14 Simple Ways To Be Productive
For one reason or another, we are always striving to increase our productivity. We want to get as much as possible done in order to get as close as we can to our goal/mission. Yet each and every day continues to be a struggle. Some days are better while others leave us scratching our heads and thinking “what more can I do?” or “am I doing something wrong?”…
The problem is that you are starting on the wrong page and with the wrong question.
Do I set measurable and realistic goals?
If the answer is no. —- that’s okay. It honestly makes sense as to why you searched for an article that can help you be more productive.
Before diving into the article I want to give you some insight on how by you being more productive you can experience positive changes in:
- Experiencing less stress
- Feeling more in control
- Feeling that you have accomplished something each day
- Organized and more prepared
Simple Ways To Be More Productive
1. Become your authentic self.
- When a person takes time to become their authentic self, they are able to connect to living a life of purpose. The ability to wake up to a life that you feel purposefully defines you helps to increase your productivity. Imagine, waking up to your ideal day. You get to do the things you want to do. You get to work the job that makes you smile. This type of lifestyle often increases a person’s productivity due to the person having a strong desire to wake up and engage. For support on becoming your authentic self watch the video below.
2. Make your bed every morning.
- I can feel the stink eye from most of you. Making your bed will give you a very similar satisfaction to that when you enter your office space and see everything clean and organized or when you get home to find your partner has the house spotless. In addition, it will provide you with an increase in your self-esteem, self-management skills, and self-worth. Who doesn’t like getting into a crisp clean bed!
3. Exercise for 15 minutes each day
- Its only 15 minutes. As a therapist, active personal trainer, and fitness enthusiast I can tell you from every angle this works. Exercising continues to be identified as a means of making you feel healthier and better about yourself. You will have a sense of accomplishment prior to 10 am as well as a direct return in your health.
- Not sure what you could do in 15min??? Check out Fitness APPS for your phone; watch the news while you squat and do push-ups; the list goes on.
4. Make a To-Do List
- Creating priorities first thing in the morning greatly structures your day, gives you a sense of worth and value, and supports you with self-management.
5. Dress Professional
- I don’t expect you to put on a suit and tie every day. (If you want to – go for it!). Simply put on some khakis and a button-up. Dressing up and dressing clean has a way of making us feel important, needed, valued, and ready to take on the world.
6. Focus On One Thing At A Time
- Ensure that you are focusing on one item at a time. In today’s world, it can be easy to fall into the trap of multitasking. We often find ourselves watching television while scrolling through our phones. It’s almost natural that we do this. If the goal is to be more productive, try to give yourself a goal. The goal of focus on one task at a time.
7. Ways to focus on one task at a time:
- Watch television and only television.
- Exercise without your headphones.
- Wake up without grabbing your phone.
- Eat and solely focus on the food.
- Have a conversation without looking at your phone.
8. Connect to your purpose
- An insider trick to getting better with productivity is found in identifying your purpose. When you can find an interest or task that truly connects to your core, you’ll notice that focusing on it comes without force. Think about one area of your life that you are truly passionate about. One that connects to your purpose. More than likely you can have a stronger level of focus. The reason is simple. You have a purpose connected to it.
9. Break down task
- Break tasks down as a method to increase productivity. Next time you have a task, consider writing it down. After you have it written down, take a few minutes to divide it into smaller sections. At this point, try to engage with the small sections. This process works to improve productivity and it can be done daily.
10. Work on decision-making skills
- People often struggle with productivity because they are trying to do too many things at once. This is connected to decision-making and how much we are carrying on our to-do list. Try to shift to reducing the number of decisions you are making daily. A great place to go to is your to-do list. See what you can remove and what needs to stay. The overall goal is to reduce the number of decisions that you need to make. Doing this helps to shift your focus on fewer tasks and boost productivity.
11. Focus on wellness
- Spend time working on your mental health. Using a journal is a great tool to give you space to navigate challenging emotional and life challenges. As you tame challenges, such as those connected to depression or anxiety. You’ll notice a reduction in stress and tension. This in turn will lead to feel better and more equipped to handle the day. Before you know it, you’ll see a shift in your productivity.
12. Get to know your distractions
- You have heard of a to-do list. Have you heard of a distraction list? People tend to give it varying definitions. We can keep it simple and use it to write down the items that we should not be working on. Let’s imagine that you are supposed to be doing a presentation project for your work. You then find yourself distracted on social media. You look on your desk and see a sheet of paper that holds the distractions. On the paper is social media. This is your cue to exit the social media page and get back to the work project.
13. Slow down to speed up
- Reflect on your work and life balance. Productivity is directly connected to how you are balancing key domains of your life. Two that we can touch on in this reading include the domains of work and life. Check out the reading, How To Take Time Off From Work For Your Mental Health: https://www.huffpost.com/entry/how-to-take-time-off-work-mental-health_l_5ee247e8c5b69fb03b5c3214
14. Work with a counselor
- Have you thought about starting therapy? You can quickly get on Google and search, a counselor near me. You’ll find a list of counselors that can be of support. Santos Counseling PLLC is available if you would like to explore counseling and see how working with a counselor can help to improve productivity. CLICK HERE to read learn more about the counselors at Santos Counseling PLLC.
FREE tech apps that help you remain organized while boosting your productivity
- This is a family app that comes with a calendar and a to-do list. I use this app for the sole purpose of family productivity. The app allows you to link members of your family into it with each having a different color. Any change or addition you make in the app is seen by your family members who are included in the app. In my Cozi to-do list, I have things like fixing the shelve in the bathroom or cut the grass. These are priorities that are mainly revolved around my personal family life. This app has alerts that you can set with alarms and reminders. I’m a big tech fan so I have an iPhone and iPad. When my alerts go off, I see them pop up on the phone and the iPad. Telling me that “you are not going to miss this”. My wife also receives the alert which definitely keeps me on top of my game!
- This app is 100% dedicated to working. I love this app due to it having two pages, one on the left for “Today” and the other on the right for “Tomorrow”. I like to spend my late evenings right before bed, sitting down and adding my to-do list. You can also put things to do on both sides. For instance, if I know that the item is not super important and it can wait then I will put it in “Tomorrow” versus “Today” I love this. For me it’s almost like a game, I really try to get as much done on the today side so that the tomorrow side is not overly cramped.
- I know that I was only going to mention two, but this one really should be up here. I do not use it as often since switching over to Tomorrow, but I certainly got a lot of success out of it. I love this app because it is smooth and easy. It felt as if I were writing in a notebook. I would honestly still recommend you to use it. The main reason why I switch from Notes to Tomorrow is that the Tomorrow app has an awesome platform of two pages. For me, having two pages keeps things clear while helping me sort through what is important for today and what can wait for tomorrow.
Personal changes I can make to help me be more productive
Treat yourself to whatever it is that you may want. Treating yourself literally means that you find some activity or thing for you. Below are a few examples:
- For parents: Mothers and fathers you may find that treating yourself means a mini-vacation without the kids. Drop your babies off at a relatives or local daycare for a few hours. Go out to a local Starbucks or even a day-spa. When you are there, please do not think about your child. They are okay.
- For 9-5 workers: Use one of those PTO days you have been saving. Or after work do something that you desire to do but are typical “too busy for”. The options are endless. I really want you to find something that will bring a smile and a sense of relief to your face.
- Kids-Tweens- Teens: Give yourself a break from schoolwork. Treat yourself to an hour of video game time or a delicious bowl of ice cream.
- Take a much-needed nap. You are not too old or too busy for a well-deserved nap. Wake up revitalized and focused.
cover images by olu eletu and breather