Moving beyond Productivity and Presence to be more Deliberate

Last week, we discussed moving beyond productivity to be more present. This week, we’ll show you how to move even beyond presence, to be more deliberate:


Instead of judging my days by either how productive or present I’ve been, I’ve started thinking in terms of something else: how deliberate I’ve been. By “deliberateness,” I mean feeling like I’m making very conscious decisions about how I spend my time.

I think that focusing on being deliberate actually helps resolve a lot of the tension between presence and productivity. Being deliberate about how we spend our time is essential for being productive in the meaningful sense: for effectively working towards things that are important to you.

But being deliberate doesn’t mean “getting things done” for the sake of it, or always being goal-focused. Sometimes being deliberate means consciously choosing to simply experience life without worrying about whether you’re “getting anywhere.” What does this mean doing in practice? A few things I’ve found particularly helpful for using my time deliberately:

  1. Making plans

A relatively simple thing that worked wonders for my productivity was sitting down at the beginning of each day, writing a list of tasks I wanted to achieve, and then actually planning at what time I was going to do each of those things.

  1. Asking the right questions when choosing how to spend your time

When I look back on the past hour, what would make me feel good about how I’ve spent it?

What would the very best version of myself do right now?

  1. Having regularly scheduled “check-in” points during the day

I use these check-in points to step back and ask: How am I feeling? Am I really motivated and engaged in what I’m doing, or am I getting distracted? Am I using my time and focus in the ways I’d like to be?


For a recap on looking beyond just being productive to also being present and deliberate you can visit

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