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  • Transcriber: TED Translators admin

  • A few years ago, my obsession with productivity

  • got so bad that I suffered an episode of burnout

  • that scared the hell out of me.

  • I'm talking insomnia, weight gain, hair loss -- the works.

  • I was so overworked that my brain

  • literally couldn't come up with another idea.

  • That indicated to me that my identity was linked with this idea of productivity.

  • [The Way We Work]

  • Do you feel guilty if you haven't been productive enough during the day?

  • Do you spend hours reading productivity hacks,

  • trying new frameworks and testing new apps

  • to get even more done?

  • I've tried them all -- task apps, calendar apps,

  • time-management apps,

  • things that are meant to manage your day.

  • We've been so obsessed with doing more

  • that we've missed the most important thing.

  • Many of these tools aren't helping.

  • They're making things worse.

  • OK, let's talk about productivity for a second.

  • Historically, productivity as we know it today

  • was used during the industrial revolution.

  • It was a system that measured performance based on consistent output.

  • You clocked into your shift

  • and were responsible for creating X number of widgets

  • on the assembly line.

  • At the end of the day, it was pretty easy to see

  • who worked hard and who hadn't.

  • When we shifted to a knowledge economy,

  • people suddenly had tasks that were much more abstract,

  • things like writing, problem-solving or strategizing,

  • tasks that weren't easy to measure.

  • Companies struggled to figure out

  • how to tell who was working and who wasn't,

  • so they just adopted the old systems as best as they could,

  • leading to things like the dreaded time sheet

  • where everyone is under pressure

  • to justify how they spend every second of their day.

  • There's just one problem.

  • These systems don't make a lot of sense for creative work.

  • We still think of productivity as an endurance sport.

  • You try to churn out as many blog posts

  • or we cram our day full of meetings.

  • But this model of constant output isn't conducive to creative thought.

  • Today, knowledge workers are facing a big challenge.

  • We're expected to be constantly productive and creative

  • in equal measure.

  • But it's actually almost impossible

  • for our brains to continuously generate new ideas

  • with no rest.

  • In fact, downtime is a necessity for our brain

  • to recover and to operate properly.

  • Consider that according to a team of researchers

  • from the University of Southern California,

  • letting our minds wander is an essential mental state

  • that helps us develop our identity,

  • process social interactions,

  • and it even influences our internal moral compass.

  • Our need for a break flies in the face of our cultural narrative about hustling,

  • in other words, the stories that we as a society

  • tell each other about what success looks like

  • and what it takes to get there.

  • Stories like the American Dream,

  • which is one of our most deeply rooted beliefs.

  • This tells us that if we work hard, we'll be successful.

  • But there's a flip side.

  • If you aren't successful,

  • it must mean that you're not working hard enough.

  • And if you don't think you're doing enough,

  • of course you're going to stay late, pull all-nighters

  • and push yourself hard even when you know better.

  • Productivity has wrapped itself up in our self-worth,

  • so that it's almost impossible for us to allow ourselves

  • to stop working.

  • The average US employee only takes half of their allocated paid vacation leave,

  • further proving that even if we have the option

  • to take a break, we don't.

  • To be clear, I don't think that productivity

  • or trying to improve our performance is bad.

  • I'm just saying that the current models we're using to measure our creative work

  • don't make sense.

  • We need systems that work with our creativity

  • and not against it.

  • [SO HOW DO WE FIX IT?]

  • There is no quick fix for this problem.

  • And I know, I know, that sucks.

  • No one loves a good framework or a good acronym

  • better than me.

  • But the truth is everyone has their own narratives

  • that they have to uncover.

  • It wasn't until I started digging around my own beliefs around work

  • that I began to unravel the root of my own work story,

  • finally being able to let go of destructive behaviors

  • and make positive, long-lasting changes.

  • And the only way to do that

  • is by asking yourself some hard questions.

  • Does being busy make you feel valuable?

  • Who do you hold up as an example of success?

  • Where did your ideas of work ethic come from?

  • How much of who you are is linked to what you do?

  • Your creativity, it has its own rhythms.

  • Our energy fluctuates daily, weekly, even seasonally.

  • I know that I'm always more energetic at the beginning of the week

  • than at the end,

  • so I front-load my workweek to account for that fact.

  • As a proud night owl, I free up my afternoons and evenings

  • for creative work.

  • And I know I'll get more writing done

  • in the cozy winter months than during the summer.

  • And that's the secret.

  • Dismantling myths, challenging your old views,

  • identifying your narratives --

  • this is the real work that we need to be doing.

  • We aren't machines,

  • and I think it's time that we stopped working like one.

Transcriber: TED Translators admin

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燃え尽きが私たちをどのように創造的にしているのか|TEDシリーズ「The Way We Work」のご紹介 (How burnout makes us less creative | The Way We Work, a TED series)

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    林宜悉 に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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