It’s easy to become stressed under the weight of constant deadlines and responsibilities. But by finding a few ways to incorporate small changes into your daily routine, you can make all the difference in how much you get done. Here is a list of 7 small changes that you can make to improve your daily productivity.
1) Figure out what your goals are for the day and break them down into smaller, manageable tasks.
For example, you might have the goal of making twenty cold calls today. That’s a big goal for one day and you know it will be hard to accomplish. Break down that task into smaller tasks so that you can get the ball rolling. Your first task could be finding the contact information for those people and putting them in your phone (or otherwise jotting down their information).
2) Identify one or two things that you’re going to focus on during the day, and give yourself permission to not worry about anything else.
This is an important point because it sounds so easy in theory but can be very difficult to put into practice. When you try to do everything, you end up not doing anything and feeling overwhelmed. You’re more likely to get more done if you focus on one or two tasks a day.
3) Try to make a habit of sticking with what you’ve planned.
One of the most important strategies for improving your daily productivity is to stick to what you’ve planned. If you know that today is Tuesday and you planned to work on the spreadsheet from last week, then do it! Don’t let yourself be distracted by other tasks or interruptions.
4) Identify distractions when they come up, and if they are routine distractions, start planning them into your day.
It’s important to understand what types of distractions you have on a day-to-day basis. Identify your distractions and note when they come up, and then start planning them into your schedule. This means making time for these distractions in advance, rather than allowing them to interrupt you while you’re working on a specific task. As a quick example, you might want to set aside 30 minutes every day to respond to emails.
5) Take breaks – stretch or clean up your desk; these will both refresh your mind and body so that you can be more productive when you come back.
It’s important to take small breaks during the day, especially when you’ve been focused on a task for a while. This can be as simple as standing up and stretching for a moment, or it can be taking time to tidy up your desk or to walk around the office for a quick change of scenery.
6) If there’s a task that is nagging at you, just do it! Don’t let it bug you all day long.
This is especially true for the tasks that you despise doing. Just get it done so you can move on to bigger and better things. Or better yet, delegate the task to someone else on your team!
7) Learn to say no: you are not obligated to answer every request for your time.
It’s important to spend your time on things that you enjoy and doing the tasks that will bring you the most success. Saying no can be hard, but it’s important so that you can focus on the bigger picture. Saying no to new requests for your time will allow you to devote more energy to building other skills. Saying no will also help you avoid feeling like everything is getting out of control which is another contributor to feeling overwhelmed and poor productivity.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, it might be time to reassess your priorities and analyze your daily routines. You can’t do everything and succeed at the same time, so focus on what’s most important in order to move forward and be successful.