Want to be more productive? Most productive people have a strict routine they adhere to that helps them achieve their goals and make the most of their to-do lists. Below, discover 6 ways to improve your productivity and make the most of your time.
Map out your week
Setting goals and mapping them out will help you become much more productive. Once you have your monthly or yearly goals in place, sit down every Sunday night and break your goals down to weekly bites to stay on track. The goal is to become more disciplined and create structure for your week. Not doing this can cause things to slide to the backburner and more urgent tasks will take your focus from your goals.
Block out time for tasks
It’s common for people to block out time for appointments and meetings, but why not go further and give yourself designated blocks of time to finish important tasks. Block out time for writing a blog, a proposal, or to craft a presentation. Being proactive means these tasks won’t disappear into the ether or be forgotten about. There’s no point in making a to-do list without also blocking out time to do each task.
Shift to half-hour meetings
Most meeting agendas can be handled in 30 minutes, and many subjects can be wound up after a quarter of an hour, so allocating an hour for meetings by default may not be the wisest choice. Take a close look at your agenda. Does it require an extensive team meeting? Can you instead sent out a mass email to update your team members on important projects?
Stop trying to multitask
Having your focus split while you’re trying to complete any kind of task will affect your productivity. Even if the task is tedious and doesn’t require much brain power, you won’t be operating at optimal capacity. Trying to do two things at once will only cause both tasks to suffer, meaning you very often will have to go back and fix mistakes, which negates whatever time you thought you were saving.
Finish one large task
Everyone these days suffers from time pressures. We have work, projects, and a host of other necessary activities large and small that eat up our time. Most people make a to-do list that is too long to complete all the tasks in a day, but the way to feel productive first thing in the morning is to make sure you do one big task first. The resulting feeling of accomplishment will propel you forward and give you the energy you need to complete your other tasks.
Include rest time
People need rest as much as they need food, fresh air, and water. We need to be able to recharge ourselves. When we do, we give our brains a chance to rest. You’ll very often find that when you return from a break, your brain has come up with new ideas or new approaches for a project. So be sure to take the occasional break during the work day, even if it’s just to walk to the water cooler, organise any clutter in your desk drawers, or have a quick chat with a colleague. The pause in work will help your brain reset and cool down, which will make you more productive once you’re back to the task at hand.
Kym Wallis, the founding director of Higher Ranking, has over 15 years of advertising sales, digital strategy, and business development experience. He is currently working as Digital Adviser for Integr8IT.