If some of the traditional means of increasing productivity haven’t worked for you, try thinking about them in a different way. For instance, to-do lists. Some people find checking the boxes of daily to-dos to be motivating and satisfying. Others find it completely
overwhelming and daunting. Here are a few ways to update this classic productivity tip.
Habits are what build a methodical system that helps you achieve progress and accomplish goals, and they form based on how frequently you engage in them, not just over time. Instead of changing habits by listing “what” you want, consider “who”
you want to become or “how” you want to get there. This will enable you to work on a system to foster more positive, permanent results rather than continue to focus on short-term, singular, temporary goals.
It may be too much to expect professionals to simplify their lives down to a single must-do, which is where you supplement your musts with mights. They may be just as important or necessary as your daily highlight, but they just didn’t make the #1 cut, and it will be
okay if you don’t get to them today. There’s always tomorrow, after all. By reducing the demand you inflict on yourself, you may begin to feel better about your daily accomplishments and deliverables. In turn, productivity can improve and the feeling of being overworked could dissipate.
Start each day by asking yourself, “What do I want to get done today?” Adjusting your mindset from need to want can help facilitate a feeling of accomplishment where previously you may have felt defeated if you were unable to complete a lofty to-do list. Additionally,
this practice will in turn help you better understand your priorities and consider the process it will take you to complete your daily must-do.
It can be difficult to ask for help when you become overworked, but it’s completely acceptable and normal. Plus, delegating work ensures that the right tasks and projects are being completed by the right people, and it’s one way leaders can maximize their time at
work. With effective delegation, leaders can focus on the bigger picture and outsource tasks to teammates who may be better suited to complete them. Collaborating to get the most work done with the amount of time you collectively have—that’s productivity.
Exactly as it sounds, time blocking is when you dedicate chunks of time to singular tasks. Week by week, consider the things that are must-dos or goals and block out everything you’d need to do to prepare for them. Include everything from work projects to family
commitments to appointments and personal goals—and carve out time for whatever you might need to prepare for them, such as research or reading time, phone calls, meals, and everything in between.
Listening to audiobooks, news articles, podcasts, or watching videos at increased speeds—which many players allow—can naturally increase the quantity of content you consume. Avoid multitasking whilst listening or watching sped-up content,
however, as it’s easier to miss key details at increased speeds, and you may have to rewatch or relisten to get the point. But if you dedicate your attention to the content, you could walk away having listened or watched 2-3x as much as you would have at normal speed.