Being productive during a long day of work can be challenging at times, but there are a few tricks that I use that I truly believe increase my overall productivity when implemented.
- Turn Notifications Off
Your smartphone can be a distraction... there's no question about it. While at work I do my best to turn all notifications off. I've noticed over the years that a bulk of my notifications are unimportant, and they often lead me to further distractions. So simply putting your phone in 'Do Not' Disturb' mode while at work can easily up your productivity. This step also enlists the 'out-of-sight-out-of-mind' ideology. This is because when your phone isn't constantly going off, you tend to forget it's even there.
- Careful Music Selection
Music often contributes to my productivity in a positive way, but I have noticed that certain songs, or certain genres tend to actually do the opposite. I've found that music with no lyrics is very passive, and listening to it warrants a productive workflow. But, while listening to Hip-Hop music or music with lyrics that I know by heart, I find myself focusing on the song more than my work. When I'm focusing on productivity, I like to listen to calm music that has no lyrics. Oh, and using a playlist or a radio station helps a bunch, therefore your phone stays away!
- Take Note Of Your Distractions... and Eliminate Them
They always say the first step in solving a problem is admitting you have one, and having distractions is definitely one of the enemies of productivity; therefore they become a problem. No matter your work environment, you should spend some time finding distractions. After you find them, avoid them at all costs. For instance, I find that TVs with a graphic on repeat distract me to no end, so I try to make sure there are none in my line of sight while working. There are a plethora of other things that distract me, but noting these and keeping them away definitely contributes to my productivity.
- Structured Working Sessions
Pay attention to your clock while working. I try to do 25 minute sessions of pure work, then reward myself with a coffee refill or possibly a bathroom break. I find that looking at an hour as 50 minutes of pure work and 10 minutes of the other non-work related tasks that come up while at work can easily keep those tasks reasonable. Before doing this, I found bathroom breaks could take 10 minutes when they only really needed to be 5, and getting a snack or a coffee could be a long conversation with a co-worker, when we both had better things to be doing. For me, implementing the 50-10 rule makes those 50 minutes more productive and it adds structure to my day. Which makes me feel more accomplished. I view the 5 minute breaks as rewards for a good 25 minute work session.
So there you have it. In my opinion these few tips have transformed the way I work and stay productive. There are countless other productivity tips out there but what good does to serve to have 20 tips you're trying to implement at once? Theres are short and sweet and provide the most drastic change to my workflow.