Productivity Hacks in the Office
If you have always wanted to be that person who gets things done efficiently and quickly at work, whose work is always done early, and you’ve wondered how they manage to finish hour-long tasks in 20min, then this blog is just for you!
All highly productive people have things in common and here is there secret.
First and foremost, make sure you focus on the most important tasks (MITs) first. The theory behind Most Important Tasks is that every to-do list has some tasks that are more important than others. That is a fact! So, if you focus on simply checking off to-do list items, more often than not you’ll end up with a mix of important and less important tasks completed. This will inevitably expose you to the potential for procrastination – it’s easy to spend the whole day checking off easy and quite frankly less important to-dos instead of buckling down on the hard stuff first. What would really work well in your favour is to spend a few minutes at the beginning of your day to choose 1–3 MITs – focus on those things that, no matter what, you need to finish by the end of the day. DO that every day.
An important thing to note here is that sometimes the tasks on our to-do list are actually projects. It’s important to distinguish between a task and a project. And if you happen to have a couple of projects at the same time, make sure before you tackle them down, you break those projects into actionable tasks, i.e. into smaller pieces.
Another important list for you to do is called a “distraction list”. This is a very powerful method of reducing distractions – method that not many know or implement. So, what you should do is keep a list – it could be a Google Doc or an actual physical piece of paper that is nearby while you’re working and focusing on your MITs. The key is, whenever a distracting thought pops up, write it down on the list and get back to the important work. As thoughts, emails, phone calls, etc. pop up during your work, jot them down. When you reach a break in your work, then you can look at the “distraction list” and either tackle them or add them to your larger to-do list.
Last but not least, do take breaks. Everyone, even highly productive people, cannot focus for eight hours straight. It simply isn’t possible so don’t even try to go do an all-nighter with the hope of getting all your MIT list completed by the next day. It won’t work. Know when to rest and take breaks.. No matter how many efficient habits you build, you can’t maintain distraction-free focus for a long time.
Scheduling breaks will help you keep fresh and help you focus on the MITs much easier, which in turn will make you productive throughout your entire day, week, month and year by year.