On October 2021, I had the pleasure of interviewing Brooke Smith, an intuitive productivity coach and mindfulness expert.
We talked about how to get the most out of our time to be the most productive we can. Fortunately, she shared with me her powerful secret on practicing mindfulness to increase your productivity. In this interview, she will help you identify the cause of your productivity problems in order to better manage your time.
If you feel you don’t have the time to watch the video, you can simply read it down below!
Presentation of Brooke:
Brooke Smith is an intuitive productivity coach and mindfulness expert.
She helps busy women entrepreneurs get the time freedom they dreamed of when they started their businesses.
She has a Ph.D. from the University of Toronto, an MBA from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business, and certifications in yoga instruction, therapeutic yoga, life coaching, wellness coaching, NLP, and hypnotherapy.
She has been featured in over a dozen media outlets including Forbes, Fast Company, InStyle Magazine, Thrive Global, and Parade Magazine.
Main topics during the interview:
What is an intuitive productivity coach?
My approach to productivity is very kind, very patient and intuitive. I’m helping my clients find what works for them instead of trying to make them fit into a one size fits all productivity system.
“The best productivity habits are the ones that we actually can do.”
1) What is the hidden root cause of most productivity problems?
It all comes down to our mind. Both our conscious thoughts, beliefs and identities and our unconscious patterns and habits and the way we manage our stress and our emotions and our nervous system.
A lot of productivity challenges feel external but the reason is because we are overcommitted. We are afraid to say no. We are throwing all of this friction (procrastination, indecision…).
We need to remove all the barriers that we have put up on our way.
We are in constant gratification. This all leads us to believe that people always have expectations for us. “We all survived in a world without the internet, without cell-phones or voicemail.”
A huge part of putting less on our plates is rewinding to this mindset, “the world is going to be just fine if you put your phone on silent just for one hour”.
Culture taught us that women need to do it all.
We are fine if we don’t get the things done. We are fine if we say no.
“We have the freedom to choose where we put our time and energy.”
We define productivity as doing more as we should define it as the things that we are doing that move us in the direction.
2) WHat's The simple mindfulness practice that can rewire your brain for productivity?
The biggest thing is to recognize that our thoughts are not who we are. We can let go of the thoughts that are not helping us and keep the ones that are helping and you can do that through mindfulness.
“All the things that we have been doing for years are hardwired into our nervous system.” We need to disrupt a pattern.
In order to practice mindfulness, your brain has 2 ways to interact with the world:
- Direct experience: it’s direct sensory of what is around you
- Narrative experience: where our mind makes everything mean something
We live in the narrative experience and we are struggling to live in the direct experience and to take a break from our thoughts.
The brain cannot do both at once. So when you are practicing to be in the present, it turns the volume down. We can be intentional to what we are giving our attention to.
I’m doing a mindfulness exercise 20 times a day.
We do take instructions well as humans. The more you are going to think about it, the more you are going to make it a reality.
The things that we are used to doing and the perfect things to start practicing mindfulness.
3) Why striving for control can undermine your productivity, and what to do instead.
I was wasting time micromanaging my body.
As entrepreneurs, we try to control things that are outside of our control. We worry a lot about the things outside our control. They are things we can influence: how we show up, how we handle ourselves. We need to let go of the illusion that we can control the future.
You need to practice meditation to let go of control. We need to focus on the things that we can control and are going to change something.
Worrying is exhausting. We are not worrying, we are accepting that we cannot control the present moment. We cannot predict the future. And this is freeing us up!
What’s your advice to get more done?
Don’t carry stuff in your head, just write it down!
Hey you! I’m glad you are here!
I’m Ysaline, a French time management coach who helps purpose-driven female professionals -just like you- master their time, be more productive and make life-changing money.
I used be the hard-working girl next door, constantly stressed and tired until I couldn’t take it anymore.
It took me years to get where I’m today.
But one thing is sure: making time to find your path, plan your goals, take action to change your life is within your reach.
The last years, I have watched my clients’ lives flourish in unexpected ways. Even if you’re not 100% there for yourself, I’ve got your back!
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