Imagine finishing your workday with a smile on your face, knowing that you have accomplished everything you planned for that day. Knowing as well that you were at your best in getting your tasks done more efficiently and productively. Yes, that feeling is extraordinary and you can be the lead role in that movie about productivity. There is an alternative version of the movie as well in which you come to the end of your workday stressed about not finishing all your tasks for the day. Furthermore, in this version, you are exhausted and you can barely stand on your feet because of stress and unfinished work.
If the second version of the movie represents your every day at work, you should definitely do something about it. For most people, there are only 2 reasons why they aren’t productive: either they have bad habits that affect their productivity or they are reactive and not proactive so they spend the whole day dealing with newly developed problems.
Luckily for you, there is a solution and it is a pretty simple one. You should replace bad habits with good ones and organize your workday so you could work proactively rather than reactively. The following tips will help you be the best version of yourself at work and will allow you to work smarter and not harder.
Put your phone on silent
If you are not using your phone for work, put it on silent. Scrolling through social media, replying to text messages, emailing and making phone calls is the 4th biggest distraction at work, right behind talking to coworkers, food and bathroom breaks. It can be especially harmful in situations in which you are focused on the task and your phone suddenly vibrates. It immediately gets you sidetracked and out of the focus you previously had. We believe you all experienced that. So put your phone on silent and put it away from your eyesight, it will really make a big difference.
Prepare for the next day
This one is so easy, but yet so powerful. Mornings can be chaotic so instead of preparing for work in a hurry our advice is to prepare yourself for work the night before. For example, you could prepare part of the launch for the next day, you could set up your coffeemaker so when you get up you just need to click the “on” button or you could prepare the clothes you will wear the next day. The point is not to lose time on unimportant things so you could concentrate on the ones you really care about. Even Mark Zuckerberg wears the same shirt design every that so he wouldn’t have to lose time thinking about what to wear.
Take advantage of your commute
It depends how far your offices are, but for most people, a lot of time is wasted on their daily commute to work. Instead of playing Candy Crush or going through your social media feed, you could do some serious work while commuting. There are plenty of mobile apps that can help you send emails, create to-do lists, take notes or even do a little bit of brainstorming. We decided to share with you an interesting interactive infographic created by developers of Cometdocs apps. It will show you what traditional office equipment can be completely replaced with corresponding mobile apps so you can work productively wherever you are. In order to find out what app replaces the selected office element just click on the blue dots that will appear.
Say no to meetings
Have you ever been on a meeting after which you realized that it was a complete waste of time and that your presence wasn’t necessary at all? You would probably be lying if you said no. Meetings are one of the biggest time wasters and yet we still attend them, book them and later complain about them. The average employee usually spends around 30 hours every month attending various meetings. So our advice is to ask yourself before booking the meeting whether you can achieve the same goals via phone call, email or even online meeting (which are at least a little bit productive than the normal ones).
Embrace the “2-minute rule”
It is a simple technique that will help you deal with procrastination. The idea is pretty simple, you should complete every task that shouldn’t take up more than 2 minutes of your time right away instead of leaving it for later. It is believed that by doing small tasks right away could take less time than having to get back to them later. Keep in mind that not implementing the technique the right way could end up taking even more of your precious time.
We believe that these tips will at least get you started and will help you be more productive at your work. We would also love to hear from you, so please let us know about your productivity secrets in the comments below.