If you’re like most people, you frequently have more tasks than there are hours in the day to complete them. It’s critical that we find a way to consistently put out a high volume of high-quality work. And since we can’t add more hours to the day, we have a set of strategies we use to get more out of those hours.
Great Ways to Get More Done
We’ve found that the key to productivity is having a strategy and sticking to it. Here are eight tips for getting more done:
- Plan your day. Block out 15 minutes before your workday starts to write down a list of the tasks you will complete today. Be optimistic, but reasonable. Put your highest priority tasks at the top of the list.
- The “New Day 90.” Spend the first 60-90 minutes of your day knocking off as many tasks as you can. Ignore your inbox, voicemails, and reading the headlines — just work. Being able to check the box on some key projects early in the day can eliminate some of your stress and set a positive tone for the rest of the day.
- Take breaks. Your body — in particular your brain — needs periodic breaks throughout your day to rest and recharge. Account for these breaks in your productivity plan. Keep them short, but insist on taking them even if things get hectic. It pays off in the long run.
- Learn how and when to decline work. We all want to do everything we can to help our coworkers and our company succeed. However, taking on more than you can handle is counterproductive. Be sure to say “No” if you are asked to add something to your list but just can’t do it.
- Take care of your body. The advice to get 7-8 hours of sleep, eat well, and exercise regularly doesn’t sound like a productivity tip. However, when your brain and body are rested, fueled, and ready to go, you’ll be surprised at how much more you can get done.
- The “Two Minute Rule.” We all have them… those quick tasks that get sent our way and can easily pile up. As these requests come in, use this standard: if it can be done in two minutes or less, do it now. If it can’t, add it to the productivity plan.
- Leverage productivity tools. There are a wide range of tools available for streamlining and automating tasks. Find the ones that work for you and make them a part of your workflow.
- Keep your desk decluttered. Having a neat, organized work area makes it easier to find what you’re looking for (saving you valuable time) and can help decrease your stress level as well.
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