A Productivity Killer

productivity killer

Are you familiar with the term “productivity killer”?

Funny. When we were kids, most of us heard and maybe said, “Sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never hurt me.”

You remember that, right?

Then we grew up, and many of us learned that words do matter. Words have power. Words set the framework for how we feel, what we think, and how we act.

I realized how powerful even a single word can be when used in a negative manner when I recently heard myself say, “Wow. It’s only 9:30!”

Now those words don’t sound so bad, do they? No swearing. No name-calling. No inner-child berating the adult. But because of what those words meant at that time, they instantly killed my momentum. So much for being productive.

You spotted the word that stopped me, right? Yes. “ONLY.” As in “it’s really early n the day. I have plenty of time left  today to finish my to-do list, so I can play some more games on the computer. I can check Facebook and LinkedIn (and not leave for an hour). I can put in a load of laundry. I can write another blog post! I can . . . because I have all that time stretching out.”

It took me the better part of two hours to get back on track, mainly because I had given myself permission to goof off without realizing it. Now that I’m aware of it, I stop myself cold when I think or say it, especially in the morning when I haven’t accomplished much yet.

So creates your productivity killer? What words do you use that slow your momentum without your meaning to?

How do you deal with language issues that you create? What words help or hurt you?