We all probably have days when we feel like we are too tired to do anything, or simply lack time or motivation to do them.
I can say in all honesty that I don’t know what I would do without these productivity hacks – I’d probably be frantically jumping from one task to another, and still not completing them by the end of the day! (Or telling my tasks to go to hell, and instead watch Netflix all day long.)
Whether you’re a busy mom, a college student, or an entrepreneur who wants to have more control over their time, here are 10 of the best productivity hacks!
Table of Contents
1. Set your goals for the day
Try sitting down with a blank piece of paper every morning (or, even better, the night before!) and write down the most important tasks or goals for the day.
Having a list will help you track your progress as you check things off
Having a to-do list will keep you motivated since you can take the day one step at a time, rather than feeling like you need to complete a huge amount of tasks all at once.
2. Do the hardest things first
It’s good to do the hardest and important things first, as you’ll probably have more energy and less distractions.
Set priorities for yourself by asking “What is the most important thing I need to do today?”.
One of the best productivity hacks I use is to number your to-do list (starting from the first task on your list being the most important one). Then start doing the tasks exactly in that order – don’t move on to the next one until you’ve completed the one before that.
3. Shut off the distractions
At the time you need to be productive, shut off all your distractions!
This means turning off your notifications, not checking e-mail or social media, and focusing on the current task you’re doing until you’ve completed it.
If you want more tips on how to stay refreshed and focused, check out my article on 40 quick and easy self-care activities.
4. Review your week
At the end of every week (may it be on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday), take a moment to review your week.
Did you achieve what you wanted to achieve? Could you have achieved the same in a shorter amount of time?
Analyzing where your time is going will really help you overview whether you’re spending your time like you want to, and if not, then learn from it and try managing your time differently next week!
5. Start with 5 minutes
Have something you don’t want to do? Make a deal with yourself that you’ll only do it for 5 minutes.
Usually you’ll find that it isn’t that hard to do it, so you’ll end up doing the whole thing.
Starting is often the hardest part, so just get on with it!
6. Get enough sleep
I’m sure you already knew this, but it’s easy to forget the importance of sleep and overload yourself with tasks.
Sleep recharges the brain, and boosts our effectiveness at work, allowing us to make better decisions, which is crucial for staying productive.
Overworking can lead to burnout, so make sure you get enough sleep!
7. Take breaks
Whether I’m doing physical work or writing a new blog post, I always remind myself to take breaks from time to time.
Taking breaks is essential to keep your brain from overheating, and your body from getting tired.
It’s recommended to take small breaks of about 5-10 minutes at least every 45 minutes. Get some movement, stretch your back, or drink a glass of water.
If your work involves staring at a computer screen then you should also definitely do some exercises for your eyes while on your break!
8. Avoid multitasking
Taking on several tasks at a time may seem productive, but usually it doesn’t produce the best results.
Focusing on one task at a time is crucial if you want to guarantee the quality of your work, and get it done faster.
Tackle your tasks and activities one thing at a time!
9. Stop over-consuming information
When it comes to productivity, one of the things I struggled with most is searching for more and more information on how to do something that I procrastinated the actual activity.
If you’ve already read useful information on productivity, there’s no need to read 30 more articles.
More isn’t always better and the information may start to repeat itself, and you’ll be stuck in a cycle of searching for better ways to do something.
10. Say “no” more often
I always ask myself “Is this worth my time?”, and whenever the answer is no, or eh, I’ll probably be better off doing something else.
We all have 24 hours in a day, and if you want to make the most out of your time, it’s often better to leave some things undone.
Take control of your day by identifying your priorities and focusing on them, rather than doing things that don’t improve your life in any way, or that you don’t genuinely enjoy.