Do you finish the day feeling accomplished knowing you completed everything you set out to do? Or do you constantly feel like there are still tasks leftover that need your attention?
Getting through all the things you need to do can seem tough when it feels like there aren’t enough hours in the day, but most of the time there is and it’s just about finding a way to use your time and energy more wisely. Instead of getting overwhelmed by what has to be done, try starting with these simple tips for increased productivity.
1. Start with a good to-do list
Creating a to-do list is easy, but unless you create an effective to-do list there’s really no point in wasting your time. Before you go to sleep or the first thing in the morning, jot down a list of all the tasks you need to complete that day. List your tasks by priority and if you can, designate a time limit to each. The most important thing is to ensure you aren’t including an overwhelming number of tasks that you know you won’t be able to accomplish or make a good start on.
P.S. A good to-do app can go a long way here!
2. Understand when you work best
Understanding when you’re most productive during the day can help you maximise the time you actually spend working. Before you decide which tasks to complete first or last, take a minute to think about when you typically feel most focused and attentive. Conquer your larger and most challenging tasks during this time and leave other smaller tasks for when you know you’re not at your sharpest.
Just after lunch or late in the afternoon is when people most typically find themselves in a slump, so try to avoid anything strenuous here.
3. Focus on one task at a time
It can be tempting to jump from one task to another especially when you’ve got lots of thoughts and ideas running through your mind, however, try staying focused on the task you’re doing now before moving to the next. Research shows that productivity can be reduced by as much as 40 per cent when people switch tasks!
4. Remove any distractions
Do you constantly find yourself checking your social media pages at work? Do you work from home and get distracted by the TV or tasks that need to be done around the house? Try to remove the things that break your focus or switch up your workspace so you’re not tempted to give in to things near where you work.
A good workspace that contains only the equipment you need and with your phone out of sight can help you stay on track and focused on what you need to do
5. Give yourself a break
You’ve heard this one before but this tip isn’t going anywhere. Increased productivity for the day starts with what you do the night before, so make sure you’re getting enough sleep. Remember to take frequent breaks when you feel like your focus is slipping as you won’t not be utilising your time wisely if you attempt to stick it out. If you’re sitting at a computer all day, don’t waste your break on your phone or scrolling the internet, instead go for a short walk, get some fresh air or have a snack (choose the fruit over the office cake).
If you feel like you could make more out of your workday and want to double the work you complete during the day, these simple tips will help get you back on track.