Sometimes being able to improve your productivity means following some common sense advice. Everyone has their own list of resources and techniques that works for them on an individual level, but any technique has to come down to certain core changes that must be made. If you want to improve your productivity right now, then here is what you’re going to do.
#1. Put Less On Your Plate
Having a lot of work staring at you can be overwhelming. It can create stress. It can cause you to throw your hands up in the air, utter your favorite expletive, and decide to binge watch your favorite shows on Netflix instead. The journey of a 1,000 miles doesn’t begin with a 1,000 mile road trip. It begins one small step: the decision to go in the first place.
Put fewer things on your to-do lists every day. Focus on just one task at a time, making sure your most important tasks are completed before any others. Put the tough tasks first because your greatest energy reserves are when you start your day. That will help you become more productive.
#2. Plot Your Strategies Early
It can be helpful to plan out your day not as you’re driving to work, but the night before you have to get something important accomplished. This will stop you from worrying about what you’ll do all night. You’ll also have more confidence going into the tasks which need to be completed because you’ve rehearsed what will happen during the plan’s formation.
#3. Be Mindful of the Present
There are two timing traps that kill productivity levels for most people: regret over past decisions or anxiety over future results. You can’t change the past. You can make your future be whatever it is you want it to be. What you have is this moment, right here, where you can get something done. Your choice is pretty simple. You can work or you can choose not to work. Which will it be?
#4. Create a Routine and Stick To It
Humans orientate themselves on structures. This is why we eat meals around the same time every day. We have working hours that are about the same every day [at least hopefully, right?]. We go the same places, do the same things, hang out with the same friends… yet when it comes to work, we try to vary the routine because doing the same tasks in the same way is considered “boring.”
Find your routine at work and then stick to it. Be committed to checking emails at the same time every day. Do your paperwork at the same time. Listen to voicemails at the same time. When you create this structure of routine around how you work, you’ll find that productivity can increase dramatically because you’re focused instead of distracted by the changes you’ve created for yourself.
#5. Find Your Bad Habits
Maybe you feel the need to check Facebook every 20 minutes. You might be on Twitter constantly. Maybe you just sit in your office chair, twiddle your thumbs, and daydream of winning the lottery so you can purchase a horse farm. We all have bad habits that rob us of productive time. We’re also so accustomed to those habits that they become part of who we are. To find your bad habits, you must either log all of your time and discover what your daily routines are or have someone you trust do this for you.
The benefit of this method is that you will see where your time is being wasted in a useful manner. You can then develop a plan to counter those time-wasters so your productivity levels will begin to rise.
Improving productivity isn’t always easy. It isn’t going to happen on its own. Use these essential methods to begin working on your habits and routines and you may just find that extra push you’ve been needing to find.