There's a mindset that is shared a lot throughout the world. I especially see it in my area (NYC/NJ Metro). That mindset is if you work a lot and put in a ton of hours, you'll be successful.
This is absolutely the furthest thing from the truth.
Working 12-14 hours per day, never taking time off, always checking your phone, and always being available leads to (and this is scientifically proven):
- Not enjoying your life
- Not being able to give 100% to what you're doing
Burnout is Real
I read something once that went something along the lines of if you love what you do, you won't burnout.
This is false.
If you watch too much Netflix, you'll burn out. If you like playing video games and you play too much, you'll burn out. If you love going on vacation and vacation six months out of the year, you'll get burnt out.
Burnout doesn't just come from work. It comes from all aspects of our lives.
Things that we do and love to do have to come in increments. This is especially important for work.
No More Burnout
Do you hate the feeling of being burnt out? Of feeling like your day is just full of busy work, but realistically you don't feel like you accomplished anything?
Have you ever felt like you had to work more because you weren't able to get all of your work done? We all have and I'll tell you why, because you aren't focused.
You may say something along the lines of No way Mike, I'm definitely focused!
If that's the case, let me ask you this:
- Are you checking your phone while working?
- Are you looking at social media?
- Are you watching TV while working?
- Do you have multiple tabs open that have nothing to do with the task at hand?
- Is Slack open or another messaging app?
If any of those are a yes, then you're not focused.
There's a concept and a book I absolutely love and live by called Deep Work, which is a book all about how to get rid of distractions and why it's important.
To put things into perspective, since I started practicing Deep Work, I can get more done in 4 hours vs what I used to get done in 8-10 hours.
Why? Because I focus, and guess what? You absolutely can do the same thing!
Deep Work is something that's rapidly going away. We all have an incredible amount of distractions. More-so than most likely any other time in history. Between social media, cell phones, and most organizations (which is absolutely awful), expecting you to be available 24/7 on Slack, Deep Work is slowly becoming obsolete.
But guess what?
If you can practice it, you'll be ahead of anyone else around you. Once you practice it and understand it, you can teach it to everyone else. I guarantee you you'll be more focused and productive.
I want you to try something. For an hour out of your day, do the following:
- Put your phone in another room or on airplane mode
- Don't check social media
- Don't check Slack or any other messaging service
- Don't have any other tabs open on your web browser unless it has to do with the task at hand
Then, see how much you get done vs when you're checking all of these distractions.
Let me know how it goes for you.