11 Ways to Be More Productive
Don’t we all want to feel like productive members of society? Don’t we all want to feel useful? But somehow, at the end of the day we end up feeling like we did a lot and and yet, accomplished nothing. Today we will change all that. We will adjust our days so that our productivity levels increase, and so at the end of the day we can feel like we are going somewhere.
The way you start your mornings can significantly affect the day’s productivity. So start your day productively so the day continues the same way.
Focus yourself first thing in the morning
Don’t check your phone or your email as soon as you get up. Give thanks for another new day, meditate on the day ahead of you and how you will deal with the challenges that will inevitably come up. Dedicate this time to hear your body, to clear your head so that you can start each new day with a new, fresh mind.
Benefits of cold water
Showering with cold water or splashing cold water in your face helps you start your day right. Cold water strengthens your immune system, improves blood circulations and keeps you alert.
Warm water relaxes you and gets your body ready for bed. So make sure your morning shower at least ends with a splash of cold water. But if you're brave enough just shower with cold water and enjoy the benefits throughout the day.
Don't head for the coffee right away
Instead of reaching for that cup of joe first thing in the morning, get your blood flowing with some simple stretching. Don’t worry, it doesn’t have to be anything complicated. Start by stretching your arms, then your legs, try to touch your toes. Does whatever kind of stretching that feels good to your body.
Once your blood starts flowing through every part of your body again, you will feel much more alert.
Wash your face with cold water on your face, or better yet, take a cold shower. Cold water improves blood circulation, strengthens the immune system, energizes you and makes you feel more alert. Sometimes a cold shower is all we need to be productive and face the day’s challenges.
Have a good breakfast
You wouldn’t think of fueling your car with trash, would you? Of course not, so why would we fuel our bodies with junk food???? Give your body the fuel it needs and it will reward you with giving you enough energies to be productive throughout the day.
Here are some ideas:
Fresh, green smoothie:
Blend your favorite leafy greens (spinach, spring mix, kale, etc..), your favorite fruits and a little bit of water for a delicious smoothie that will keep you going better than the energizer bunny.
Blend banana, oatmeal, flax seed, hemp seed, peanut butter and almond milk. This smoothie will keep you satisified all throughout the morning.
Stay away from the television
Did you know that TV can be one of the greatest production inhibitors known to humanity today? Therefore, don’t turn on the tv. This is especially important during your morning routine. Some people get ready for work or school with the TV on. This sucks a lot of time out of your routine and puts your brain in “no-thinking” mode. Just by avoiding TV in the morning you can avoid feeling sluggish throughout the day.
Best To-Do Apps for Smartphones
- Do it tomorrow (free)
- Agenda Calendar 4 ($1.99)
- Any.do (free)
- Todoist (free or $29/year)
- Task ($.99)
- Clear ($4.99)
Keep a to-do list
Keep and update your to-do list daily. Look at this list before leaving your house so that you can mentally prepare for what’s ahead and so you won’t forget to do anything important. Phone apps such as do it tomorrow or Agenda Calendar 4 can be really useful in your quest to stay productive. If you don’t have a smartphone, then just stick to good ol’ pen and paper. I carry a small notebook in my purse at all times, that way I can constantly see and update what I need to do without the distraction of a smart phone.
Take small and frequent breaks
You don’t have to be in constant activity to be productive. In fact, activity does not necessarily mean productivity. It has been shown that productivity increases when you takes 15-20 minutes breaks for every 2 hours of work. Why? Because by taking breaks you allow your brain to relax and de-stress. A relaxed and rested brain is a lot more productive than a tense one.
By clearly defining your goals you will be able to track your progress as well as your productivity. If you don’t have goals, then it will be hard to know exactly what productive means. Also, keep in mind that without goals it is very easy to get distracted. Focus on your goals and find the motivation you need to keep you productive.
Schedule time for repetitive tasks
There are certain tasks in life than don’t really require your full brain capacity. Tasks such as checking your personal email or your electronic social life should have a scheduled time, and you should stick to that schedule.
Sometimes, if we don’t have a schedule for it, we end up checking our facebook account all throughout the day, and that takes away time.
Set your phone so that it won’t push the alerts you get from facebook, twitter or personal email accounts. Don’t let your phone dictate when you’re supposed to check these things. Check them on the time you have scheduled for it and be done with it as soon as that time is over.
Schedule time for recreation
What kind of life would it be if you didn’t give yourself a time to breathe? Your body and mind needs recreation time so that they can give you their full capacity when you need it.
Learn to focus and learn to lose focus
It’s not enough to know how to focus. Learning how to lose focus on command is equally important. Lose focus of the least important things. If you’re playing a really addicting game when you know you should be studying or working, then lose focus of the game and focus on what you should be doing. If you’re at work, focus on work. If you’re spouse is talking to you, focus on what they’re saying. Focus on the present moment and you’ll see your productivity take off!
Remember, life is full of wonderful things. Don’t spend time on things that are not worth it. Set your goals straight and go for them every morning.
More on being Productive
- 21 Tips to Become the Most Productive Person You Know | Robin Sharma's Blog
We live in an age of dramatic distraction. Robin Sharma shares 21 tips to help you become a productivity powerhouse so you can get big things done and make your life matter.
- Eight Apps to Make You More Productive - Harvard Business Review
Business management magazine, blogs, case studies, articles, books, and webinars from Harvard Business Review, addressing today's topics and challenges in business management.
- How To Be More Productive: Four Simple Ideas - Forbes
You could get far more done, and be more effective, if you worked (even more) through other people. Here's how to overscome your (natural) reluctance to do so.
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