Issue #389

Sent to members on July 18, 2022

Motivation After An Unproductive Day

Last week’s issue about work-at-home strategies for productivity warranted a few responses from readers where they told me they have been dealing with a bit of a low-productivity time and that my article helped inspire them.

And first off, I’m glad it helped. But, it also reminded me of something.


No matter what kind of stuff we do to get productive and hopefully get into some kind of groove for getting things done, all of us – and I mean everybody – falls off the wagon sometimes.

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We’re not machines.

We’re human beings. And our energy level comes and goes. Mood changes. And things happen that take us off our game.

So, some days, we’re cookin’ on all cylinders. And sometimes, we have an “off” day where not much happens.

You know, the days when your “work” consisted of an unhealthy amount of social media distraction until you look at the clock and wonder what the hell just happened.

It happens. Don’t beat yourself up over it.

Trust me, I’ve had those days, too. Hell, even felt it a bit last week.

The “trick” (if you want to call it that) is to come up with some habits – or systems – that help give you more productive days than non-productive days.

And when you have a day where you didn’t get much done, you stop and look at that as a system breakdown. And you ask WHY. Where was the constraint?

Lot of times, it boils down to lack of self-discipline. But, least for me, usually even THAT is a symptom. For me, that’s often a symptom of not being crystal clear on exactly what my goal is for that moment. So, I stop faking work and go into planning mode so I know what the hell I’m supposed to be doing.

Lack of direction is one heck of a constraint.

Here’s a few other things I do with my own schedule to try to keep myself truckin’ on things…

  • I schedule appointments with myself on my calendar so I know what I’m doing throughout the day. For instance, right as I am writing these very words, my calendar says “Work on EDGE” between 9:15-10:15. So, that’s what I’m going. I have a couple errands to run at 10:15, then picking up my daughter at 12… and so on. Point is, I know what I will be doing when. And even if I had a day where I didn’t needs to go anywhere, I will schedule appointments for myself.
  • During those appointment windows, I use my timer on my desktop or phone to tick down until the end of that time window. When it is time to move on, I move on.
  • I plan out my day like that in the morning, pretty early.
  • I plan out, too, things OTHER than office work. We all need balance. We all need variety. For me, having a house that still has some remodeling projects going on helps me get my hands dirty as a break from being in the office. And yes, I schedule that, too.

The big thing is….

Be INTENTIONAL about where your time goes.

And how it is spent.

For me, I find that using the calendar to schedule out my day works well.

You can’t manage your weight if you don’t jump on the scale and measure. And I look at time the same way. You can’t manage your time if you don’t keep yourself accountable for how it is spent.

One other point to share…

The ONE point in time you have FULL control over is right now. Present time.

And every moment that is to come is ultimately the result of decisions you make NOW.

The past? Well, the past is the past. Those moments are gone. And not only that, they have no bearing on the present or the future unless you give those past decisions any power now. You can change your mind, act completely differently, and do anything. Right now. All you have to do is decide.

So, it doesn’t matter if you’ve had unproductive days.

All that matters is what you do right now.

Never dwell on the past. No regret yesterday. Never waste your time lamenting days gone by. They literally don’t matter anymore. That was then.

Life is in you today.

And you make your own tomorrows.

Now, let’s get after it relentlessly.

Tech Talk

A few months ago, the company behind the Elementor page builder came out with their own hosted service called Elementor Cloud. I thought it was interesting as a business move for them because clearly they are trying to build a new recurring revenue stream as a SAAS busienss. Well…

Learndash has just done it, too, with the announcement of Learndash Cloud. $29/month you can run a full course business powered by Learndash (obviously). In the end, seems like they’re just giving you WordPress hosting with things pre-installed and ready to rock. Seeing as LiquidWeb recently acquired Learndash, this move makes sense for them.

In other launch news, Easy Digital Downloads just came out with version 3.0. EDD 3 has been completely re-built to make it much more scalable than previous versions. They’ve also drastically enhanced the reporting functionality, added several interface enhancements to make it easier to manage orders and products. Overall, this looks like a solid upgrade. Personally, I prefer the power and flexibility of WooCommerce, but EDD is a great platform and easier to use in many ways.

This last week, you might have noticed an auto-upgrade of WordPress to 6.0.1 (depending on your host). This version has 13 bug fixes in Core and 18 bug fixes for the block editor. In other words, it is a maintenance release and no big new features were shipped. The next major WordPress release 6.1 is currently scheduled for October.

Cloudways and Astra have partnered up to provide Astra Pro free for a year to Cloudways customers. If you’re not familiar, Astra Pro is a robust theme option for WordPress built around the block editor and prodides pretty solid performance. Obviously, site speed is one of the promises of Cloudways hosting, so this partnership makes perfect sense. One year of Astra Pro is a $59 value. After the first year, you can optionally continue.

CheckoutWC has an article for WooCommerce store owners regarding sales taxes for 2022. Even if you don’t use WooCommerce, you may find this useful as it might answer some questions about sales tax collection and if it applies to you.

And lastly, Elementor has released 3.7 to Beta. Some of the enhancements include user-selected language in the editor, custom icons for alerts, and a few other gizmos.

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