Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Three Ways to Be More Productive Right Now

Three Ways to Be More Productive Right Now - A Simpler Grace #productivity #livingwell

Perhaps you are still stuck in holiday mode. Or maybe you have problems when the days are shorter. Whatever the reasoning is, we all struggle with productivity from time to time. We become easily distracted with everything going on around us and make excuse after excuse for why we can't accomplish what we need to. You might think productivity is achieved over a long period of time, after changing habits and routines, but that isn't the case. Today, I'm going to share three things you can do right now that will immediately increase your productivity. Read on to learn more.

These days, we are programmed to be multi-taskers. Everyone has this key phrase on their resume, demonstrating their ability to juggle multiple things at once and while this may be beneficial in some circumstances, it is not conducive to productive daily workflow.

Studies have shown that multitasking actually damages our brains, causing more stress and leading to cognitive overload and therefore, less productivity. I've also found, from personal experience, that attempting to do more than one thing at a time leads to more mistakes being made in the tasks I'm trying to complete. One Forbes article goes as far as claiming that multitasking can lower your IQ, so do yourself a favor and let your brain focus on one task at a time. You'll be more productive and you won't stress your brain out as much!

I'm a list girl. I always have been. From the time I was in junior high, I've had a running list of everything I want to accomplish, both long- and short-term goals, and they were color-coded according to the importance of each task. I will also admit, I get very overwhelmed when I have a long to-do list lurking on the side of my desk. I spend more time focusing on my list than actually accomplishing anything that's on it! Since then, I've learned a secret to a successful to-do list: shorter is better.

Each day, make a short list of the tasks you need to complete that day, placing the most important (or stress-inducing) task at the very top. By tackling that big assignment early in your day, you'll be increasing your momentum, making all smaller tasks seem easy in comparison and you won't spend your day stressing over that list. 

This one's not rocket science. You've all experienced it at one time or another - you're trying to get something done, but you have to stop every time your phone chimes to respond to an email. reply to a tweet or return a text message. Distractions make us less productive. Period.

If you want to be more productive, turn your phone on silent mode. Schedule little blocks of time during your workday to check and respond to emails and do not get sucked down the social media black hole until after you've accomplished what you need to. Even distractions like the television being on or having too many windows open in your internet browser are inhibiting you from being as productive as you can be, so get rid of them. Your brain will thank you.

» Related article: 12 Habits That Are Making You Less Productive

What is something you do to be more productive? Have you ever tried any of the above tips? If so, how did they work for you?

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