If you're feeling like there aren't enough hours in your day, we hear you and we feel you! As we head into perhaps the busiest season of the year, we're looking for all the ways to make the most of our time and minimize holiday stress. While we can't put more time on the clock (we only wish!), we can provide you with top-notch productivity tips to maximize what you're able to get done.
Below, we tapped three productivity coaches for their best tips. With these, you'll learn how to streamline your workday, stay productive at home, remain 100 percent productive while you work through your to-do list and even stop procrastinating altogether. If any of these sounds like things you need in your life right now (*insert hand-raise emoji*), read on below — and be sure to take notes!
What are the 5 best productivity tips to improve my workday?
You know those days where you seem to cross off everything on your work to-do list? High-Performance Productivity Coach, Sandi Glandt, thrives on these. In fact, as an entrepreneur and mom of two, she's made it her business to teach others how to attain more of these super-productive days.
As many roles have transitioned out of the office and into remote work over the last year, she especially understands workday productivity and how it looks different than it did in a traditional office role. In her latest article, she acknowledges this by saying, "It seems to me, many people are in panic mode now because of these changes. I want to reassure you of one thing — we only give fuel to the things that we put attention on."
Instead of worrying about changes in circumstance, she uses her expertise to provide tips on how to stay positive and productive to improve your workday. Here are just a few of them.
- Minimize distractions: Focus on the task at hand by limiting notifications across social media, email, etc, she recommends.
- Plan the evening before: "Especially in uncertain times it’s critical to control the controllable- which means your schedule and what’s going on day-to-day," Glandt says.
- Time block your projects: Give yourself a set amount of time to focus on something, she suggests. If you don't finish, come back to it later, with the objective being to be conscious of the time to complete the task.
- Take advantage of your new setting: Opt outside for breaks to bring fresh ideas and creativity to your tasks.
- Hardest tasks should always come first: "Always get the hardest thing out of the way first so the rest of the day is smooth sailing!" she adds.
How can I be productive at home (when it comes to cleaning, meal prep, etc)?
When it comes to productivity outside of work hours, how you tackle your time can take an entirely different approach. This is why we turned to Alexandra Beauregard, Productivity Coach and Systems Strategist for Female Entrepreneurs at The Productivity Zone, for her recommendations. She says: “When it comes to cooking, cleaning, and laundry, setting a schedule and getting yourself into a routine is everything! Scheduling everything means knowing you have time for everything and having a routine means not having to recreate the wheel or think too hard about it.”
What is the secret to productivity?
Of course, saying you'll stick to a schedule or complete your to-do list and actually doing it is another thing. Beauregard's advice to make your routine stick? Create a one you’re happy with!
"If you don't love your routine or get something you want out of it, you'll never follow through," Beauregard says. "Constantly ask yourself: What can I do to make this better, easier, or more fun?"
Which leads us to our next point — what to do when lack of motivation strikes. Scroll on for advice on how to tackle procrastination.
How can I stop procrastinating?
When your to-do list is never-ending, but your motivation is at a zero, Beauregard suggests following what she calls the five-minute rule. "[This rule] is a cognitive behavioral therapy technique that basically says: pick a task and vow to work on it for five minutes. Only five minutes. If at the end of the five minutes, it's so horrible you want to stop, you can. But usually, five minutes is all you need to get into a groove!” she says.
Give it a try the next time you feel like putting something off!
How can I be 100 percent productive?
While no one can be 100 percent productive all of the time, there are ways you can channel your energies to get things done! These sure-fire strategies from CMO of Spanish-language newsletter Bonita Semana, Carissa Parrish, will help you capitalize on timing and remain 100 percent productive. Here's how she stays productive.
- Be honest: According to Semana, it's important to take a critical look at whether you work better at night or in the morning. "It's important to take a look at your patterns of behavior and use them to your advantage. Do what works best for you and resist the urge to stress out because you’re not on the same timeline as others."
- Find accountability tools: "There are countless apps, organization tools and platforms available to streamline productivity," says Parrish. "I find the best ones are ones you probably already have at your disposal, think the screen time tracker on your phone. This can help hold you accountable if you’re truly looking to make a change."
- Be gentle with yourself: "Our globally connected world makes it easy to play the comparison game," says Parrish. "Give yourself a break. There are only so many hours in a day." While you pursue your passions, try to check in during moments of overwhelm and remind yourself that your value is not measured by how much you produce every day. Remember, some days are for strategizing and others for executing.
- Break down larger projects into smaller achievable steps. You'll reap the positive emotional rewards of completing tasks and you’ll be inspired to keep the momentum going.
Shop These Vital Favorites