Having a productive day, believe it or not, begins with the things you do the night before and your ability to remain focused. I work a 9 – 5 and operate two side companies. So you can imagine how hectic my schedule can get at a moments notice. To keep it all together, I normally plan my day’s the night before. I grab me a hot cup of tea and get to jotting down my goals and task for the following day or even week. Breaking my day down into 15 – 30 minute blocks. Below I have provided you three of my best tips to help you have a more productive work day.
1. Plan your day the night before:
It may sound simple and maybe even mediocre, but it is the easiest and most productive way to have an effective work day. Carving out 30 minutes to 1 hour the night before can really boost your productivity. Things won’t always go the way you plan, but to have direction will keep you on track. Once the kids are sleep and the spouse in tucked away, this is the time for you to reflect.
- Writing out all your goals and tasks the night before is critical. Normally between 9pm – 10pm is when I start planning out my following day. I split up my task into Personal Task, Employee Task for my job, and Business Tasks for my Side Business. People who say they don’t have enough time in the day are people who don’t plan. It’s true that you can run out of hours, but if you know how to delegate some tasks, you can get so much more done. Check out Laura Vanderkam’s Book “168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think”. This book literally changed my perception on time and how I’m really supposed to be using it.
- Spend 10 to 15 minutes meditating or dreaming about what it is that you really want to accomplish the next day. Clear your mind before you go to bed so that you’re not worrying. I find it very hard to get a good nights sleep when I have a lot on my mind. One trick I use if I find myself not able to let go of all my thoughts is to write them down on a piece of paper and just let it flow.
2. Exercise early in the morning:
Get the juices flowing. I’ve never had a bad day after working out early in the morning. If you’ve never exercised before going to work, I’m mandating that you do it tomorrow morning when you get up. My morning normally starts with a bottle of water and a morning jog or trip to the gym.
My tips to help. Plan 1 hour early in the morning to workout. Preferably at 6:00am or earlier. Not many people are up at this time to bother you and you can get a peaceful workout in. Also, to be up before everyone gives you a competitive advantage. Keep a water bottle near your bed along with your workout clothes, so it’s not a hassle to find things you need when you wake up in the morning. Get the juices flowing and no one can ruin your day. I sure you can relate to those chaotic mornings where you wake up just in time to be late for work. Those mornings are no fun.
3. Say NO:
Say no to the non-productive task. When you’re in the middle of an important task and someone walks up to you to ask you to do something not important, say no. If it doesn’t affect your income or family then I don’t consider it important. It can wait. Don’t let someone else’s emergencies become yours.
Checking your emails 5 different times within 30 minutes is definitely not productive.
Checking Facebook every 5 mins is not productive either.
Say no to the nonproductive co-workers. We all have these folks around. The ones that will eat up 1 hour of your work time with reasons as to why they hate that job, or how the manager sucks at managing. etc… These type of people are potent to your productivity. They may be great people to hang around but they will kill your time because they don’t have any goals of their own.
Say no to nonproductive conversations. Even down to your managers, they can keep you tangled up in a nonproductive conversation. Repeating the same things over and over just to make themselves feel as though they are getting through to you.
Sometimes you have to tell yourself no to that non-productive task.
I hope these tips were very helpful. If you have any tips for being more productive at work, please let us hear it. Drop comments below.