5 Time-Tested Ways of Improving Your Personal Productivity
We all want more time to do more of what we really want or to just get through all we have to, so how do you increase your productivity? There is no quick pill to create more hours in your day. It is up to you to change the bad habits for ones that will create benefits in your life. How often are you stressed because of time? Being stressed, overwhelmed and frustrated often jeopardizes your health and your work! Besides creating more hours in the day, you will be far happier and healthier by applying these time management tips to your life.
1. Don´t procrastinate with your time, develop the habit of ¨do it now¨.
Procrastination is one of the things that if not managed well can really steal hours of your day. Those who are successful in their lives, will tell you that many times, they did not want to do ¨something¨, however, discipline overrides feelings and they do things they don’t want to because they have to. These are success skills that will set you apart from the rest regarding your time-management. You need to put results before comfort if you want to really move forward with your time.
2. Question how you spend your time
We all have 24 hours in a day, so do all the famous and successful people. Nobody is different. However some of us never really get a grip on managing our time, my question would be ¨what exactly do you choose to spend your time on?¨ I use the word choose because it is a choice. Start by using a time log over at least three days and record in the log exactly how you are spending your time every day. From the moment you wake up, at work, include the coffee breaks, time spent on the internet, everything! Reflect back on the time log and you will clearly be able to see exactly how and where you are wasting your time. This exercise can be one of the most shocking realizations for many.
3. Are you always putting out fires?
Don’t always spend time on urgent and important tasks. You need to make time for the tasks that are not urgent but important. These normally relate to your long term goals, and to really get ahead, you need to prioritize how you spend your day. It is no good just selecting a few items from your To Do List or out of your head. You need to decide what tasks are urgent and important, schedule this in to your day and also at least one task that is not urgent but important, do this and you will see how you move closer to your goals much faster.
4. Take advantage of travel, commute time and waiting time
Depending on your work or how far you live from work, you may be spending up to two hours a day travelling. What can you do with those two hours? Looking at the scope of your work, are there any tasks that require reading, perhaps while travelling on the tube, train or waiting? What about listening while driving? Get creative. Most of the information nowadays can be easily converted into any format. 2 hours a day travelling adds up to 10hours a week, that’s a full working day for most! Use your time productively it and you will feel less stressed and more productive.
5. Have meetings only when they are absolutely necessary and optimize them
Meetings really take up a lot of time and unless they will bring back a return on your investment in your time, try to avoid attending meetings when you don´t really need to there. Respect your time and only hold meetings when the communication will be undermined or it is not possible without being face to face. Ensure the right people are at the meetings, an agenda is sent before so everyone is clear on the objectives and can prepare. Start and finish meetings on time and appoint a time keeper, a minute taker and a chairperson to keep the meeting productive.
How are you going to motivate yourself to change and how will you keep motivating yourself in moments of hesitation? This is the real question you need to ask yourself. If you feel that you really need support to implement these ideas, partner with a Productivity coach who will support you in learning the time management skills that will free up hours a week and support you in your personal growth to make sustainable changes.
Kirstin O´Donovan, Productivity Coach – Want 7 Simple Strategies to Triple Your Productivity? – Free Access to E-Course – www.topresultscoaching.com