The Daily Productivity Habits of Famous Creative Minds
No two people think the same, especially when it comes to sticking to a productive routine. You could argue that it depends on the industry a person is in, but for some, they follow how their mind works. When we investigated the Powerful Productivity Habits of CEOs, we found that work/life balance was something across the board that people could agree on. As it turns out the 9 – 5 schedule doesn’t appeal to everyone. Those that make their own schedules, and stick to them, are the ones that made history with their discoveries and creations. The following infographic shows the daily productivity habits of famous creative minds. Take a look and see how they spent their day.
Want to develop a better work routine? Discover how some of the world’s greatest minds organized their days.
Click image to see the interactive version (via Podio).
Creative Work and Sleep
Not everyone on the infographic is an early riser. Those that did their most creative work at night include Wolfgang Mozart, Sigmund Freud, and Pablo Picasso. Many writers reported that they worked on their books and essays in the morning. Some say the morning is when you have the most lucid mind. Others say your subconscious works while you sleep and waking up from a dream can bring inspiration. William Styron had an unconventional schedule where he was most active in the late hours of the night. He would then head off to bed to get up late in the afternoon to daydream, write, and sleep some more. Clearly, his odd sleep schedule paid off for his rewarding and successful writing career.
When first starting out working on a new experiment, thesis, or book, not many can do so without a steady income stream. Kurt Vonnegut taught, as did Immanuel Kant and Gustave Flaubert. French author Voltaire’s father had high hopes of him becoming a lawyer. Voltaire wanted to be an author so he pretended to work in Paris as an assistant to a lawyer. That’s not to say he wasn’t working though. Victor Hugo didn’t have a day job at all, his “creative work” was his work. Mary Flannery O’Connor was another author who was a full-time writer, publishing hundreds of essays, short stories, and a couple of full-length novels. As a devote Catholic, she spent much of her time at church and was well-known for her enjoyment of birds. Some hobbies can be just as grueling as a day job can be.
Leisure and Exercise
Kingsley Amis had an odd schedule when it came to entertainment and exercise. It is largely known that Amis had a drinking problem and would spend quite a bit of his day at the pub. Other brilliant minds turned to exercise when not spending their time catching up with friends and family. Charles Dickens would spend hours walking around London. Similar to Dickens, John Milton would enjoy a stroll through his garden. Two of the greatest minds in literature took breaks throughout the day in the same way. Maybe great minds do think alike!
Want to emulate some of the greatest minds in history? A starting point is learning how to speed read. Speed reading is a time-management skill that can help you get through that stack of papers sitting on your desk in no time.
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