“Small Steps” for Big Results
Many people think that burning the candle at both ends means that they’re a productive person. But the truth is, being productive has nothing to do with being busy. Being productive means that you get things done that impact the goals which you have set for yourself, whether it’s your personal life or business life. One of the biggest killers in our society of productivity is multi-tasking. If you really want to work smarter, avoid multi-tasking.
Whether it’s junk piled up around the house, or your desk is cluttered at work, or that television blazing at all times of the day, or the continuous knocks on your door demanding your time – these distractions will prevent you from working at your highest capacity whether it’s mental or physical labour that you need to exert.
Know Your Priorities
For every single goal you’ve made in life, you should have a list of priorities for each day so that you know what’s the most important thing to do that day. That way, if you get those two or three most essential and vital things accomplished, it will impact your goals profoundly.
Learn the Power of “No”
When you start learning the value of your time, it gets easier to say no. Make no, a habit. Say no before you say yes so that you have time to look at your schedule and weigh whether the new thing really ads to your life and helps you reach your goals or not.
Calendars and schedules are your best tactic for taking control of your time. Put everything from that hot soaking bath you want to take to reading bedtime stories to your kids in your calendar around your work tasks because that way, you can ensure you’re also living a balanced life as you become more productive.
Set Aside Time to Do Each Task
When you schedule each thing, don’t lie to yourself about how long it takes. It probably takes 15 minutes to make your bed, but about 30 minutes to read bedtime stories. If something takes four hours, give yourself four hours so that you really do have a chance to achieve your goals.
Use the Right Tools for Each Task
One time saving and productivity tip that stands out for everyone is that you need to use the right tools for a task. If you use the right tools and resources, you’ll end up finishing faster and more accurately.
Use Systems and Processes
When you set up processes, and use systems in your daily life, and not just work-related things – you’ll find that your productivity increases exponentially. Check your mail the same each day, create habits around eating right, exercising, and working, and it’ll all start to feel natural and simple.
The ability to truly experience each part of your life is why you want to become more mindful. Be aware of precisely what you are doing and feeling right now and stop thinking about what happens later.
“Small Steps” Top Tip
Knowing what you want to achieve and how you’re going to get there is as important as setting up the habits, systems, and processes to ensure success. Working smarter requires that you understand that multi-tasking is not something anyone can do. It’s all a myth. The latest neuro-science suggests that you’ll do so much better and be so much more productive if you work smarter by avoiding multi-tasking.
Quotes From Others
“Working hard and working smart sometimes can be two different things.”
- Byron Dorgan: American author, businessman and former United States Senator and Congressman from North Dakota
“Being busy does not always mean real work. The object of all work is production or accomplishment and to either of these ends, there must be forethought, system, planning, intelligence and honest purpose as well as perspiration. Seeming to do is not doing.”
- Thomas Alva Edison: America’s greatest inventor
Ask Yourself This
How can I work more efficiently and smarter?
Have I explored the option of mindfulness?
Do I believe I can multi-task?