Overcoming Bad Habits and Becoming More Productive
We have all adopted bad habits that are preventing us from working to our optimum. These top tips will help you identify how you are spending your time and the smart way to overcoming bad habits and being more productive.
IDENTIFY WHAT YOUR BAD HABITS ARE
How are you spending your time? Sometimes the key habits to change are not always the most obvious ones. Use a diary to map where you are spending your time, and if you want more detail then use an app. that will check your phone and computer use. The results can be very interesting. Here are a couple to try;-
WORK IN BLOCKS OF TIME
Block your calendar time into sections or themes of work so that you can get your head down and focus on one activity or one theme of work in one go. Why not try Timeboxing.
TAKE A BREAK
Set yourself a period of time to work on a block of work and then take a break. Walk away from what you are doing and give your brain time to switch and refresh.
Remove or reduce what distracts you. Whether this is emails, your phone, people, or noise remove them or remove yourself so that you can give an hour or so to focus on one piece of work. You will work through the tasks a lot more quickly if you are not ‘stop starting.’
SPLIT TASKS DOWN INTO ACHIEVABLE CHUNKS
More substantial activities can feel overwhelming, and it is easy to procrastinate to avoid getting started. Break down the more significant activities into more manageable chunks. The size of the chunk may depend on how much time you can block out in the calendar, or it may be based on how long you can mentally focus on a task.
STOP THINKING START DOING
How long have you been thinking and preparing to get started? Can you get started while the information is still coming in or while you are still working out how to carry out the task? Spend some time planning and preparing but don’t wait for perfection. When you have enough information to make a start then make it!
START WITH THE PRIORITY TASKS
Identify your priority tasks for the day and start with those. Nothing else is begun until the priority tasks are completed. Prioritise tasks as high, medium and low and work in this order. This will help productivity and time management.
Don’t leave the tasks that you don’t want to do until the end of the day or the last minute. Move them up the list and get them done and out the way. This will help clear it away from sitting in the back of your mind distracting you.
USE THE SMART ELEMENT OF YOUR PHONE
Smartphones are smart but are you using all the functions available to you? Notifications can be a big distraction but can be switched off or muted during certain times. What apps do you need during the day or can you silence these during work hours?
JUST BECAUSE YOU CAN DOESN’T MEAN YOU SHOULD
Don’t say ‘yes’ to other people when it means you are saying ‘no’ to yourself or your work priorities. Limit the number of meetings in a day, hold meetings over the phone, say ‘no’ or ‘not yet’ to extra work, manage expectations or work deadlines.