5 tips to be a more productive person
Last modified: 2019/08/06 | Approximate reading time 4 mins
In our current economy, sometimes it feels as if there aren’t enough hours in a day. Trying to perform tasks at maximum efficiency and complete everything successfully can be daunting. You might know that one highly productive person who always seems able to get everything done, you could be wondering “how can I be more like them?” Well, if you’re asking this question you’ve come to the right place.
If you’re curious about how to be more productive and finish tasks at lightning speed, or at least before the deadline approaches, we’re here to help. In this article, we’ll look at ways you can maximize your time, be more efficient and boost your productivity on a day to day basis.
5 tips to be a more productive person
Overcoming daily challenges: where to begin
Let’s start by looking at some common places where our productivity may falter. In pointing out these common areas and studying challenges we all experience, it’ll help you find problem areas in your own life that can be tweaked, tailored and eventually, overcome.
Procrastination: Many struggle to find concrete ways to overcome procrastination, allowing tasks both large and small to falter past deadlines.
Boredom: Depending on the task at hand or the job, work can be boring. For some, this boredom can lead to a lack of productivity that seems impossible to overcome.
Email responses: No matter which way you look at it, responding to emails is time-consuming. For some, this task can be stress-inducing.
Motivation: Staying motivated at work can be quite a challenge. Depending on what you’re struggling with, whether that’s lack of sleep, exhaustion or a general sense of ennui, this is an issue that many confront on a daily basis.
1- Complete important tasks first
When you plan out your day, week, month or year, it’s normal for there to be certain priorities that are more important or pressing than others. Working through a to-do list in a strategic way can offer a structure that allows you to get things done, and this can help you be more productive in the long run. This is because it’s simple to spend an entire day checking off the easy tasks on a to-do list and leaving the more difficult ones for later. This method leads to serious procrastination.
Try choosing between 1-3 of your most important tasks at the start of the day, especially those which need to be finished by the end of the day. Focusing on the most important tasks will help you to make sure the most important things
2- Set small goals
For some, the scope of larger tasks may seem too great and thus, will feel overwhelming to approach. This is a common cause of procrastination and often leads to a lack of productivity. A helpful way to approach larger tasks and make sure they’re completed is to break them down and set small, attainable goals as they relate to the larger goal.
Think about it and ask yourself: what exactly is needed to complete or accomplish the task? Set out a timeline that details each of the steps and how long it may take to complete them. Gaining an understanding of the scope of each of the smaller tasks or goals at hand while putting the steps in place and make even the biggest task seem completely manageable.
3- Track time and identify work patterns
It’s likely you’ve heard the old saying there’s not enough time in a single day. Almost every person on the planet struggles with making the best use of the time allotted to them. One way to truly understand how you’re using your time and where all those hours are going is to track it. Not only this but tracking your time will allow you to take stock of the hours of the day that are most productive for you as well as the hours which are not your best.
Pay attention to big-time wasters such as how long you sit on social media and your favourite websites, or how much time you spend responding to emails. Of course, if these tasks are necessary for your job, consider strategies that could make them more efficient. Tracking your time can help you to arrange things so that you’ll have a better sense of the amount of time needed for things.
This can lead to a better estimation of how you can better estimate when goals will be completed. In relation to areas where you underperform or are less productive, find ways to spin, repurpose or work around them.
4- Take breaks
Many people avoid taking breaks in order to try and maximize productivity. Unfortunately, this method is detrimental to both health and productivity. Working and maintaining focus for 8 hours straight is impossible, and no matter how efficient you believe you’re being, taking breaks will improve overall productivity.
Even breaks that are only a few minutes long can help you to momentarily recharge and keep working. When you do take breaks, make sure they’re deliberate. This can be done by scheduling them ahead of time so that you know when they’re coming.
5- Automate and eliminate
Finally, it’s crucial to find ways to take on your workload. With the advances of modern technology, there are plenty of tools to help you automate certain tasks and eliminate others. As we mentioned, email can be a serious distraction and a huge time waster. There’s plenty of value in reducing this distraction and finding ways to automate replies or filter emails so that the most pressing are answered and the others left alone.
If this isn't possible, we’d suggest responding to emails only during certain hours and keeping your inbox minimized. When you are composing emails, make sure the information is sufficient and valuable. This will allow you to avoid hours of back and forth.
In other areas of your work, find tools which will allow you to automate tasks. This could mean learning the shortcuts on your keyboard, automating daily tasks, putting together procedurals for common tasks, delegating where necessary and so forth.