Your time is precious, and there are only so many hours in the day in which to get everything done. It can often feel like there just isn’t enough time conversion to get everything done.
In the worst case, this can end up leading to longer hours, overtime, and sleepless nights. Now I don’t know about you, but that doesn’t exactly sound like the best use of anyone’s time.
The best solution is to make sure that your working smarter. And the most efficient way to do that is to manage your time more effectively.
Learning how to manage your time isn’t especially complicated, but it does involve making a deliberate effort. You need to focus your energy in more productive directions and train yourself to avoid distractions.
Here are some easy and simple ways to increase your productivity at work and avoid feeling like you’re running out of time.
When you’re buried under a pile of work and deadlines, it can be tempting to try and work on a bunch of different tasks at any one time.
If you work on twice as many things as once, you get twice as much done! It makes sense right? Well, not quite. In fact, the exact opposite tends to be true.
Your ability to multitask might be a point of pride, but there’s a chance it’s wasting more time than it’s saving.
By stretching your attention across lots of different places, you’re not focusing on any one of them. Instead, you’re spread too thin and end up getting more easily distracted and wasting time. It’s not just a matter of time either.
Trying to get a lot of different things done all at once often means that you end up doing a half-hearted job of things.
You’re much better served getting used to focusing on single tasks and completing them efficiently and to the best of your ability.
There’s an old saying that goes…
“Failing to plan is planning to fail.”
It might be a cliche, but it’s one with more than a grain of truth to it. You might be the type to wing it throughout the day, flying by the seat of your pants from one task to the other.
But in the end, this kind of working method is just going to wear you out and waste your precious time. Make sure your routine is clear and set, and that you follow it.
Set out which tasks you’re doing throughout the day and in what order. Prioritize tasks throughout the week as well. The more you plan, the more ready you are to face any challenges that appear.
If you’re working in management or running a business that’s doubly important. You have to make sure that not only yourself but your employees are well organized.
Rostering software is an excellent way to keep your business running smoothly and will help you avoid losing track of valuable time.
#3 Take Breaks
This might sound like the most counter-intuitive thing in the world but, believe me, it works.
Nothing ends up being a bigger waste of time than trying to force your way through a problem when stress is causing a mental block.
You’d have better luck trying to headbutt your way through a brick wall. By taking short, regular breaks, you’re able to recharge your batteries, refresh your mind, and return to the problem with a new perspective.
Your performance while tackling a long, difficult task will stay much more consistent too. What you do in these breaks can make a lot of difference as well.
Don’t just sit on your phone the whole time. Get up and stretch or go for a walk. Getting your blood pumping on your break is a great way to refresh yourself and improve your focus.
It’s also a good idea to just take some time to relax. Small amounts of meditation and quiet can work wonders for clearing your head and helping improve your concentration.
Even if it’s for as short an amount of time as it takes to brew a cup of tea, it can make all the difference.
#4 Learn to Say No
This one might be the simplest but most difficult thing to do.
Learn to say no.
You don’t have to attend every single meeting you’re invited to or do that favor for every single colleague. If you have a set of tasks you need to achieve, then you should be able to say no to extra tasks.
Taking on more than you can manage will just lead to stress, distractions, and half-finished workloads. It’s much better just to focus on what you’re doing and not to worry about everyone else all the time.
So what are you to be more productive at work? What have you tried that hasn’t worked? Share your thoughts below.