1.Understand your purpose
There’s no point in optimising how fast you’re moving if you’re moving in the wrong direction. To boost your productivity, start by understanding why you’re doing the work you do, and what the long term goal is.
2.Get clear on your plan
Number the steps you need to accomplish your goal in as much detail as possible. This instantly makes it feel more achievable. Or it may unearth important questions – in which case, just add steps to your plan that enable you to find the answers you need.
3.Do one thing at the time
Multitasking might make us feel more productive, but it’s actually been proven to slow us down, causing us to surrender to the mind’s tendency to distract itself. Find a way to block out all distractions, even if just for a short time.
4.Find your flow time
If your day is constantly interrupted by meetings, it’s very difficult to get into a flow, a state where you’re really focused and able to go deep on complex tasks. Add three-hour ‘meetings’ to your calendar where you’re the only attendee. Co-workers will schedule around these busy times, and you can get uninterrupted work done.
5.Publicly commit to a deadline
Harness peer pressure to your advantage. If an important task doesn’t have a natural deadline, confidently tell people exactly when you’ll deliver it. No one wants to look ridiculous in front of teammates.
People often procrastinate because their highest priority tasks make them uncomfortable. When this happens, it’s helpful to be honest and think about why this is the case. If you don’t have the energy to tackle the problem right away, at least focus on the second highest priority on your list.
7.Take regular breaks
Common sense tells us that the more time we spend working, the more we’ll get done. But it’s simply not true. Our minds need time to recharge. A 15-minute break every 90 minutes is a good rule for accomplishing more by doing less. (please check my other post ‘Time to get work done’ to learn a great technique to help you manage time more effectively).
8.Take care of yourself
Sitting in an office for ten hours a day isn’t healthy. Make sure you use your time outside work to live a healthy, balanced life so that you have the energy needed to give it your all when you’re at work. Make plans, get a hobby, do whatever it takes to ensure you’re out of the door when the working day is done at least three days a week.
9.Take time to reflect
In the morning, try yoga, meditation, running or journaling to clear your consciousness and practise focusing before the day begins. It’s also important to plan just a few minutes at the end of each day to consider what went well and what didn’t. Are there improvements you could make in your workflow?
10.Use software to plan your day
Work management platforms such as Trello are the best place for this. Not only can you keep track of your to-do list, you can also manage your entire team’s workflow so you don’t need endless meetings to stay on the same page.