Productivity is not just a skill. It is a way of life in which you follow certain principles. Even if you consider yourself lazy and apathetic, you can change your life by introducing new rules.
The trend towards self-development has distorted the very idea of development. People often think about social acceptance rather than about how to increase productivity. Personal growth training that motivates books and webinars – the more, the better. But true self-development is not about the amount of advice received, but about their real benefits.
To assess this benefit, it is important to understand your level of emotionality, stress resistance, energy and other psycho-emotional traits. Some genetic tests is a scientific way to look into your brain and understand the direction you need to go. But for now you need to adopt a few principles:
1. Set your daily targets
Purpose setting is a complex process in which you must give psychology its due. You must set goals that help you feel strong and motivated long before you get the result.
But you need goals for today, not for the future. Ask yourself: Will this step improve your current reality? If you cannot give a positive answer, then you should reconsider.
For example, your goal is to save money. If that goal makes you feel miserable now, it’s not worth it. However, if you feel more confident when you think about your goal, and it makes you feel more comfortable that you will be fine tomorrow, then the goal is worth it.
2. Do you want to get better? Keep an eye on yourself
Do you want to play sports every day? Fine, keep track of the days you do it. You want to write a book? Keep track of how many words you write every day.
You can improve whatever you want in your life, but to do so you must look at your actual actions. When you find that you only study 1-2 times a week and don’t write a word in a day, you will have to think about it.
There is a phenomenon called the Hawthorne effect: a person changes behavior when realizes that he is being watched. That is, if you start watching your actions, you will subconsciously try to change your behavior for the better.
- Use a simple system: download the application to your phone or create a table where you can mark a specific action. Saving data must be fast and easy, otherwise it will not work well.
- Keep a diary. Write down your thoughts regularly to analyze them periodically.
- Time monitoring software like this one is another way to keep track of thing you do on the computer
Productivity is an individual. The same conditions of one person fill with energy and inner motivation, while the desire to work kills another person.
Moreover, even in the same conditions, productivity can fall. At the start it seems to like everything, and then – bam! – burned out. It’s not by chance that the concept of “professional burnout” has already been given the status of a syndrome. It’s important to understand why you have this syndrome. It will also depend on how you increase your productivity, which will be really effective.
3. Treat important decisions more easily
Of course, you have to take decisions that can affect your whole life very seriously. However, you should not overdo it. If you wind yourself up too much, you’ll hesitate for a long time before you take any action.
These endless reflections will take away your time and energy that you could spend on action.
- Clarify the pending decision. Get your thoughts in order. Write down the solution you are facing, list a few possible options and consequences. Deal with everything.
- Set a deadline. Limit yourself in time. You need a deadline by which to make a final decision.
Don’t make your life harder. Even if you consider yourself a smart person, it does not mean that you need to look for the wisest way to get to your goals. If you want to be productive, make your life easier.
- Use simple tools. Don’t make it any harder. Use simple tools. For example, if you want to make a list of goals, you don’t need to create a huge table that takes into account all possible factors up to the wind direction on the day when you’re going for a walk in the park.
- Simplify everything. Optimize all processes, look for ways you can achieve the result in fewer steps.
5. Every day is a new beginning
You will not be able to maintain high levels of productivity every day. There will be failures. There will be days when you will be tempted and distracted from your work.
Do not worry about the time you’ve wasted. There’s no way to get it back. Focus on not losing any more time. If today doesn’t work out, make sure tomorrow is different.
There’s a downside: just because you have a few good days in a row doesn’t mean the next day will necessarily be the same. Treat every new day like a new start. Forget about past successes or failures. The present moment is the only thing that matters.
6. You already know what to do
Face it: in most cases you don’t need any plan to do everything you need. Of course, to-do lists, goals, tables can be useful, but these are just tools. You know what to do and when to do it without their help. All you have to do is focus on the action, stop sneaking around, get distracted by useless things.
- Listen to yourself. What do you really want? What do you think is worth your time and effort? Learn to listen to what your inner voice tells you.
- Keep your focus on important things. When you determine what’s important to you, keep these things in front of your eyes. Write your main goal on a sticker, attach it to a prominent place. Let your every action bring you closer to that goal.