Productivity is crucial to anyone who wants to achieve success, but it’s not always easy. In fact, it’s one of the top challenges we face in our everyday lives, may it be in school, work, or at home—which is why most of us are obsessed with finding ways to be more productive.
We read books, we try to list our tasks, plan, watch vlogs, and more, yet at the end of the day, we still find ourselves lying with no work marked as done.
If you’re one of those who have read lots of resources and tried so many tips yet still struggle with being productive, you might want to start small first. Learn why you’re not able to accomplish your tasks and use the small ways below to be more productive.
Table of Contents
Why do you struggle with productivity?
It’s always important to learn the cause of any problems before coming up with solutions, so before diving into the ways to be productive, let’s identify the common causes of unproductiveness first:
There’s an issue with your health
Once you feel bad, whether mental, emotional, or physical, it’ll be hard to continue with your tasks because you are more focused on the pain you feel. The more pain you feel, the more your body seeks rest resulting in more neglected tasks.
Lack of direction
One of the things that might keep you from accomplishing your tasks is the lack of direction. It’s always difficult for anyone to start and complete tasks without knowing their goals and purpose.
The task is too difficult for you
If a task is challenging, the more time you take to finish it, resulting in the abandonment of other important tasks on your list.
You’re not organized
Disorganization is also the reason why some people are unproductive. According to Reliable Plant, an average person wastes 4.3 hours per week searching for documents giving people stress and frustration while reducing concentration and creative thinking. If it happens to you, maybe it’s time to organize your things!
You’re too distracted
Another thing that can cause your unproductiveness is that there are many distractions that surround you. It can be a messy place, a noisy colleague, or your mobile phone. Remember that anything that can steal your focus can also steal your productiveness.
What are the small ways you can try to be more productive?
“While it may seem small, the ripple effects of small things are extraordinary.”, says Matt Bevin.
We love taking more giant steps because we want instant, significant results, which is wrong. After all, great things always have small beginnings! If those famous productivity techniques didn’t work for you, then maybe it’s time to try starting small with the steps below:
Start your day right
Nothing could go wrong with a day started right. It might sound cliche, but it has a massive impact on your life. Starting your day right will give you both physical and psychological benefits crucial for productivity.
To help you start your day right, here’s a list of things that you can do:
Clearing your mind every morning helps your brain focus more. To meditate effectively, you can try breathing exercises and journaling to list your thoughts.
Exercise feeds the brain, which is essential in achieving efficiency and productivity– so get that bones moving! You can try doing a 15- minute workout, which is already helpful in boosting your mood throughout the day.
Prepare a to-do list
A to-do list can give you a sense of direction. It might sound traditional, but it’ll help you remember your tasks and prioritize what is more important.
Take short breaks in between tasks
Some people think that taking breaks can make them less productive, which is the opposite. Taking short breaks after a few minutes of working can help you recharge, allowing you to keep going with your tasks while accomplishing more of them.
Set alarms for each task
Setting alarms for each of your tasks gives you a sense of urgency, which keeps you motivated and energized.
Use tools if needed
Now that we live in a modern world using tools to make your work light and simple is considered an advantage. You can use automation tools for online tasks, and for physical tasks, you can use modern machines.
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Prepare the night before tomorrow
I know that most people promote the “live in the now” attitude, but we should not neglect the power of preparation too! Remember that mornings can be messy and hectic. We wake up with many things in our minds that ruin our focus, so we must plan and prepare for tomorrow. Preparation also helps you reduce stress and error.
Here’s what you can do to prepare the night before tomorrow:
Review your day through journaling
It’ll help you determine what worked and didn’t work for you. It also gives you the idea of what you should do the next day to keep it more productive than the previous one.
Prepare your outfit
Most of us find it hard to choose the right outfit for today, and most of the time, it steals the time for more critical tasks, so make it a habit to prepare your outfit in advance.
Pack your bags
It’ll also help you reduce stress if you prepare your bag the night before. It might sound simple, but it enables you to focus on the following morning’s more critical tasks.
Set your alarm
If you want to be productive, you have to wake up on time so never forget to set your wake-up alarms.
It would be best if you had a recharge after a long day, so rest and relax your mind at night. It’ll help you gain enough energy to accomplish your tasks in the coming day.
Tips on how to get a good night’s sleep:
- Drink milk.
- Read good books before your sleep.
- Use scented candles.
- Take a warm bath.
- Have a quiet time.
- Leave or put your gadgets away from you.
Your gadgets can be your number one distraction. If it’s close to you, it’ll easily allure you to scroll through your favorite social media apps, answer messages, or even play mobile games. Aside from turning it off, leaving them in a separate room will always be better.
Play some music
A study conducted by the Psychology of Music found out that when students listen to music between tasks, their concentration is prolonged. They even perform better, proving that music has a significant impact on our productivity.
Do tasks one at a time
Multitasking is never a good idea. It might look like you are being productive when you multitask, but the truth is, you are just stressing your mind. If you try to juggle two tasks simultaneously, your brain will lose its capacity to accomplish both tasks. The best thing to handle them is to do one at a time.
Eat healthy food
As mentioned above, your health can affect your productivity, and one of the things you can do to live healthier is picking the right food to eat. Aside from that, healthy foods have minerals and vitamins that your body needs— giving you the energy you need in accomplishing daily tasks. If it’s possible, taking vitamins is also recommended.
Improving your productivity doesn’t always mean taking significant steps. Sometimes, those small things can help you achieve significant improvements.
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Never forget that improving your productivity is a process. It’s something you have to develop and practice over time. Don’t rush yourself; always remember that there’s no best way to be productive other than being consistent.