Toxic Productivity- What Is It, and How Can You Deal With It?


Listen to “Toxic Productivity- What Is It, and How Can You Deal With It?”.

“Toxic Productivity Culture: A cultural trend defined as an obsession, or addiction, to being productive; results in one’s self-worth being measured by levels of productivity.”

While productivity is typically seen as something positive, it becomes toxic when it is unbalanced and harms our sense of self. Toxic productivity leaves us feeling like we are never enough. 

An example of Toxic Productivity is being productive to the point where physical health, mental health, relationships, sleep quality, and overall well-being are impacted.

One of the most common reasons we become addicted to being productive is because we feel worthless or useless if we’re not constantly trying to better ourselves. So often, the reason we begin this tireless trek for validation, purpose, or value is that, deep down, we aren’t happy with ourselves.

Essentially, we are led to believe that in order to be valuable, we need to be seen to be busy. 

Downtime and relaxation have become increasingly synonymous with procrastination. As a result, we do not allow ourselves the space to rest, reflect, enjoy life and be ourselves.

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The toxicity around productivity often comes from what we think we should be doing instead of what we want to do or need to do for our own good.

Furthermore, treating yourself, your work, your lifestyle like a never-ending self–improvement project is toxic. 

Striving for an unattainable standard leads to burnout, self–hatred, and even eating disorders. We shouldn’t be expected to work around–the–clock to “better” ourselves. 

If you have a toxic relationship with productivity, you might struggle to be alone with yourself any time you’re not busy working. Then, when you finally take a break or let yourself have a day off, you might feel guilty. 

You might notice feelings of lower self-worth when you aren’t producing, creating, or working in some way or be distracted by comparing yourself to others that you see as more productive than you.

To counteract this unhealthy behaviour, develop more self-love and compassion, be honest with yourself and humble about where you came from. With self-love, you’ll find mentally healthier motives for improving your life.

Buddha’s Rules for Happiness

We rarely celebrate when people are present, well-rested, or set and meet reasonable goals. However, we are human, and we will have some days where we achieve less than we do on other days, but that shouldn’t take away from who we are and our value as individuals.

Things will never be perfect, but you can build the type of life where you’re pleased with what you’ve been able to do with the little amount of time you have, whilst also having time and energy to enjoy life.