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How to Undo Productivity Guilt: Part 2
Relaxing is Productive
When people think of the word productivity, most agree it’s doing something to accomplish a means to an end. This can look like sending five resumes out or getting an hour of exercise into your day.
The feeling after doing something is what most people tend to care about. If you do something you perceive to be productive, it makes you feel accomplished and proud. If you don’t do something that day to be “productive”, guilt seeps in. You feel lazy and unproductive, and so do I.
It's important to remember that even when you think you aren’t doing anything, you still are whether you’re aware of it or not. If you’re laying down, you're recharging your body and mind. You have to relax first, so you can work later. Notice that when you feel too tired to work, your work isn’t as good as it would be when you're fully rested and mentally alert. Relaxing is a part of being productive.
If your mind wanders to something significant, which it usually does when we do “nothing”, you can write the idea down or make a mental note to add to your to-do list later. I find my best ideas come into my mind when I'm just relaxing by myself. The act of writing it down becomes productive. It makes me feel motivated and prepared to do it at another time when I’m ready.
Netanya is currently a Media and Public Interest student at Western University, and is doing a placement with mindyourmind. She is from the GTA and is passionate about all things mental health, storytelling and empowerment.
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