Six productivity boosts to get more done
Do you ever find yourself running around so much that by the end of the day you feel like you’ve accomplished nothing? Don’t worry; we’ve all been there.
But this ‘busyness’ is one of the biggest barriers to productivity. When you are productive you are purposeful and methodical in what you do; you aren’t racing to put out fires or trying to multitask to-dos.
So how do you get back in control of your schedule and accomplish more in the process? Here are six productivity boosts to help you get more done.
1. Take regular breaks
While it can often seem like you are ‘too busy’ to take a break, the truth is you are too busy not to. Your concentration and cognitive function start to decline without regular breaks. Simply by giving yourself a 5-15mins break to refresh can give you the mental boost and space you need to tick off more tasks on your to-do list.
2. Apply the 90-minute rule
Schedule your work into 90-minute intervals. After this time has passed take a break and do a different task. Mixing up your to-dos is an excellent way to keep yourself engaged and challenged, and your brain active and alert.
3. Avoid Distractions
Easier said than done I know. We live in a time where distractions are constant. Phone calls, social media, emails and interruptions can often take our attention away from what we are meant to be doing.
The key is to manage your distractions. Shut down your browser and emails, close your door, turn your phone on do-not-disturb and if needed disconnect from the Internet until a task is complete. Do whatever you need to do to maintain focus.
4. Have fun!
The more you like a task or make it fun, the more motivated you will be to do it. So why not find ways you can turn your tasks into games? Or set yourself a reward once done?
Not convinced? Chemical reactions take place in our brains as a result of playing games. Research has shown that dopamine, a key factor in motivation, productivity, and focus, is released when there is a sequence of challenges resulting in achievement. Testosterone is also released when there is a sense of victory, which can enhance your mood, increase energy and improve your self-esteem.
5. Check your environment
Your environment can have a significant impact on your productivity and frame of mind. The more cluttered your environment, the more cluttered your thoughts. Spend five to ten minutes each morning bringing order to your surroundings; you’ll be surprised at the difference it can make.
6. Do the hard tasks first
While it can be tempting to leave the most difficult task until last, this can often make it appear bigger and scarier than it really is. Instead, focus on the hardest (or worst) task first, not only will you get it out of the way, but you’ll also feel an enormous sense of accomplishment which will give you the motivation to tick-off the rest of your tasks.
7. Outsource or collaborate
The truth is you don’t have to do everything, look at what you can delegate, outsource or collaborate on with others. From work tasks to home tasks identify what you don’t like or aren’t good at and ask for help!