Think of the stress you feel when you are behind in projects, and it seems as though you are spinning in circles getting nowhere. Now, imagine how amazing it feels when you accomplish a lot, emptying your workload and freeing yourself to do more fun things.
Knowing that the projects lingering over your head are up-to-date and organized gives you a feeling of satisfaction and gratification. It’s when very little gets accomplished, and the to-do list keeps expanding- creating stress. There are ways to step up your game to increase productivity to make your days seem easier while performing more.
What is the secret to amping up your productivity to do both, have fun and get a lot of work finished on time? The good news is, there are proven ways that you can do both, increase your productivity and allowing yourself time to do things that rejuvenate your energy and prepare you for the next grueling task.
While bouncing back and forth from your laptop to your smartphone and your tablet may make you feel productive,the truth is,it is just the opposite. The two words, multitasking and productive have no reason to be in one sentence together.
Remaining focused on one project at a time is the key to productivity. Distractions such as phone calls, text, and reading and responding to emails you feel are urgent, are time-consuming and distract you from staying focused on your task.
Did you know that once you become distracted from a task, it takes up to 30 minutes for your brain to defrag and refocus once it is interrupted? One simple three- minute interruption can flush a half-hour done the drain. Multiple that by eight and a half your day of over.
Set Daily Expectation and Goals For Yourself
It’s very easy and tempting to drift back and forth into your favorite social media sites believing you will only look them over for just a few minutes. The problem is, the more you look, the more you want to look. Social media is fun, and it keeps you interacting with your friends and family. However, everything is ok in moderation.
Spending too much time on websites or clearing out your inbox and even the temptation of tampering with computer games can be time-consuming. Incidents such as these typically happen when you are unsure of your next steps.
It’s easy to fall into these patterns, and the best way to prevent them is to update your task list often and give specific actions you plan to take to reach completion. It is not only important that you make a task list, but you should keep it visible where it is a reminder of the work left to complete.
Set Expectations And Goals For Others
It’s hard to say no to people when you have a “my door is always open” policy. If everytime you respond to family, friends, clients, and co-workers, you are asking for trouble. If you make yourself available to every call, text or email, you are setting yourself up for a disastrous waste of precious time.
Unless it is an emergency, explain to others that your time is valuable and you need as few interruptions during the day as possible. Allowing outside distractions that steal your time and attention can be costly at the end of the day.
Create a schedule that you make yourself available and stick with it unless something serious needs to be discussed or handled. It may be difficult to have a conversation such as this with friends and loved ones, but in the long run, they will adapt to your request and find you are easier to be around with less stress from your neglected work.
Procrastination Is Not Your Friend
As discussed earlier, multi-tasking is no way to spend your day assuming you will get more done if you spread it out through different channels. Procrastination and multi-tasking accomplish very little. When you are struggling to find direction in your schedule, it is easy to put one task off to work on another.
If you allow yourself to jump from one task to another without completion, you are taking the risk of doing a whole lot of work but gaining no closure. You may let yourself believe that an email needs an immediateresponse or one project deserves more of your time than the other,but all this accomplishes is putting off for tomorrow what needed doing today.
Ways Procrastinating Can Ruin Your Plans
- You lose valuable time
- You blow good opportunities
- Goals not met
- Chance ruining your career
- Lowered self-esteem
- Poor decision making
- Damage your reputation
- Put your health at risk
Turn Away From Notifications
Modern technology has come far in the last decade. Jobs that once were in an office with other co-workers are now taking place in remote locations, many in the homes of the worker. Working from home has its perks, but on the flipside, it can be challenging as well.
Children, doorbells, neighbors stopping by, everyday simple things can turn a work day upside down. If you work on a computer all day, the first thing you should do is shut down all windows on your computer that don’t pertain to your job.
It is so simple to keep open pages ‘just in case”. These situations are nothing but a distraction from what you should be doing to perform your job. There are very rare situations that cannot wait an hour or two without your attention if you set a schedule and stick to it.
Yes, it feels good to be popular with instant messages asking you to meet for dinner, but it feels even better knowing your work is complete and you can kick back and relax now thatyour day was successful.
Time Yourself for Breaks
Overwhelming your brain is not the route to take. Your mind can efficiently focus on a task no more than two hours at a time before you need a mental break. Imagine what all you could accomplish in two hours with no interruptions!
Once you put this rule in place, you will be amazed at how much production you will see happen. You aren’t doing yourself any good by pushing your mind beyond its limit before you decide to stand up, walk away from your computer, and give your mind and body a break.
Set a timer for the first hour and get busy doing the work you put down on your task list. Set a timer for ten minutes to give yourself time to get a change of scenery, take a short walk, stretch your legs, and rejuvenate.
If you are working from home and decide that break would be anexcellent time to change out the laundry or check the mail, take your timer with you so that you aren’t held up by unnecessary stops to chat with neighbors or find yourself jumping from one chore to the other.
Getting off course throughout the day is very easy to do in today’s world of excitement on the internet. One message leads to a full conversation and before you know it, one hour has gone by, while your task list looks the same.
Situations such as this happen all the time causing a delay in completions, more procrastinations, and more stress as youstruggle to find a way to fit everything and everyone into your busy life. Organization is the key to success in every area of your life.
Find a strategy that works well for you and stick with it. Other people and projects will learn to work around your schedule as you pull the pieces together to combine your career and your personal life.