Morgan Giddings header image

Morgan Giddings

≡ Menu

Create or Die

A Manifesto For Fearless
Creators Everywhere

This book reveals just why creativity is the backbone of happiness and success, regardless of your occupation. It discusses the many adversaries to creativity that we are surrounded by and shows how to overcome them to create a powerful life by your own design.

Learn More »

Fun Killers are Productivity Killers, Part I


Why do you want to be more “productive?” Why are there so many productivity books, products, courses, and gurus?

If you examine this question, productivity isn’t quite what it seems. Lots of people (moi included) have fallen into the trap of seeking productivity for the sheer sake of “being more productive because that’s what we’re supposed to do.”

But why?

If you think about it, this is programming we carry around that is a) bogus and b) fun-killing. If you think about the source of this programming, we can go back to the factories of the Industrial era, with bosses lording over “production” to assure that it didn’t lag.

Notice the similarity between the word “production” and “productivity?” Yeah.

You are a tool

The implication is that you are a tool for cranking out stuff (otherwise known as a “robot”). The more stuff a robot cranks out, the better the robot! The more we reward the robot. Yay! Good Robot!

Um, no thanks. Not the way I want to live my life. And hopefully not the way you want to live yours. Being someone’s pet robot is not in my life plan.

I can anticipate the objection now (hey, I’ve done enough grant writing that I am pretty good at figuring out what those objections might be, in advance).

Your objection may be something like this:

  • If I produce more, I will earn more money and/or other rewards (like promotions or Nobel prizes).
  • If I earn more money and/or other rewards, I will be happier
  • Therefore, producing more means more happiness!

Yes, I talk to a LOT of people who have this kind of implicit (and almost always unexamined) belief system.

It’s not helping you…

Let me count the ways in which this belief system does not serve you.

1) Producing more does not lead to more money or other rewards. It is NEVER about the quantity, unless you’re on an assembly line or a farm. If you are doing anything even mildly creative in your work, it is about the QUALITY and NEWNESS of what you do, way more than quantity!

(Imagine if your humble author went on a robot-like “productivity” binge and wrote 3 blog posts per day of blah blah blah blah blah… where would that get her? Um… nowhere! Or, perhaps having a Comp Sci degree, she could use an artificial intelligence program to auto-generate lots of blog posts? um…. blech)

2) More money and/or other rewards do not equal more happiness. Quite often, the opposite occurs. People often have this ego that thinks these things will make it feel satisfied, but the ego is NEVER satisfied.

For example, I had a client who recently had few HUGE wins in her life. A few days after the ego-led euphoria of those wins wore off, it was “back to normal” – but worse.

It was “worse” because the big wins put additional pressure on her to “live up to” the wins and to “not screw it up.” So here she was, less than a week after some things that would create envy among many other people – feeling more doubt and concern than ever. (Fortunately, we worked through that and she’s back on track!)

Those wins, like money and stuff, never produce lasting joy or satisfaction. So why is it that we often spend much of our lives striving for them?

Ego programming. The ego is not by itself “bad” (and you’re not going to get rid of it in this life anyway). However, through various experiences with various people in our lives, we pick up ego programming that tells us that seeking fame or fortune or stability or security is for our highest good. And we carry that programming through life, unexamined, it shaping most of our actions and experiences without us even knowing it.

And so we end up pursuing goals that are shallow, ego-led goals, never finding the long-lasting joy or satisfaction that is our birthright as a human.

For many of my readers, you may be more in the category of “seeking security” or “seeking stability” rather than “fame and fortune.” You may even have some judgement relative to those people who seek fame and fortune, thinking of them as ego-driven, while thinking of yourself as not so ego-driven.

I encourage you to think about that for a moment. What generates the need for security or stability for many people? Fear – i.e. not wanting insecurity, fear of the unknown, fear of the future, fear of what will happen, fear of things not going well, etc.

Where does fear come from? Ego programming! Fear is only and always about ego. It is just a different form of ego programming. Yet it can take over your life in an insidious manner that’s far less than the obvious ego programming that leads to seeking fame and fortune.

We live in an ego led world, and I am an ego girl…

Okay, the line from the song by Madonna didn’t fit this expression so well, but I will proceed nonetheless….

We live in a very ego-led world. It is rare to encounter someone who has seriously undertaken a path of attempting to live at a deeper level, one that strives to constantly go deeper than the ego-programming and to live from the CORE. That means living in the NOW, enjoying each moment, being in the flow, and creating!

So, we tore apart the notion that “producing more will produce more happiness.” It’s bogus.

I don’t think that anyone truly wants to “be productive.” (Have you EVER met a small child who says “I want to be PRODUCTIVE today?” I didn’t think so.)

No, I think that people want to have harmony, adventure, joy, fun, excitement, intrigue, love, connection and similar feelings/experiences. And we need to get rid of the notion that more productivity somehow leads directly to more of those things.

It often leads to exactly the opposite – especially in our over-jacked, hyped up, always-on society. We often get sucked into “being productive” for the sake of “being productive” and then these other things become ever more elusive. That’s bogus.

So, in part II of the article, we’re going to do a logical trick that is going to blow your mind (or at least tweak it a tiny bit) – to redefine the relationship of productivity to your fun and to your life.

Stay tuned……

Your Problem Is Not What You Think It Is

Let’s say that by some weird coincidence in life, you have a problem that you have to actually deal with and can't just sweep under the rug. (Hey, most of us never have problems, do we?) It could be that there’s not enough money flowing. It could be that you’re a researcher who is struggling with… read more →

When did the feminine become BAD and WRONG?

When did the feminine become BAD and WRONG?? Connection. Listening. Healing. Creativity. Intuition. Tuning into feelings. These are some of the strongest feminine traits - yet where are they taught in our schools or upbringings? They're NOT… they are instead swept under the rug - and for many people - once under the rug, run… read more →

How does an iPhone 6 get lost in the snow and returned to its owner?!

It's a good question. Because, when it was back in my hands two hours after being lost, several people remarked "that's LUCKY". I know others who've lost phones when out skiing, never to find them again. I ski mostly in the trees and powder, so with a phone flying out of my pocket sometime in… read more →

Is your life ruled by “Lizard Brain?”

Chances are, it is. If you have difficulty making tough decisions... If you have far too much on your plate and not enough time for it all... If you suffer from procrastination or perfectionism... If you like to wait until money is assured BEFORE you invest in yourself.... If you regularly listen to the news… read more →

1.2 Million Women-owned Businesses Likely To Fail This Year From Guilt and Overwhelm

Facebook Chief Operations Officer Sheryl Sandberg Says: 100% Of Women Caught in Guilt Chasm Between Business and Family. Women make up 60% of college graduates, but only 41% of the workforce. ( Women are dropping out… by the millions. Why? Guilt and Overwhelm. Am I Abandoning My Family? According to recent statistics, in a home… read more →


It's time I come clean, put my BS aside and take responsibility for my truest, most raw BEING. Why? To serve & honour myself…YES! And just as important, to lead by example. To inspire & facilitate your most extraordinary evolution through my deeds NOT JUST THROUGH MY WORDS. And to bestow on you, what you… read more →

What Lies in Stone….

When speaking of his historically famous Statue of David, Michelangelo said this, "Every block of stone has a statue inside it and it is the task of the sculptor to discover it." He made similar comments throughout his lifetime about his artistic abilities and how he did not carve stone to look like figures, he… read more →

Victimhood vs Vulnerability

Being authentic in vulnerability vs. the hidden agenda of victimhood.… read more →

The Sniffles or a Lesson?

Getting sick can teach us something? Heck yeah!… read more →

“Panic Culture” and Ebola

Airborne I had the “pleasure” - if you can call it that - of traveling through one of America’s busiest airports today. On my way through, there were headlines and TV’s blaring: “EBOLA!!!”  Scare. Fear. Worry. Doubt. “It could strike you at any time, so be AWARE, be CAREFUL, be SAFE.” Now, look. I have… read more →

Real Time Analytics