The new year is in full swing and the tasks are beginning to pile up on all of our plates. We’re being inundated with more meetings, projects, and deadlines than ever. This increased demand can leave us feeling overwhelmed, stressed, and unable to make it all happen. If only there were a duplicate copy of ourselves to help us out!
Don’t worry, there’s no need to replicate yourself. During my many years of working for myself and coaching others, I’ve realized that being your most productive really just boils down to being focused, organized, and feeling your best.
Here are several easy ways that you can embrace productivity, and get more done in less time:
- Turn off your notifications. Nothing can pull you away from productive work faster than those little dings on your smart phone or computer. It all starts off quite innocently with that quick chirp making you wonder what’s going on. But before you know it, you’re completely derailed. Who needs your help? Who’s mentioning you on Twitter? Who sent you an email or a text? The list goes on and on. The key to productivity, however, is staying in the present and completely focusing on the task at hand. Notifications thwart your focus so ensure that you take the necessary steps to silence them in order to fully concentrate.
- Schedule your day. There is a time and a place for everything- so add it to your schedule. That means scheduling absolutely everything including the fun (and not so fun) stuff. It’s okay to scroll on social media, binge on Netflix, or google things randomly, but you have to set aside time for it. Don’t use any of these activities as a vehicle for procrastination- procrastination is the enemy of productivity.
- Break things down into chunks. It can be overwhelming and intimidating to work on large projects, or seemingly difficult tasks. As such, it’s helpful to break them down into smaller chunks so that you can tackle them a little bit at a time. Before you know it, your larger tasks will be well underway, and they’ll become a lot less intimidating too.
- Set daily and weekly goals. Every day (and week), I set goals for myself regarding what I want to accomplish, and then I hold myself accountable to those goals. Try picking 2-3 major items that you want to accomplish each day, while having a big picture of what needs to be accomplished over the entire week.
- Identify time-sucks. We all have those things that unnecessarily pull us away from the tasks that we have to get done. What are your time sucks and how can you get rid of or reduce them? Come up with a plan to minimize their impact and effect on your overall productivity. You’ll thank yourself for it.
- Think about both the short-term and long-term plans. I look at everything in both the long and short term. You can’t accomplish all that you want to at once, so it can be extremely helpful to attach your plans to a loose timeline. Understand both what you want to achieve and when you hope to get there (as well as how). It’s important to be somewhat flexible with yourself too.
- Don’t forget about selfcare. If you are happy, healthy and well-rested, you are going to be so much more productive. Put selfcare at the top of your list so that you can maximize the time that you do spend working, and have plenty of time left over to engage in other activies that feed your mind, body and spirit.