We all know there are certain time-wasters in our everyday lives, like social media. But besides avoiding those, what about real actionable tips that can help you achieve more in less time? Here’s a 5-step plan to be more productive:
- Engage in a morning routine. Many successful leaders have a morning routine that helps focus their mind for the day, calm racing thoughts, and energize their body for the day ahead. You too can achieve this by setting aside 10-30 minutes each morning to: meditate for at least 5 minutes, journal — make a plan for the day, write a short gratitude list — and stretch or workout.
- Eat breakfast. Sounds simple, but many of us don’t make time for a nutritious breakfast, often grabbing convenience food to go. Prepare something healthy the night before so that you can grab that on your way out the door. This saves money on eating out and creates more energy by fueling your body effectively.
- Create boundaries around social media. Those who are productive with their time don’t spend hours on social media. But that doesn’t mean they don’t use apps like Facebook or Instagram. They’re just smart about when they use them. You could designate 15 minutes twice per day for social media by setting a timer. You may soon find that you have a lot more time to get things done.
- Plan your week every Friday. Taking the time to plan out activities and commitments for the following week will give you a big picture of everything you want to do and help you see if you’re over-extending yourself.
- Make the best use of your brain. Sounds interesting, but there is logic here! Some people are more productive at certain times of day. For example, if you are a morning person you might feel it is best to tackle challenging projects first thing in the morning and more menial tasks that require less brain power —like returning phone calls, running errands, and checking and responding to emails — a bit later in the day. Take 5-10 minutes to consider when your brain is most creative, active, and has lots of energy. Then plan activities around that knowledge. You might find yourself considerably more productive, especially if you stick to the tasks you’ve designated for certain times.