By Megan Donovan, Owner/Operator, SHIFT Work + Play
Moment of Truth: I have a love/hate relationship with the word “productive.”
There, I said it. It means different things to different people, tends to get overused, and often reinforces hustle culture.
And yet…we all have a lot on our plates. Sometimes talking about being productive is how we celebrate our accomplishments and sense of satisfaction and achievement. I get that, and I’m here for it!
Plus, as a parent, it often feels like we don’t have enough time for anything. We look back on those pre-kid days and can’t believe how much free time we had – and sometimes gasp at how we spent that time. That’s why people often hear me say “There’s no one more productive than a parent with a few hours of dedicated work time.” We’ve learned how to be efficient and effective because we have no other choice.
But here’s the thing, I’m happy to celebrate a few hours of being productive after getting a lot done. But being productive is not a state of being that I aspire to as a life goal and it’s not the word that guides me when I think about how we can support our members at SHIFT.
I know many of our parents get more accomplished during a 3-hour play session than most people get done in an 8-hour workday. And that’s amazing! We provide that opportunity to focus on work without being pulled in a million different directions so that being “productive” feels safe, supported and healthy. But the true magic comes from how our members feel while they’re here, who they meet along the way, and how being part of our community helps shape other aspects of their lives.
Our goal each and every day is to create an environment where parents can take a breath and work, rest, or socialize with the peace of mind that comes from knowing their kids are safe and having fun nearby and that the people around them see them as the sum of their parts. Because we’re not just employees or business owners or parents. We’re all those things and more. And “productive” doesn’t begin to capture how we tackle our time and take care of ourselves and our families.
Ultimately, however, it doesn’t really matter how I feel about the word “productive.” What matters is that no matter how our members feel about the word, we’re here to support them on their journey as professionals AND parents. So come be “productive” – and so much MORE – at SHIFT. We’d love to meet you and your family!