‘Focus on being productive instead of busy’
~ Tim Ferris
Do you ever have those days where you feel like you have been non-stop all day, but you have achieved absolutely nothing? It happens to us all.
It is easy to fall into the trap of being extremely busy, but not being very productive. Follow these tips to increase your levels of productivity and make the most of your time:
1) Go to bed early and have a great night sleep
If you get a good quality sleep, it will mean you’re fresher and more alert during the day which can help with your productivity. Lack of sleep can drain you of all your energy and make you extremely slow and unproductive.
2) Don’t snooze
If you get up as soon as your alarm goes off you save time that is otherwise wasted. Choose to either have the extra sleep, or get up with your alarm to benefit from that precious time in the morning you can use productively.
3) Eat a healthy breakfast
If you eat a healthy breakfast it can give you energy for the day ahead and if you start the day in a healthy way, there is more likelihood this will continue throughout the rest of the day. The healthier you are, the more energy you should have and the more productive you can be.
4) Exercise in the morning
The main thing that stops you exercising in the morning is your own motivation. If you exercise first thing it gives you energy that will support productivity for the rest of the day. It also gets you in the right mindset to tackle the day ahead.
5) Allocate specific time for social media
You can end up wasting much valuable time in the morning and throughout the day by constantly checking social media. If you allocate specific time when you check and put a limit on this, it can help to stop distracting you throughout the day.
6) Create a list of what you want to achieve for the day
By creating a list of the things you want to achieve each day, you are much more likely to be productive. It especially helps speed up your transition time. This is the time it takes to move from one task to another. If you already have a list of what you want to achieve it is easier to get started on the next task as you finish what you are doing.
7) Start with the hardest thing first
Tackling your hardest job first means you tick it off early on and everything else that follows seems easier. If you get your hardest job under your belt as the first thing you do, it can set your day up to achieve so much more.
8) Work around your energy
If you have all your energy in the morning, tackle the hardest tasks during this time. If after lunch, you have an energy slump, leave your lighter tasks for this time period. Learn when in the day you have energy and when you lack it and allocate your tasks around this energy.
9) Single task
Rather than flitting from task to task, choose one thing that needs doing and stick at it until it is done. You will find you waste much less time and get a lot more done by focusing in this way.
10) Process e-mails
It is easy to fall into the habit of quickly checking your emails and leaving them all in your inbox ready to come back to later to action. This duplicates effort as you have to reread them all. Try processing your emails as you read each one. Don’t leave them in your inbox, action them immediately.
11) Limit TV
If you want to be more productive during the day reduce the amount of TV you watch. Instead of spending any time in front of the TV locating something half decent to watch, try only watching prerecorded programmes that you specifically want to see. You will find a lot more time in the evenings that you might have previously spent in front of the TV.
I’d love to hear your hints and tips of how you become more productive in the comments below.