How Productivity Olympics Sabotages Your Sanity (Do This Instead)

Nate Anglin
4 min readFeb 28, 2024

Remember that feeling in elementary school when the teacher handed out those giant reward charts with enough stickers to fuel a unicorn stampede?

That was my entire adult life, except instead of gold stars, I craved the validation of crossing things off an ever-growing to-do list. I even tried to convince myself that my ADHD was some productivity superpower.

Like a caffeinated squirrel on meth, I’d bounce from one task to another, convinced I was one hustle away from enlightenment (or at least a spotless office). The future was this blurry Shangri-La where I’d finally be “enough,” every to-do list item was a stepping stone on that path.

Except, the only thing I ever reached was peak exhaustion.

Like, the kind of exhaustion where you start alphabetizing your sock drawer just to feel accomplished. Turns out, chronic low-level anxiety, fueled by the constant hum of “gotta do more, gotta be more,” isn’t exactly a recipe for inner peace.

It’s a wrecking ball.

In the tapestry of our daily lives, the undercurrent of chronic low-level anxiety weaves a subtle yet profound impact on our Return On Time.



Nate Anglin

Small Biz Investor, CEO, & helping others improve their performance, profit, & potential w/out sacrificing what’s most important.