Productivity is something even the most organised people struggle with on a daily basis. Maintaining a high level of productivity throughout the week is a challenge, and as someone who is always looking for ways to get more done, I have tried it all.
Some productivity tips I’ve come across are great, while others just aren’t helpful at all. These four daily habits are ones I have managed to work into my schedule and they’ve helped me maintain my productivity to get more done everyday.
Eat nutritious meals
Some people might be able to get by on coffee and oxygen alone, but I’m willing to bet they burn out pretty fast. In order to be at your most productive, you need theenergy to fuel your day. In fact, nutrient and vitamin deficiencies are one of themain causes of fatigue.
Most of us will chalk it up to “needing another coffee” or “lack of sleep”, but low energy is quite possibly a result of a poor diet. Even if you think you’re eating reasonably well, certain vitamins like B12 and D are more difficult to come by and you might have to take supplements. I used to be someone who skipped breakfast, and while that didn’t seem to have an immediate negative effect on me (beyond the 10am hunger pangs), in the long-term having a quick morning meal has changed the way I feel day-to-day and allowed me to have the energy to get through my work.
Time block your day
Time blockingis the process of setting time aside for certain tasks throughout the day. This method might be considered a very rigid way of scheduling tasks, but if you’ve got a lot to do and can’t seem to manage your time effectively, it can really transform the way you work. You can make your time blocks as short as 10 minutes or as long as 2 hours but the goal is to focus your energy into one thing for the duration of the block. For example, you can give yourself 45 minutes of uninterrupted writing, studying or reading. It’s important to rid yourself of any distractions like emails or phone calls during the time you have allocated.
The trick to getting time blocking to work for you is to be honest with yourself about how long you can work on a certain task and being realistic about the outcomes. Getting 20 minutes worth of work done might not seem like a lot, but it’s still 20 minutes more than if you did notschedule that taskinto your day. If you work for 20 minutes per day for one work week, that’s 100 well-spent minutes!
If you are able to plan your week ahead, it’s recommended to time block each day of the week, or you can do it all the night before. Try it out – you never know, it might work for you!
I can’t be the only one who gets a buzz at the sight of a spotless room!
One of the biggest hurdles to productivity, believe it or not, is your mind. You’ve probably heard a million times that a clear space makes for a clear mind, and it’s definitely true, (why do you think Marie Kondo’sThe Life Changing Magic of Tidying Upbecame so popular)?
Having a clutter-free space to work in can make a world of difference to your productivity. Tidying up is a quick way to get a burst of energy that you can channel into your work day. You don’t have to clean your entire house to get that feeling, even just decluttering your desk or doing the dishes before you head out to work will get your head in the right frame of mind to get stuff done.
Keep a running list of things that are on your mind
Often, what holds us back the most are the sub-conscious little things that we can’t seem to get around to doing.
There’s a lot of background noise going on in your head which, if left unaddressed can lead to stress and anxiety. If you’re anything like me, you probably put a lot of pressure on yourself to stay on top of everything. This won’t help your productivity and will only make you feel worse. Having a running list of things that need to be done or are just on your mind might seem counter-intuitive, but writing them down can help you clarify what’s important and what can wait. When you do get things done, check them off the list.
You’ll realise that as the days go by, certain things that were on your mind one day aren’t as much of a big deal anymore, while things that are important will resurface and you can start thinking about how to tackle them.
And there you have it. These four daily habits are simple, and even slowly integrating them into your life might just have a positive effect on your productivity!