9 Productivity Myths That Are Holding You Back

There are tons of myths that people think are true about productivity. The problem is, if you really believe a myth it could be holding you back. 

For example, for years people often stated that girls weren’t as good at math as boys. Instead of being accurate, it was a dangerous myth that many girls embraced, and it made them less likely to take advanced math so that they can become engineers, scientists, and doctors. 

Thankfully, no one believes that myth anymore, and women are starting to grow in numbers in these careers because guess what – anyone who applies themselves can learn math. The same is true about every myth we’ll go over below. They’re not true, and the only harm that will be caused is if you believe them.

The Early Bird Catches the Worm

This implies that if you’re a night person, you cannot be successful. However, nothing could be further from the truth. Many night people or night owls are successful. In fact, there are studies that will point to both ideas: that early birds are more successful and that night owls are more successful. So, you know that neither is true. Whether you get up early or stay up late, as long as you are productive, you’ll experience success. 

If You Have a Clean Desk, You’re More Successful

You’ve heard that advice before. Clean off your desk every night before you go back to work in the morning to be more productive. However, this is not totally true. Many very messy people are extremely successful because they put more focus on their tasks and not on their surroundings. 

Systems Take Too Much Time to Set Up

You know that having systems in place will increase your productivity. But, it seems like it’s too hard to set up a system. The truth is, though, that the time it takes to set up a system is going to be saved and more throughout using the system. 

Working More Means That You’re Productive

For some people, working 18-hour days makes them feel as if they’re being productive. But remember what "productive" means. Productive means that you produce something. You create offers, you create products, you produce something that people can buy and pay money for. If what you’re doing isn’t that, you may be wasting your time being busy instead of productive. 

People Work Best When Under Pressure

Some people will claim to thrive under pressure. They’ll say they like deadlines. Now that may be true. Some people do thrive with a deadline, and are good at organizing their work days to be most productive and on time with a deadline. Others aren’t that good at doing it and will claim waiting until the last minute ensures a better result because they work well under pressure. But study after study has proved this wrong. You don’t need to be under pressure to produce amazing results; you just need a process that helps you do it. 

Automation Is Too Impersonal

Online marketing offers so many means to more automation that can help you become more productive that there is no way to go over them all. However, some business owners fear automation because they think it’s too impersonal. The fact is, for some things your audience will appreciate the automation - such as with transnational emails, for example. You’re only one person, so automation in the right places will increase your productivity exponentially. 

Outsourcing Costs Too Much

As you build your business, you will eventually get to a point where you need help. This is a growth situation that stumps up a lot of people. They assume that outsourcing costs too much for them to afford. However, the truth is, most of the time you can find someone who can do what you need to be done at a budget you can afford if you take the time saved and use it to earn more money. Anything you can outsource for fewer dollars than you make doing something else is worth it.

Work When Inspired 

One of the biggest myths seen is this one. So many people will claim they cannot work until they’re inspired. You hear about this mostly in creative careers like writing, painting, and other types of work like this. However, this is horrible advice for anyone to give anyway. The truth is, if you work during specific times set up for work, you’re going to be more productive and better at doing it than if you wait for inspiration. 

You Must Get Up and Get Dressed Daily to Be Successful

This seems like okay advice. However, countless people don’t follow this advice but are successful. Some of the jokes about writers, artists, programmers, and other creatives can be very true regarding getting into the flow and not going to bed early enough to get up. It’s far more important that you sleep when you’re tired and wake up when you’re rested than choosing arbitrary times to do it. 

Now that you’re more aware of these productivity myths, perhaps you can identify more erroneous myths that are holding you back. Once you find them, address them, and start improving, you’ll be able to turn every single myth on its head and be a big success.

About the Author Rich Thurman

Rich Thurman’s passion is helping small businesses realize their full potential. With twenty years of real world experience in both small and large business, Rich has worked for and with both global industry leaders and small-town family-run storefronts.