10 Simple Habits To Boost Your Productivity
Nowadays, it seems there are many hindrances to the productivity we desire. As days go by, our days are getting more complex and the productivity level is decreasing by the day. However, there are still some people that manage to get a lot accomplished each day by practicing and being consistent. These people aren’t superhuman; they’ve just mastered a few simple habits.
If you are struggling with staying on tasks, finishing tasks up or getting things done, you have to work at it. You have to learn to make yourself more productive so you can get a lot accomplished.
It is possible to be more productive than you are now. Productivity can be learned. Habits can be relearned. If you stick to these habits you can develop the ability to finish tasks and get a lot accomplished every day. The key is to increase your present levels of productivity by mastering a few simple habits.
Here are some simple habits to boost your productivity:
1.Plan Your Day the Night Before
To make sure you don’t waste time making plans in the morning, create your to-do list for the next day and prioritize it before going to sleep. Having a planning routine is so important, you can read more about that here. Personally, I create my top 3 to-do list to remind me that these tasks are the most important ones, then I list other appointments, schedules and other to do’s. This way, I can sleep easily without feeling overwhelmed and wake up already knowing what to do and the order to do them.
2. Use the 10-minute rule
If a task takes less than 10 minutes just get it done now! I do this with dishes and clutter I see that isn’t in the right spot. I would rather wash 1-2 dishes now than do a pile of it later.
If you are feeling unmotivated and overwhelmed this rule is for you! By telling yourself it will only take you a few minutes to do, you make it easier for yourself to accomplish that task. When you finish a task you feel great about yourself and it may help you to keep going!
3. Learn to Ask for Help & Learn To Say No!
As you look at your list of to do’s consider taking them off of your list and asking a family member or friend to help you out. If there is a job that someone else can do for you, ask for help. Don’t waste time stressing out about all the little things that are stressing you out when help is right in front of you. Or if you have the money, hire someone to help you!
If you are feeling overwhelmed by your to do list don’t take on more projects or favors for any one. Learn how to say no. If it doesn’t help you to reach your goals, just say no.
4. Break Down Big Projects
Don’t just write down your big project as one “to-do”, if you do that you’re just setting yourself up for failure. You will never be able to complete that project in one task, so you need to break it down. What would be the next action step you can take to get started on that task. Write that down and get it done!
For example, if I wanted to start decluttering I wouldn’t just write down declutter the house. I’d break it down by areas in the home or categories I want to start decluttering now, for example, the bedroom or all my clothes. I can break it down even further by choosing to declutter specific categories such as my makeup drawers or declutter my shirts. By making your big projects into small manageable tasks it helps you to get more done!
5. Declutter & Organize Your Desk
When I am working in my office I always to have to clean up first. Actual clutter clutters your mind. By decluttering and organizing first I am much more able to focus on my work. Too many things can distract you from important tasks. If you allow too many distractions in your work area, you will find yourself constantly distracted and unable to finish the task at hand. Remove the items that are hurting your ability to focus from the desk.
A research showed that those with neat and organized offices are more persistent and less frustrated and weary. A clean desk will help you stick with a task more than one and a half times longer. If you have too many things cluttering your workspace, try to remove some of them and you will see your productivity improve.
6. Batch Your Time
Productivity and time management goes hand in hand. If you don’t know what batching is, prepare to be amazed. Batching your time is when you group a bunch of similar activities and do it all at the same time to help you stay advantage of your focus. You can batch your time in hours or by days. I do this all the time, especially for my blog. Some activities I batch for my blog are writing blog posts, responding to emails, and designing printables. I have specific days that I do my activities and throughout my day I block off at least an hour or two in my day to do only that one task. The activities I batch for my personal and home life are running all errands on a specific day, deep cleaning the whole house once a week, and meal planning days. Batching your time is a great productivity tool to use to make the most of your day.
7. Finish What You Are Working On
Too many people claim they like to multitask; unfortunately, this may be the reason why you are not getting more done. You will be more productive when you finish the things you start before starting something new. I used to have a bad habit of trying to do everything at once. I have a million and one ideas floating through my head. When I am working on one project I would quickly think about my next idea and switch tasks to do that. That always results in a bunch of unfinished projects just sitting there. To be productive you need to focus on only one task and finish it. If you have the habit or the urge to start to something else, try to resist it. Taking on too many things can lead to non-completion of all the tasks.
8. Set a Timer & Take Breaks
A timer may seem like such a simple tool, but when used well, it can help you to get a lot done. A timer helps you to see how long doing something takes and then make the necessary adjustments. I like to set a timer when I embark on tasks; this gives me a sense of urgency and allows me to focus on the task.
Taking breaks also allows me to balance my time between home and personal tasks. I am a workaholic. So once I get in the zone, I can stay in it for hours. This isn’t always a good thing though because when I work too much I forget to cook dinner, sometimes I would even skip a meal! Then at the end of the day, I start getting sick and feel terrible! & once I am sick I can stop working for days! Not productive at all! Taking breaks has allowed me to take care of myself and the rest of my life as well.
9. Do the Hardest Thing First
Human beings are wired with a limited amount of willpower, creativity, and energy. If you want to be more productive, start your day by doing the hardest tasks first. According to a study, our prefrontal cortex, which is the part of the brain responsible for creativity is most active when we wake up; this is why creative activities such as design and writing are done in the morning. & once you start your day with the feeling of productiveness and completion of your task it will help you to keep that feeling throughout the day. You will then have the drive and motivation to finish more important tasks throughout your day.
If you start with the small easy tasks first you will never get around to your one big thing that would have actually helped you to reach your goals. The thing with small tasks is that they like to multiply quickly. You do one thing and another pops up! So you end up being busy all day and at the end of you’re left thinking, did I even get anything important done? Being busy does not equate to being productive.
According to the 80/20 Pareto principle, only 20% of your work that you do accounts for 80% of your results. So if you were to do only 2 things out of 10, make those 2 things the most important tasks. They will be worth much more than the other 8 smaller things combined! To ensure you achieve a lot in a day, start doing the hardest tasks once you wake up in the morning.
10. Use Deadlines
Use deadlines and time limits to your advantage. Even if you don’t technically have a deadline on a task, set one for yourself. I always set deadlines for my goals, if I didn’t, nothing would ever be completed. How many times have you procrastinated til the last minute on a project, and once the deadline was days or even hours away, you finally get started and finish it faster than you thought? This is the power of using deadlines. Knowing that you only have two hours to get something done will help ensure you don’t waste an hour of it on the internet.
Implement some of these habits into your daily routine and you will soon start getting more productive in your day. If you have other habits you can think of I would love to hear them, just comment below!