As a woman, we have millions of things to do, and sometimes it feels like your day should have a few more hours. Here are some productivity tips for increasing your efficiency.
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Write down your time usage
Before proceeding, it is important to know how you spend your time. Tracking your time will help you a lot in controlling your distractions. It is like budgeting and saving money from wherever you can because you have limited money. Here the limited commodity is the time.
Please do this for a few days and analyze where you spend most of your time. And then check out the tasks where you spend most of the time but is not necessary or you are wasting your precious time o those tasks. It will be easy for you to understand how you can increase your productivity and do more in less time. Everything else will come after this. Prepare some plans to eliminate all those tasks and be productive.
Productivity tips to increase efficiency
1. Eliminate distractions
It is impossible to be productive when your mind is wandering here and there. And this is the time when distractions are at their peak.
We have digital gadgets and phones always beeping around us which makes it impossible to focus on the most important things. This always let you deplete productivity. To combat this, eliminate the distractions which can hamper your productivity.
2. Control your impulse
This one is very difficult to control. It is easy to control distractions when you are in the workplace, but when you are working from home, it is nearly impossible to control the impulses because you have all the time work. Instead, control the impulse to put your TV on, or checking the social media. For me checking emails is very difficult to control habit,.
3. Stop multitasking
Multitasking is believed to be important and it feels like you are more productive but actually, it is the opposite. When you are multitasking, you are wasting a lot of time because your brain takes some time to adjust to the new task. If you go on doing the same task for a longer period of time, it will be easy for your mind to focus.
4. Keep a specific time for checking social media
Social media is, in fact, very addictive. Not only it is harmful for your mental and physical health, it depletes productivity. This is the reason it is important to not touch social media until you have accomplished your tasks.
Keep it as a special reward for yourself. Keep a fixed time for checking social media and go on working on your most important tasks. You will feel happy as you have accomplished a lot and now this is your reward for all the hard work.
If you want you can also cut your self from Social Media
Social Media engaging. It entertains you with funny pictures, funny posts, and messages from friends. Open any Social Media platform, stare at the screen for 5 minutes. When you come into senses, you would already have spent an hour doing nothing.
If you want to keep yourself motivated to do the pesky tasks, keep social media usage minimum. For this, save time in a day when you will check the exciting matter ( social media). For me, it is at night. Set aside sometime when you will check it.
You can read a beautiful post from Nicole Stone which talks about being productive while working from home.
♦ Set a timer for the time you will engage on social media platforms. You will save time and will accomplish more.
5. Check email at a specific time
Checking email at a specific time can be the best productivity tip. Most of us check emails several times a day. I am the biggest example of this. And most of my emails are from shopping sites. After clicking on the email, I go to shopping sites, and then you can judge yourself, how much time I waste there. To save yourself from this time wastage, keep a specific time for checking emails.
6. Keep your to-do list small
This is a no-brainer when you have a bog to-do list, you feel overwhelmed, and if you cannot accomplish the task, you feel annoyed at yourself. To keep this away, keep your to-do list small. It will help you to have the mindset of accomplishment. Because when you mark a tick on your to-do list, it gives a sense of accomplishment, and you feel like you have accomplished a lot.
8. Plan your day a night before
When you wake up and sit for your work, do you feel overwhelmed about what you should do? Why not plan your day a night before. It will help you in saving time, and you will be able to start working on it. I write down two tasks and stick it to my laptop. This way, it is always easy for me to focus on the most essential things in the morning. After accomplishing at least two tasks, you are always in a better position to take on other tasks.
9. Take a break after 35 to 40 minutes.
Breaks are an integral part of our working schedules. Naturally, your brain starts feeling sluggish after some time. For optimum working, the brain needs to become energized again.
You can take a short break and drink some water. Hydration is so important for your brain and body. Also, take your lunch breaks and tea breaks properly. Don’t eat while working. It will help you a lot in increasing your efficiency.
10. Work consistently
Do you remember Newton’s law of motion, A body at rest will remain at rest and a body in motion will remain in motion unless acted upon by an external force. If we apply this to or regular daily routines, it will explain very precisely, why we need to work consistently. Even if it is for one hour or 2 hours, work should not be interrupted except for the breaks.
Once you have started working on something, the momentum of working will let you accomplish a lot. When the momentum is lost, you will feel sluggish, and then it will be difficult for you to focus again on the task at hand.
11. Master time management
Time management is life management. Yes, of course, you will be able to do many things if you manage your time well. You will accomplish important tasks on time, have some time for your hobbies, for your family for vacations, and taking care of your health.
Always schedule your work and give a time frame to your tasks. It will help you build a routine where you have fewer distractions. Your mind will be automatically more inclined to accomplish the task. Start your next task after accomplishing the first one in the set time.
12. Use the Promodoro technique
This another great person, Frensesco Cirillo created the Promodro technique in the late 1980s to make your time more productive. This technique urges to use of blocking time for work. Or do your work in small intervals of time.
According to the Promodoro technique, our mind can focus on one thing for 25 minutes and our attention starts to wander after that. So it is important to take a break after 25 – 30 minutes. Set a timer for 15 minutes and work on one task. Multitasking for these 25 or 30 minutes will make you overwhelmed.
After 25 minutes, you would have accomplished a task. It means you are one step nearer to your goal. Feel happy about it. Take a 5-minute break and then gain set a timer for 25 minutes. Start working on one more task.
Again start the same pattern. Have a look at your progress after one hour. Hey, you have accomplished a lot. Take a coffee/snack/tea or any break which you love. For me, it is a tea break. This activity is simple but one of the most effective productivity tips I have come across.
12. Hide your phone somewhere
Tech gadgets waste our lot of time and phones are the number one. Smartphones have changed the way we live. We check everything on phones and we have become so accustomed to our phones that they have become an integral part of our daily routines.
There is no doubt that they are an essential part of or lives but they are the biggest distractions and time-wasters too. To save yourself from this, hide your phone somewhere and keep at a place where you have to especially go to pick the phone. If the phone will be near you, it will be difficult to control the impulse to check the notifications.
13. Set a morning routine
Mornings set a tone for your day. Start your morning in a way that helps you in having a productive day. Don’t check your phone on waking up. Because once you will check your phone, it will be difficult to put it away.
I have to keep my phone hidden always due to my daughter, which has helped me in breaking the habit of checking the phone constantly. As soon as I wake up, I have to hide my phone. This saves me a lot of time.
14. Use Eisenhower Matrix
You may be familiar with the Eisenhower matrix. It is developed by Dwight D. Eisenhower, the 34th President of the United States. He is said to be the most accomplished President of the United States till today. He was able to accomplish a lot in his lifetime.
You can read more about this here.
After having your to-do list, prioritize your tasks. This should be your second list. Write down the most important tasks at the top. The tasks which are important as well as urgent but not so pleasant should be on the top of the list. Here remember ‘The frog theory’ by Mark Twain.
When you have completed your most important task, it will not haunt you in the day and there will be a sense of accomplishment that will let you accomplish more.
Here use the Eisenhower Matrix for your tasks.
According to Eisenhower matrix, divide your tasks into four quadrants
- Urgent and important ( the most important tasks
- Urgent but not important
- Important but not urgent
- Neither urgent nor important ( totally delete these tasks )
What an incredible person Dwight Eisenhower was. He was the 34th president of America. He is said to have accomplished a lot in his life and got time for his passions too.
This Eisenhower matrix is really important and helpful if you want to make your self more productive.
15. Learn to say no
If you will say yes to anybody and everybody, it will be very difficult for you to focus on the critical things in life, so it is better to say no when you have important tasks to do.
If you want to be productive and want to set and slay goals for each area of your life, Use this 60 page printable planner to plan your goals. It is really important to set your goals with intentions and crush them.
Planning and little changes in your working schedule will help you in being productive again.