Sometimes, staying productive can be difficult. Especially in a time where many of us are working from home, distractions are everywhere. Even if you’re working in an office, you likely face interruptions from coworkers, and mundane office tasks take you away from the work you should be doing. So, what’s the solution? How do we stop getting distracted, and instead spend our time being productive? The answer, to develop habits and boundaries that keep us on track. It’s really that simple!
Focus on your most important tasks first. This sounds simple, but many of us are guilty of starting with the smallest tasks, and saving the larger (and most important) tasks for later. We tell ourselves that we’ll get to them later in the day, but as the day goes on we lose motivation, or receive an unexpectedly long call… and it gets pushed to the next day. This is a recipe for disaster! Instead, start your day off by tackling your hardest tasks. This will give you a sense of accomplishment that leads to even more motivation. And what’s better, once you finish the hard tasks in the morning, the rest of your day will seem a lot easier in comparison.
Minimize constant communication. In this day and age, everyone is so connected. You can reach someone in an instant with a quick text, email or phone call. This constant communication, while convenient, can take up a lot of your valuable work time. There are a few ways to combat this. Firstly, when you’re tackling a difficult task that needs a lot of your attention, make yourself unavailable until you’re finished. Put your phone on silent and ask your coworkers to save their questions (unless they’re urgent) until you have finished your work session. Secondly, when you do communicate, communicate thoroughly. Instead of a long email chain consisting of back and forth questions, take your time constructing one email that includes all the information this person might need. Schedule a call to discuss a topic instead of having to answer a series of questions throughout the week. Minimize communication by being more thorough.
Break up your big tasks into smaller to-dos. The big projects can easily feel overwhelming, and leave many of us unsure of where to start. By taking the time to break up these projects into smaller tasks on a to-do list, you’ll have a better sense of direction. This lets you track your progress, and naturally breaks up the work into manageable pieces.
By implementing these 3 healthy work habits, you’re bound to see an increase in productivity, efficiency and overall success in the workplace! It’s never too late to create a good habit, and break a bad one.