If you’re like most people, you probably have a love-hate relationship with productivity.
On one hand, you know that being productive can help you achieve your goals and improve your life. On the other hand, actually being productive is often easier said than done. The good news is that there are some simple things you can do to adopt a more productive mindset. Here are five of them:
1. Get rid of distractions
One of the biggest enemies of productivity is distraction. It might be a co-worker who stops by your desk to chat. Maybe it’s notifications from your phone, or even just daydreaming, distractions can quickly derail your focus and set you back.
Create a distraction-free environment for yourself. This way, you can stay focused on your work and get it done more quickly.
Another productivity killer is procrastination. When you have a task that you’re dreading, it can be tempting to put it off until later. But the longer you wait, the more anxious you’ll feel about it. And that anxiety will only make it harder to get started.
To avoid procrastination, try breaking the task down into smaller steps that you can complete quickly. For example, if you’re writing a report, start by brainstorming ideas, then move on to research, and finally start writing the actual document. By taking small steps, you can make progress on the task without feeling overwhelmed.
It’s hard to focus on your work when there are so many distractions around you.
Every time you get a notification, it takes about 23 minutes to get back into the flow of your work. Multiply that by the number of notifications you get each day, and you’re losing a lot of time.
“It’s not necessarily the distraction itself, which, arguably, isn’t such a terrible thing but the post-distraction period that’s the real issue here.” via Takes 30 Minutes to Refocus
Get rid of distractions to increase your productivity by using these methods. Turn off notifications and setting up a “Do Not Disturb” sign. Then put away anything that might tempt you to take a break from work.
2. Set realistic goals
It’s important to set goals for yourself, but it’s just as important to make sure those goals are realistic. If your goals are too ambitious, you’re likely to get discouraged when you don’t meet them. On the other hand, if your goals are too small, you may not feel motivated to put in the work needed to achieve them. Find a happy medium by setting goals that are challenging but achievable.
Ambitious goals can be incredibly motivating, but they can also be discouraging if you don’t meet them.
Most people give up on their goals because they’re too ambitious and they get discouraged when they don’t meet them.
Set realistic goals that are still challenging, but not impossible. When you achieve your smaller goals, you’ll feel more motivated to keep going and work towards your larger goal.
3. Create a routine
When it comes to productivity, routines are key. Having set times for when you’ll work on specific tasks can help you stay on track and get more done. If you have a report to write by the end of the day, set aside an hour or two in the morning to work on it uninterrupted. Once you have a routine in place, stick to it as much as possible—even on days when you don’t feel like being productive.
You know that you need to be productive, but it’s hard to get started.
It can be tough to get motivated and get started on your work. Procrastination sets in, and suddenly the day is over and you haven’t accomplished anything.
Creating a routine can help you overcome this obstacle. By setting aside specific times for certain tasks, you can train your brain to automatically start working on those things at those times. By using a productivity tool like Evernote, you can make sure that all of your important notes and ideas are always with you when you need them.
4. Take breaks
It may seem illogical, but taking breaks can actually help improve your productivity. Stepping away from your work every so often will help you avoid burnout. You’ll come back feeling refreshed and ready to tackle whatever tasks are left on your list.
When you do take a break, make sure it’s truly a break. No checking work email or taking calls from clients. Instead, use your break time to do something calming like reading or going for a walk outside.
You’ve been working for hours on end, and you’re starting to feel tired. You know if you don’t take a break soon, you’ll start making mistakes.
Imagine taking a quick break from your work every so often will help keep your mind fresh and focused. Taking breaks is proven to reduce stress and increase productivity.
Take short breaks throughout the day to refresh yourself and avoid burnout! It’s easy with an app like Focus Keeper – Time Management that reminds you when it’s time for a break!
5. Practice self-compassion
Beating yourself up when you don’t meet your goals is not only unproductive – it’s also harmful to your mental health. Instead of berating yourself for every little thing, try practicing self-compassion instead. Cut yourself some slack and remember that everyone makes mistakes sometimes.
Celebrate your successes, no matter how small they may be, and use setbacks as an opportunity to learn and grow.
You are your own worst enemy. The next time you feel like giving up take a breath. Then ask yourself if it’s really worth quitting altogether or just trying again with some new strategy?
Productivity doesn’t have to be a struggle. Equipped with the right mindset shift gears and start looking at productivity in a positive light. Adopt some of these helpful mindset changes today!
Start by implementing one or two new habits at a time until they become second nature. Once you have mastered those, move on to the next ones until you have achieved all of your goals!