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10 Tips for Incredible Productivity

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Let’s face it.  We only have 24 hours in a day.  Survey 25 of your friends and I bet 25 say they wish they had another hour in the day.

Employers are looking to do more with less.  If you have a job, you know companies are laying off in droves and loading extra work onto already overloaded employees. If you are an entrepreneur, you’re seeing that you have to produce twice as much for half the profit.  If you are looking for a job, you know how fierce the dog fight is. You have to send out one more resume, go to one more interview, attend one more networking event than your out of work colleague who is gunning for the same jobs you are.

Combine that with all of the information being thrown at us each day that we’re expected to keep up with and the plethora of other things going on in this non-stop 24/7 hyper-speed world and you’ll understand why optimizing your productivity is no longer just a secret advantage, but a necessity.

But why do some people seem to accomplish more in a day than others do in a week? Better yet, why do they seem to do it effortlessly and rub it in by making it look easy? Each incredibly productive person has their own secret, but at the same time, they all seem to have a lot of the same principles in mind.

Let’s take a look at the most effective ones:

Productivity: Getting Personal Kanban to Done

Know what needs to be done. Plan ahead. If you can sit down already knowing exactly what needs to be done, you’ll obviously save time but you’ll also save precious mental energy from being scattered around.  It will help you achieve laser-like focus on the task at hand.

Know exactly why you are doing it. What do you hope to achieve by completing what you are working on? What is your end goal? This will help motivate you. Your mind performs much better when it knows exactly what it is doing and why it needs to be done because it is working with purpose.

Make sure you are being results oriented, not just action oriented. Lots of people feel that just because they are working, they are being productive. Before you start working, define not only what you will do, but more importantly, what you will accomplish.

Have a list. A task list will help free your mind to focus on being productive. This will help you avoid wasting mental energy trying to remember what needs to be done or what to do next.

Set up a distraction free environment. This may include waking up earlier in the morning or working into the middle of the night. A distraction free 20 minutes of pure focus will go a lot further than an hour of constant disturbances.

Take a few minutes to clear your mind. Life’s stressful. Life’s demanding. You can’t just positive think your way to bliss. If the mind is cluttered with the stresses of the day, you’ve diminished your productivity before you’ve even started.  Take a few minutes for a relaxing meditation and just let go. Your mind and your work will thank you.

Focus specifically on the task at hand. A raging river carries with it more force than five trickling streams. Today you are the Mighty Mississippi.

Don’t worry about the uncontrollable. Is the job going to call you back? Did the investors buy your pitch? How did you do on that test you took today? If there is nothing you can do about it at this immediate moment, put it at the back of your mind. You can’t achieve laser like focus, and thus incredible productivity, with 12 other things needlessly cluttering your mind. (P.S. I’m sure you did great on that test).

Don’t worry about perfection.  Worry about productivity. In an earlier post I talked about how perfection comes about as a result of the knowledge you pick up along your journey.  You’ll never be able to craft a perfect plan before you start.  Just get started.  Through insight, trial, and error you’ll gain all of the wisdom you need to achieve your ideal of perfection.

Find your “Incredible productivity point” of the day. We all have one. For some it may be first thing in the morning, for others it may be at 2am.  But we all have an ideal time when we are more productive and our work is higher quality.  Maximize this time.

 

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