We all strive to be the most productive person we can be – whether it’s at work, for a hobby, or just in general. But the best part about being productive is that it gives you more time for relaxing, so managing your time as much as possible is very important. Here’s how to be the most organized and productive person you can be.
Learn to prioritize
Trying to do every task that comes your way throughout the day can drain you quickly. In fact, trying to do everything all the time will actually make you less productive. We only have a certain amount of time and energy to spend in the day, so spending it on things that matter is very important. Priorities differ from person to person but for most things, it’s easy to spot what’s the bigger priority. Small tasks tend to fill up our day, but doing the most important ones first can be a great way to ensure that things get done quickly and effectively. A great way to prioritize is to make to-do lists or to separate tasks into “present” and “future.” If something needs to be done immediately, it is of a higher priority whereas if something needs to be done a month from now, it can be moved down the list of priorities or done another day.
This seems counterintuitive but being productive requires taking a break sometimes too. This is because productivity relies a lot on your frame of mind. Take five to fifteen minutes for every hour you work. Even the most productive person in the world can’t work for hours on end. The longer you work, the more possible it is for you to become distracted, so taking a break allows you to deal with those distractions and separate work from other things. A great way to keep track of the breaks you take is to schedule them in advance. So if you know that you are going to be working for 8 hours, schedule a break every 55 minutes and then decide on how long the break will be before taking it. Sticking to this can give you a routine and make you more productive.
Do one thing at a time
It’s easy to think that multitasking is the solution to having a lot of things on your plate but the hard truth is that people are bad at multitasking. There’s no such thing as doing two things at once because you’re actually just switching from task to task. This requires you to pause one task to do another and so on. Some multitasking – like listening to music while working – can be helpful. This is because listening uses a different part of the brain than the work does. But other multitasking like texting while working is just a bad idea because you can only focus properly on one of those tasks at a time. It slows you down instead of speeding you up. In the end, it makes more sense to just focus all your attention on one task and get it done as quickly as possible than to try and do many tasks and drag them out for longer than needed.
Productivity should make life easier, not harder. The key to being productive is to create helpful habits and stick to them. Then, after a productive day, you can sit back and relax!