Have you ever experienced this?
You are sitting with your laptop late at night and you have had waaaay too many cups of coffee. You could probably have stopped with your cup number 5, since your body seems to have become temporarily immune to the invigorating effect of the caffeine.
This is NOT the way you wanted to spend your evening. However, you know that you didn`t have a choice. It was a choice about YOUR life and death.
You have procrastinated for so long, and while you were looking the other way, your neglected tasks formed an evil alliance to bring you down.
You know for a fact that if you can’t handle the ever-growing to do list tonight, you will drown.
Can you relate?
If so, no worries. I’ve been there, too.
Relax, there is still hope.
Let me show you the 5 simple steps to blow your productivity through the roof today.
1. Long-term goal setting
Step 1 is to have clarity and know where you want to go. This should be a long-term goal.
They say that successful people are good at making decisions that will bring them closer to their long-term goal, while people who are not successful make decisions that give them a quick reward.
Life and business are like chess. A good chess player has the ability to think many moves ahead.
What is the best destination for your business and life? Do you know what you want to achieve?
Find out and then set the correct goals.
Great, let`s move over to the next step…
Brian Tracy says that every minute spent in planning saves you 10 minutes in execution.
You should put all your tasks in your master to do list.
What does that mean?
It means that you should have ONE to do list. How many?
There are 3 methods when it comes to handling your to do list.
A. Plan your to do list one week in advance
B. Review your to do list the night before
C. Review your to do list first thing in the morning
You probably think that method A will take some time, and it does. However, it will make you crazy productive. This is for the hardcore people who want BIG results.
I would at least recommend you to use method B and C.
The big difference between successful people and people who aren’t is how they spend their time.
Needless to say, if you don’t already use a to do list, you should start now.
If you have many to do lists, start using one.
Okay, you get the importance of a to do list.
Then over to the…
3. 80/20 rule
Since we only have 24 hours in our day, it`s crucial that we spend them wisely.
The Pareto Principle tells us that 20 % of the tasks on your to do list, will count for 80 % of the total production value.
What does that really mean?
If you have 10 tasks on your to do list, 2 of them should result in 80% of the total production value. So if you were only able to perform those 2 tasks, you would still have been able to deliver 80 % of the total value.
Using the 80/20 rule to identify the most important tasks is key.
If you are implementing the steps mentioned above, the next step will multiply your productivity.
Let`s talk about…
They say that the person who is able to focus his/her mind on one single thought for 2 minutes has the ability to accomplish everything they want.
Having the self-discipline to focus on doing one single task until it`s done will increase your productivity more than any other ability.
Focus is about removing all other distractions and being present.
You got the focus part?
Good, then over to a step that is often overlooked…
5. Work when you are most productive
Studies have shown that most people are most productive the first 2 hours after they get out of bed in the morning.
Some people are night owls and are most productive in the evening or perhaps during the night.
Find out WHEN you are most productive and start blocking out that period of time for your most important tasks.
I`m most productive from 8:00 a.m. to 11.30 a.m., so all my most important tasks are done within that period of time each day.
What to do next?
Now you have the recipe for becoming more productive. Go out there and make every hour count!