What a great premise for a blog post. A couple of weeks ago I had one of the most unproductive weeks I had in a very long time.
I did not have access to my espresso machine and decided to take a break from coffee. Having my productivity back after making the first coffee with my old Aeropress again tought me something valuable:
Coffee Making Habbit
About two years ago, my trigger for making coffee was feeling unproductive. When I got stuck with a programming problem, I would get up from my desk, walk up a floor to the kitchen, make some coffee and bring that back down again.
There is a curiuous thing about programming: Sometimes, taking just a bit of distance allows your subconscious to figure out the problem or come up with a next step all on it’s own. You unblock yourself passively.
Trained Productivity Spark
This “coming up with a solution” spark leads to a surge of motivation or inspiration that allows sitting back down and regain productivity.
This happened often enough over the past two years while making coffee, that making coffee is now a trigger for moving into a productive mental state, even if there was no spark.
Acording to “The Power of Habbit” by Charles Duhigg, the habbit loop becomes:
Feeling Stuck (Trigger/Cue) => Make Coffee (Routine) => Coffee/Spark/Feeling of Being Productive (Reward)
Summarizing, I was lucky to accidentally develop a habbit that takes me out of unproductive states, triggerd by the unproductive state.
There will be times where I don’t have access to coffee and it would be a shame if that meant that I cannot be productive.
Today, I read a couple of chapters of Tim Ferriss’ “Tribe of Mentors” and I noticed I got a similar spark of inspiration out of it that got me into a mentally productive state.
I will make it a habbit to turn to reading whenever I feel stuck and see if I can this time intentionally develop it to help me as making coffee does.