Life shouldn’t be difficult. It should be fun and exciting, even when we’re at work. That’s why it is so important to maximize our productivity. There’s a good chance that you’re working harder than you need to be to achieve the results you want. Here are 8 key ways you can start working smarter today instead of harder.
#1. Give yourself time to think. Rushing around during the day is a guarantee that a bad decision or two is going to get made. Make sure you give yourself time to think at strategic points during the day so that you can keep your day on track. Eliminate the distractions and let your mind operate at its peak efficiency.
#2. Give yourself permission to take a break. Most people take a 10-15 minute break about every 2 hours during the working day. Try doubling that whenever possible. People who take a 15 minute break for every hour of productive work they complete see a productivity boost of at least 10% on average.
#3. Give yourself a different job in the afternoon. After a good lunch and an extended break, the last thing you want to do is go back to work. You’re also more tired in the afternoon and more willing to say “Forget this – I’ll do it tomorrow.” Make your afternoon time be when you meet with people, schedule appointments, and shift gears so your fatigue doesn’t get the best of you.
#4. Give yourself permission to take a break. Really. Just do it. Even if you’re just watching cat videos on YouTube, it is important to let your mind rest. That’s why we’re counting this twice.
#5. Give yourself a good plan to get through the day. This might just be the most important thing on this list to include for your day. Having a flow chart of the things that you need to get done can really help you power out some good work. It will also keep you on track, keep you focused, and give you an intense feeling of satisfaction when you meet your goals. Just make sure you plan for emergencies because there is always something that invariably comes up during the day.
#6. Give yourself time with your family. It is important to connect with your family on a daily basis. Have dinner together. Pick the kids up at school if you can. Call your folks on the phone if you live alone. Go out with friends after work. Relationships are the glue that keep us together and let us stay within our sweet spots of productivity.
#7. Give yourself a real bed time. Real sleep means giving your mind time to wind down. Being free of technology can really encourage this. Have some warm milk, a cup of caffeine-free tea, and read a book… or do what works best for you and then stick to that routine.
#8. Give yourself enough time to get a good night of rest. Sleep is essential. If you’re only getting 4-6 hours of sleep every night, then your body is running out of fuel prematurely during the day. Shoot for 7-9 hours instead to see the best results possible.
You don’t need automation or passive income generation to work smarter instead of harder. You just need to have a solid routine that lets you be consistently productive every day. Implement these methods and you may just find that you have a lot more time in your day for fun things to do than you ever realized.