I hate productivity hacks. There, I said it.
Now, don’t get me wrong — I spent my fair share of adult life reading 100s of articles and books about productivity. About how I can hack my day to be the most successful version of myself and how if I wake up at 5, I will be unstoppable at anything in life. In my search for the perfect hack for me, I read blogs, reached out to the so-called “productivity gurus” of the world, I engaged in conversations online discussing what worked for me and what didn’t. I wanted to know it all. I wanted to know how I could do 8hrs worth of work in 2hrs.
All that worked for me for a while until in 2019 I took up a new role as a mother. Two painful days of labor brought me the most beautiful gift of my life — my son. While I was high on hormones, still at the hospital, I convinced myself that nothing is going to change. I will still be the same person I was before and this little angle will just make my perfect life even better. I told myself I will go back to work in 3 months and excel in my career.
well, at least part of that did turn out to be true. My son did end up making my life even better than before and still continues to do it Every. Single. Second. of each and every day. The going back to work and excelling at my career part — not so much.
After the first month at home, I realized I don’t want to go back to work and would rather stay home and raise my kid. Fast forward to the present day. He’s now 15 months old and I feel like I’m ready to go back to work. But looking for a job is a full-time job in itself and that, while taking care of a toddler at home with ZERO personal space, is impossible.
Enter productivity hacks! I spent hours and hours reading about how I can maximize my time in order to get the most done. How I should indeed get up at 5 am and work on my goals and aspirations. How I should block undisturbed time for my passion projects. How I should listen to podcasts, read 43807408 books in a year, journal and meditate every day… and on and on…
Not even a single article talked about how impossible it is to do all of this if you have a baby at home.
No, I can’t get up at 5 am because I was up with my toddler 4 times during the night and I am exhausted. No, I cannot block undisturbed time for my passion projects because babies don’t work like that. They need food, milk, snack, diaper changes, or just hugs approximately every 1.5 mins. No, I cannot listen to podcasts when 5 of the 50 toys are singing something or the other all at the same time. No, I cannot read a book because then he would want to ‘read’ the exact same book and after a few mins it will end up in scraps of paper. No, I absolutely cannot meditate every day because the number 1 requirement for meditation is to sit in a quiet place. That is literally impossible in my current life situation. So no… I don’t want your productivity hacks, thanks but no thanks.
Even now, every once in a while when I am low on energy and procrastinating about not being productive, I go down the “let me read some productivity-related articles so I can be motivated to do more” rabbit hole. And within the first few minutes, I remind myself why I stopped looking for them in the first place.
So to my fellow mamas I say — you do you, girl! Only you can figure out what works best for you. Don’t listen to anyone who tells you that you can’t achieve anything if you are not waking up at 5 am. You ARE waking up at 5 am- to feed your kid. And when you look down at that little thing in your arms, make sure to remind yourself that THAT is one of the biggest achievements of your life — you made a life.
Previously published on Medium.com.
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