Hello Tips: How to Stay Productive- and get things done!
Staying productive in the age of social media, technology, and constant stimulation is as tough as it sounds. We have been conditioned to constantly crave stimulation and have short attention spans. It’s not easy to break these habits but it is possible. Maybe you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed juggling work, life, and staying creative? Often times having a cluttered mind can make you feel overwhelmed and diminish your productivity. Sometimes all it takes to increase my energy and get those creative juices flowing- is getting organized!
Over the years, I have been training and working with multiple people with all sorts of productivity styles and I have narrowed my top 5 tips for productivity.
Productive Tools: 5 Top Tips to help you stay Organized
Tip 1: Eliminate Distractions
The top tip for productivity is learning how to focus. Sounds easy right? Well it is a lot harder to master than we may think. In the world of multi-tasking, open tabs, phones, and constant noise we are being bombarded left and right with things that draw our attention. These “distractions” can be anything from having multiple projects, deadlines, back to back calls, or even being hungry. Working from home has not made breaking our distracting habits any easier.
What is focus?
Sounds simple but many experts would define focus as “the act of concentrating your interest or activity on something”. My focus begins when I say no to many things and yes to one. I must ignore many other things by default. In other words, elimination is a prerequisite for focus. As Tim Ferriss says, “What you don’t do determines what you can do.”
Turn off your tv, put down the phone, finish your sandwich and stop playing your workout music playlist while you’re on a deadline. All these “distractions” can make the difference between finishing on time or having to ask for a deadline extension.
Tip 2: Create a To-do-List
Creating a to do list is the first initiative in getting organized and being productive. Writing your tasks, goals, or projects down has been proven to increase retention and fulfillment. By writing things down you enable a higher level of thinking and therefore more focused action. Vividly describing your goals in written form is strongly associated with goal success, and people who very vividly describe or picture their goal are anywhere from 1.2 to 1.4 times more likely to successfully accomplish their goals than people who don’t.
Tip 3: Separate Work Space
Having your workspace in your living space has been a huge challenge for many in the last 2 years. I know for myself, my greatest moments of productivity came when I designated a specific area to work in. Physically dividing my home area and work area creates a physical barrier for your mind to be productive in. This is also a great habit to create to prevent feeling overwhelmed and overworked.
If you’re sitting in a messy area thinking about how messy your area is and how you should clean it, you’re probably not getting a lot of work done. Take a few minutes every day to tidy up your workspace. You can do this by throwing out unnecessary items and maintaining whatever organization system suits your style, so those extra distractions and clutter don’t bog.
In addition to cleaning or organizing your workspace every day, organizing your to-do list so you don’t waste time at the beginning of a workday is helpful. At the end of the day, sit down and write what you need to get done tomorrow.
Tip 4: Get Ready (Physically and Mentally)
It’s easy to work from home and roll out of bed and straight to your computer. Yes, I am guilty of that as you might also be. But physically getting ready in the morning has shown to increase productivity, mood, and efficiency.
Especially if you’re working from home and you’re not leaving the house, I think you need to have that differentiation between being in work mode and having leisure time. Get dressed into your work outfit, then when your day is done change into your tracksuit or pajamas. It’s important to have that break and change your outfit. Your environment is not changing as much at the moment so it’s important to change your outfits to signal that shift in your day.
If you look good, you feel good and if you feel good, you do good.
Tip 5: Set Goals and Get Started
With companies such as Google and Microsoft adapting to an approach of giving workers more control over their schedules, assignments and responsibilities, this seems to be the way forward to engaging employees over the more traditional ‘if you reach goals you gain a financial reward’ approach. There are different types of goals you can set for yourself, but the key takeaway is that it’s important to have something to aim for. Finally, research suggests that once you have set goals, it’s important that people be committed and actively want to work towards them. People need to be working towards something they feel is important, rewarding, or aligns with their personal values, especially with an increasing percentage of workforces now being made up of millennials, who generally have high regard for their personal values in the workplace.
Let us know if you found these helpful and leave any comments below with your own tips!
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