The term "productive" can be interpreted in many ways, but it's most commonly associated with a person who's able to complete a large amount of tasks in short amount of time. In general, this is what many people strive to be. While it's a good trait to have, a wrong approach to it can have a completely opposite effect. In order to avoid unnecessary setbacks, read on and discover four tried-and-tested ways that will put you on the right track towards increased productivity.
1. Take Regular Breaks
Everyone has experienced that well-known burst of motivation and enthusiasm that just makes us want to dive in and do something productive. We close our doors, eliminate all distractions and decide to work continuously until everything is finished. However, one crucial part of the whole process is left out - frequent breaks.
Although it might seem counterproductive, scientists say that resting our brains between certain working intervals can help us complete more tasks in the long run. Ideally, after every hour of work time, give or take, there should be a 15-minute break. This is due to the nature of the human brain, which even though it's built to work intensely, also needs some time to rest and renew. Ignoring this for longer stretches of time can lead to bad decision making and stress - ultimately causing the brain to grow more fatigued. Breaks help us refresh and restore our motivation, especially in the face of more difficult challenges.
The way you rest is also quite important. During a break, you should completely disconnect from what you were doing previously. Try not to think about anything - instead, go for a walk, make some coffee or do a breathing exercise.
2. Avoid Multitasking
Focus is one of the most powerful tools for productivity - not multitasking. Trying to write a book, answer e-mails and scroll through social media posts at the same time is one of the worst things that you could possibly do. At the end, all you have is half-done work and not a single fully completed task. To avoid that, try to make a mental note of your largest distractions such as a smartphone, tablet, laptop, TV and turn them all off. Fully commit yourself to that which you already started and see it through to completion.
To avoid worrying about time management, you can take advantage of apps such as RescueTime and Timeular. Through their specialized analytics tools, you can see exactly where most of your time is spent, as well as notice the extent to which the distractions affect you. In addition, they also come with automatic time-tracking and distraction blocking utilities.
3. Make Plans The Night Before
Prior to going to bed each night, make a habit of writing down five most important things that you want to get done once you wake up. It sounds simple - and it is - but having a to-do list can help motivate you to start working early on. When you wake up feeling refreshed, it's in your best interest to first do the most complex task, which is more likely to happen when you already have it written. Planning in advance is also crucial if you want to establish a healthy routine, and it can even help you fall asleep easier.
4. Automate Your Work
The phrase "work smarter, not harder" essentially means that you shouldn't focus your energy on things that can be done without a lot of effort In today's world, this is closely related to automation. With computers getting smarter each day, there's no reason not to use them to our advantage. For example, if you frequently get ideas that you have to write down, it can take up a lot of your time. Instead, it's a lot better to record all of your thoughts and convert them afterwards - with the use of one simple tool.
Audext is an audio to text converter that can help transfer your spoken thoughts onto a digital piece of paper. Instead of multitasking and going back-and-forth through your files, you can simply upload the recording to Audext which will provide you with a result in a matter of seconds using its AI-based speech recognition algorithms. Since it works fully online, you won't even have to worry about leaving your task on standby to use the tool. This will help you keep your full focus on what you're currently doing, especially since Audext doesn't require any human input once it starts processing. With Audext you can transcribe one hour of audio in a few minutes. When the result is ready, you can modify it using Audext's built-in editor in between your working intervals.
Being productive is not easy - it requires a lot of patience and willpower. However, you can make this process as painless as possible by utilizing the four tips mentioned above. Find your ideal combination, be consistent and the results will come by themselves.
He has been working on the Internet since 1994 (practically a mummy), specializing in Web technologies makes his customers happy by juggling large scale and high availability applications, php and js frameworks, web design, data exchange, security, e-commerce, database and server administration, ethical hacking. He happily lives with @salvietta150x40, in his (little) free time he tries to tame a little wild dwarf with a passion for stars.
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