Like most people, I find it very difficult to focus at work from time to time. This is particularly true around the holidays. The constant flow of email, text messages and social media combined with the distractions of the season wreaks chaos with my productivity more often than I care to admit. Here are some daily tips to help you manage your time.
Be inspired daily.
We all have different things that inspire us. Try listening to an inspirational podcast in the car before work. Post a quote by your desk so you can see it every day. Whatever your inspiration is, ensure that you can look at it daily. This will help you keep going especially on the days where you are struggling to be productive.
Get smart with your apps.
Project management tools like Trello, etc. can help you stay organized and keep your team in the loop as well. Having a task list to keep you on track, or even an app that sends you updates about project status and deadlines is enormously helpful.
Organize your work area.
Clutter is extremely stress-inducing and distracting. A chaotic desk can make you feel overwhelmed and anxious. Make sure to keep everything organized and clean. The same goes for your computer desktop.
Prioritize. Prioritize. Prioritize.
Start each day by prioritizing the tasks for that day and setting your performance goals. Complete one priority task before moving on to the next one. Multi-tasking makes us feel busy and productive, but it can be the enemy of productivity as it often keeps us from bringing a single project to completion quickly.
Practice a Power Hour.
What is Power Hour? It’s 60 minutes when you buckle yourself to a seat, lock the door and do what needs to get done —no distractions, no email, no excuses. At the end of the hour, you’re free to move on.
Measure success in tasks completed, not hours worked.
Tasks completed determine success. As you learn to knock out tasks quicker, you get more done. Create a personal competition and try to up your performance in terms of daily tasks completed. Do this and watch your productivity shoot through the roof.
Schedule in some relaxation.
Avoid getting carried away and over-scheduling your life. Remember to leave time for fun and relaxation, no matter how busy you are. Maybe with a Snickers, maybe with a cup of tea, or maybe with a walk around the office. It’s easy to burn yourself out if you try to work at full throttle all day long. Burnout isn’t productive.
They say your thoughts become your reality. A positive mental outlook goes a long way toward keeping you happy, healthy, and productive.