I had a free hour and I want to chip away on a paper I have been working on for two years. I've just started writing an introduction. If I keep chipping away at it I might finish it.
I spent an hour and all I did was edit two sentences and add five references after the second.
For the first sentence I couldn't find a paper I wanted to check something about. This was particularly frustrating because I was looking at it on this exact same computer two days ago. It's like not being able to find your keys even though you know they are on your bed.
Anyway the point of this is that maybe this was an effective hour working on a paper. Or maybe it wasn't. I really don't know.
Since I had my nervous breakdown two years ago I really have felt that I am very ineffective at work, not being as productive as I feel I should be. But I really have no idea if that is imposter syndrome or if I really have been less effective than I used to be.