Productivity? I’ve Heard of It

Lately it feels like I am just tossing 100 balls in the air and seeing which ones I can catch.

Each day I really have to make sure each morning starts with a plan, if not, I’m doomed before I have even had a cup of tea.

Though for all the tools I have (ie phone/computer/notepads/diary) I wish I could centralize all my to do notes. They are scrawled everywhere, on the backs of envelopes, receipts, scrap bits of paper, my hand. For the life of me I cannot use just one device and it hinders me like crazy but I just cant do it. You would never want to go near my handbag, it looks like a waste paper bin.

But I understand there haphazardness.

I’m pretty good at recalling what phone bill or torn bit of paper last weeks phone call was jotted down on, though at some point I really am going to have to smack myself on the wrist, tell myself to snap out of it and really commit to just one central note taking device.

Until then I shall continue to wade through my paper kingdom.

I do find though, that regardless of what I have on for the day or what I need to accomplish if I try my best to stick to these points, I can rest easy at night knowing that I am slowly and surely moving closer to my dreams.

Know what your most important tasks are for the day

If we don’t have goals and priorities, we focus on nothing – we let the things that come up determine how we’ll spend our time.
Some of these important tasks are deadline-driven, but others are more subtle: they are the things that are important to do but that we can ignore because they aren’t urgent. One way to keep these in front of our mind is to think in terms of RESULTS. In other words, if you own your business, these could be the tasks and activities that create sales, or bring in income. If you work for someone else, these are the things that you would be rewarded for with a promotion or a raise – they are the results your employer pays you for.

Work with your body clock

We all have times during the day when we’re more alert and times during the day when we feel tired or with less energy. For most people, the morning is their most productive time of the day, but listen to your own body. Protect your peak time and whenever possible, use it for activities that require thought, courage, or concentration. “Down” times are best for low-value or activities that don’t require much thought – errands, processing emails and mail, and filling out paperwork, for example.

Eliminate or reduce outside interruptions during that focus time

Turn your cell phone off and your email during that time. This one I really struggle with as I  feel they need to be available 24/7 – many times, though, phone calls and emails are simply used as crutches of distraction. So make sure you’re realistic as to how accessible you really need to be – the key is to balance responsiveness with getting the rest of your work done.

I try to check my emails in the morning, if there is anything super important I deal with it straight away otherwise I try and focus on today’s tasks and leave email scanning until after lunch

Relax and remember that the world is not going to end if you dont get everything on your list done.

I really have to work on this one, I constantly think that everything is super important and I am letting myself and others down if I don’t achieve things in record time. The only thing I am actually doing is putting unnecessary stress on myself. At the end of the day no one cares whether you achieve everything you need too. So its important to stop and take a deep breathe and not do anything for 5 mins, chill out, take a walk, get a cup of tea. Remember that life is for living, we should be enjoying each and every day as much as possible. Slow down your breathing, clear your head and become more relaxed and focused for when you begin to tackle things once again.

These points are all a work in progress for me, I continually have to  stop and reevaluate my day as I find it so easy to get carried away.

But I do know that when I try my best to follow my rules, my days run smoother, I tend not to stress so much, I am a better mother, better wife, better business owner and better friend.

I just have to get it happening every day! 🙂


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~ by Sam on July 3, 2012.

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