As your to-do list fills up each day, it can seem impossible to keep up. Everyone gets the same 24 hours a day, so how to some people get so much more done each day? Here are some secrets of super productive people that can help you make the most of your time.
Forget the to-do list.
More than half of the items that are put on to-do lists never get completed. Instead, utilize your calendar. Schedule those tasks that you need to get done into 15-minute increments throughout the day, and then stick to it. Scheduling your day like this will also help you avoid falling into the trap of multi-tasking.
Your work is important, but so are your body and your personal life. You will be more productive and successful at work if you make it a priority to eat a healthy breakfast, take time to exercise or meditate, and make it home to have dinner with your family. Whatever is a priority to you should be put on your calendar and you should make sure to do it.
Whether it’s email, real mail, or documents to file, if you touch it more than once, you’re not making the most of your time. Set aside time each day to read and respond to email, catch up on filing tasks, and deal with your mail. Try to touch each item only once, dealing with it in full before moving onto the next.
By focusing similar tasks all on one day, such as “meeting Monday” or “clean-up Friday”, you can often get more done in less time. This can also help you plan out your week – rather than just your day – giving you a broader perspective on the responsibilities you have and the time available for them.
It can feel like you have to attend every meeting and accept every assignment – but you don’t. Prioritize the tasks that will help you reach your goals, and say no to everything else. This will help keep you focused and productive.
Productive people know that setting up a plan and sticking to it can transform the way you work. With some of these tips, you can take control of your day to work smarter, not longer.