The Secret of Gamifying Your Productivity

podcast Mar 01, 2019

Gamifying your productivity. This is one of my biggest secrets to increasing your productivity. 

Here’s the premise.

Are you ready for this?

You make a game out of productivity.

It really is that simple.

Who doesn’t like playing games?

You are competing with yourself.

How about an example?

Let’s say you’re always late.

Here's how you'd gamify showing up on time:

  • do whatever you have to in order to show up on time or a little early (even better!) once!
  • that's #1.
  • show up on time or early again.
  • that's #2.
  • keep going.
  • for every time you show up on time or early, you give yourself another point.
  • at some point, your streak will be at a number where you won't want to start over at 1 again.

Remember: you're competing against yourself.

Yep, there's an app for that!

To help you keep track of your new habits, consider getting an app. I like Streaks (iOS and Mac only). Another popular app is Way of Life (available on iOS and Android).

Create a task (Streaks) or a Journal (Way of Life) and tell the app you were on time (or early!) today. It will keep track for you.

But you don’t have to use an app. You can use a whiteboard, chalkboard (do they still have those…? I may be dating myself with that reference), a notebook, or whatever!

Keep showing up on time (or early!) and watch the number go from 1 to 2 to 5 to 10 etc.

The higher the number, the likelihood you will make a habit of this.

The list is endless...

You could gamify so many things. Here are 25 things to get you started:

  1. Reading
  2. Working out
  3. Entering notes into your CRM
  4. Meditating
  5. Making X sales calls a day
  6. Practicing a new language
  7. Floss your teeth
  8. Do your homework
  9. Walk the dog (your pooch wants this!)
  10. Take a photo
  11. Drinking water
  12. No soda
  13. No alcohol
  14. Pushups
  15. Too much coffee
  16. Eating fast food
  17. Late-night snacking
  18. No sweets
  19. Praying
  20. Good posture
  21. Inbox zero
  22. Too much television
  23. Study
  24. Smoking
  25. Playing with your kids

The list goes on.

The goal of gamifying is to developing new habits.

What I gamify:

  • Waking up at 5 AM (streak start: February 4, 2020)
  • Running 1 mile a day (streak start: August 29, 2017)
  • Closing the Activity Rings on my Apple Watch (streak start: September 14, 2018)
  • Learning French on Duolingo (streak start: April 4, 2020)
  • Drinking water every day (streak start: September 14, 2019)
  • Being vegetarian (streak start: November 24, 2019)

Now, I'm not saying that I've kept all of these streaks. Most, yes. But not all.

For example, I started my 5 AM streak on February 4th but I had a family emergency on February 17th and had to start over at 1 on the 18th. Same with being vegetarian. I ate meat on Thanksgiving 2019, Christmas 2019, and on December 27, 2019...but not since then.

This is a very powerful way to create new habits. I promise you.

Your turn

How do you gamify your productivity? Share in the comments.

If you don't and are intrigued, leave your questions in the comments and let me help you.

Click here to take the productivity quiz and see how productive you really are.

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