For the next three weeks I’m putting on my ‘productivity pants’

by | Oct 21, 2013 | Productivity Experiments

Takeaway: For the next three weeks I’m mixing up what I wear, and measuring how my clothing affects my productivity.

Estimated Reading Time: 1 minute, 34s.


For the next three weeks I’m going to be dressing up, down, and sideways, and then measuring how what I wear affects my energy, focus, motivation, and ultimately my productivity.

At the end of the experiment I’m going to (of course) write about everything I learn.

Compared to a few other productivity experiments I’ve done (like watching 70 hours of TED talks in 7 days, and meditating for 35 hours in a week), this experiment is downright boring. But I have a theory: what you wear has a profound effect on how you think about yourself, and ultimately how productive you are. I’m going to put that theory to the test over the next three weeks.

doucheinasuitHere’s my plan:

  • Days 1-5: Wear a suit and tie, or something formal
  • Days 6-10: Dress between “business casual” and casual
  • Days 10-15: Wear “lazy” clothes (pajamas, track suits, etc.)
  • Days 16-21: Alternate, dressing formal, casual, lazy; formal, casual, lazy

I also have a second goal for this experiment: I want to calculate my body’s natural rhythm over a typical day, and then experiment with ways to become more productive knowing how my energy fluctuates throughout the day.

For example: am I a morning owl or a night owl? And how can I become more productive by doing more demanding activities when I have more energy?

Of course, even though I’ll be figuring out my body’s natural rhythms, I’ll absolutely pass on everything I learn to you.

I have three main three rules for this experiment:

  • Very little caffeine, alcohol, or any other mood enhancers or depressants
  • Wake up naturally (whenever I don’t have commitments in the morning)
  • Track my energy, focus, and motivation in a spreadsheet every hour, on the hour

I’ll of course be writing about other topics while the experiment is in progress, and you bet I’ll be posting about everything I learn after the three weeks are up!

Written by Chris Bailey

Chris Bailey has written hundreds of articles on the subject of productivity and is the author of three books: How to Calm Your Mind, Hyperfocus, and The Productivity Project. His books have been published in more than 40 languages. Chris writes about productivity on this site and speaks to organizations around the globe on how they can become more productive without hating the process.

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