“PRODUCTIVITY and Success” was the topic requested of me when the management of Porta Vaga sponsored PINAGKAKABSAT 2016 last Sept. 8, the birthday of Mama Mary.

The two-day event for over 250 people was held at the San Pablo Seminary.

As it was a privilege to speak to our beloved priests, nuns and lay parish workers, I was excited and spent some time preparing the talk. Thanks once again, to Jayson, for the PowerPoint presentation.

I defined Productivity as the measure of output from a given input, over a period of time. Output being the products, revenue or end result of any effort. And Input being the time, talent and resources put into any project or endeavor.

For the definition of success, I said that success is the fulfillment of one’s purposes and achievement of one’s goals, rather than the commonly used description of success measured by the accumulation of material wealth, assets, power and prestige.

For productivity to be achieved, it would greatly help if the purpose and reason for doing tasks are clearly known or established. When done for a higher purpose, as in doing all things for God’s glory, one is better motivated to give one’s best. Thus two key words for productivity are PURPOSE and PRIORITIZED GOALS.

Knowing one’s goals will help one be productive if performing the tasks helps in achieving one’s spiritual, family, career, financial or personal goals.

Colossians 3:23 says a lot about productivity and exhorts all of us to give our best. It is the basis for our 25-year-old motto since McDonald’s Session first opened: “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.”

I shared my amazement as a child when I would look at ants who would move in a single line to where food or dead insects would lie. Usually they would meet another line of ants coming from that area and would “greet” and “acknowledge” in a split second each and every ant. I have also not seen an ant dead, or in a stationary position they would all be moving fast and purposefully towards food, or be carrying food from a source.

Proverbs 6:6 describes the wisdom we can learn from ants: “Go to the ants you sluggards, learn from its ways and be wise. They have no commanders, no rulers, no overseers; yet they store provisions during summer and gather food during harvest.”

Five out of many tips for productivity, which I shared from my heart, are:

1. Stay focused

2. Avoid distractions

3. Set time limits

4. Avoid gossip

5. Wake up early

Setting time limits forces us to compress all that we need to say and do, and avoids wasted time and lost opportunities.

Gossip was pointed out as the source of many conflicts and intrigues in many organizations and offices. Gossip affects morale and relationships, which when soured, hamper productivity and makes the work environment unhealthy.

Waking up early gives you extra quiet time to plan out your day and do necessary and important work.

As someone once said,” Do what is necessary, then what is possible. Soon you will be doing the impossible.”

My Dearest Pinagkakabsat Participants,

It is my fervent hope that each of you had something valuable to take home after the talk.

As I always say to our team, “knowledge is nothing or useless, unless applied”. May you all apply what you have heard and may it make your lives more productive and lead you to success.