Understanding Your Philosophy of Productivity

And how it changes over time

Heyo, Nik here! 👋

How are you? I’m well. I’m in London. It’s nice to spend time with my girlfriend. Life is slow, but that’s nice.

So is book writing, by the way. Seriously. It’s hard. I’m procrastinating a TON on it. But I think that’s also a good sign. Fear shows us what matters. I’ll keep at it.

On a positive note, I’m about to finish Part 2 of Self-Love To Go. When that happens, I’ll send out Part 1 for your feedback. Rolling progress, and such. Can’t wait!

Until then, I want to share an idea with you. It helped me decide to quit my Substack and just take as long as I need to write the book. What can said idea do for you?

I think it’ll let you understand what role work plays in your life, how that role has evolved over time, and where it’s headed, which, in turn, is a key to happiness.

That idea is…

The Wheaton Scale of Productivity

The concept of a Wheaton Scale comes from permaculture. A man named Paul Wheaton invented it. He argued that as people mature in the space, they lose touch with those not as experienced as them.

Wheaton defined 11 levels of expertise and then explained why it’s hard for someone on level 5 to relate to someone on level 2 – they’ve long forgotten what it felt like to be there. Similarly, it’s hard for someone at level 5 to understand why a level 10er is doing what they’re doing – it feels too weird and abstract.

I’m not into permaculture, but I think the Wheaton Scale as a concept transfers well to other areas, for example productivity. To structure my thoughts around it, I defined 7 levels. That was as far as I could see.

Having spent most of the last 7 years on level 3, “Max Output,” and a little on level 4, “Work-Life Balance,” I realized that, right now, I have to learn to be “Anti-Busy” (level 5). It means deliberately cutting back on work until boredom reveals what’s truly important, and then doing what really matters - with focus but without haste.

This is where Wheaton Scales improve our understanding: As a reader of my work, it might be hard to understand why someone who used to publish so consistently now mostly disappears from view. Now, you know: The place of work in my life is changing, and so the next iteration of being a writer will look different.

I hope the concept will help you understand how work fits into your life, and, more than that, allow you to communicate your philosophy of productivity to others.

You can read the full article for free here. It’s a friend link, which allows you to circumvent Medium’s paywall. Or, just hit the button below:

Discover the Wheaton Scale

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Thank you! Talk soon.

Your email friend,
-Nik