Self-control is over-hyped, according to Kentaro Fujita, a psychologist who studies self-control at Ohio State University.
Research suggests that the popular idea of self-control as the ability to resist temptation with willpower is fundamentally flawed.
“Our prototypical model of self-control is angel on one side and devil on the other, and they battle it out. We tend to think of people with strong willpower as people who are able to fight this battle effectively. Actually, the people who are really good at self-control never have these battles in the first place.” – Kentaro Fujita, psychologist at Ohio State University
How does this tie in with productivity? If you ask anyone what is the biggest challenge they face in trying to be productive, a likely response will involve something about a “lack of willpower”, or perhaps a difficulty staying focused.
These kinds of responses represent the popular understanding of what it means to exercise self-control.
The most productive people don’t necessarily have the best self-control, they just know how to work smart.
They’ve also most likely built up a lot of good work habits for saving time and effort, allowing them to alleviate some of the stress or discomfort that is one of the root causes of unproductivity.
In this article, I’ll outline 42 productivity hacks to help you understand how to work smarter, improve the quality of your work life, and build habits that will save you time, energy, and mental strain in the long-term.
Here’s the complete list of productivity hacks: