By working hard on the right things, you are actually doing less while achieving more. There are a lot of benefits with this kind of working attitude such as better health, great work/life balance, better self-esteem, more money, exceptional productivity, and of course, satisfaction with work.


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