We all want to be more productive. After all, who wouldn't want to get more done than they thought possible? Unfortunately, productivity is and continues to be one of the biggest challenges for entrepreneurs and executives. The good news is that you can be more productive. You just have to think differently about how you approach your work.
The number one reason why most people aren't productive is that they're not willing to invest time on slowing down and thinking about their work. Yes, this idea sounds counterintuitive. How can spending time save you time? As strange as it may sound, these actions will not only improve your mood but also double your productivity in the remaining hours of the day.
Here are three ways you can start increasing your productivity now.
1. Create a meditation practice.
Taking the time to incorporate this practice is like taking your brain to the gym, just in a restful way. If you practice silencing your thoughts, you'll give your brain a much-needed break. This means your focus will be crystal clear when you get back to work.
Doing just 30 minutes of meditation every day - broken into two 15-minute increments - will double your productivity. Another added benefit of meditation is that it can reduce stress and improve your mood. Why wouldn't you give it a try?
2. Schedule time to identify your top priorities and reprioritize your time accordingly.
Most people run from meeting to meeting or move from task to task without thinking and end up feeling exhausted at the end of the day. If this sounds like you, stop and think about your priorities. First, ask yourself if you really need to be in all of those meetings or handling all of those tasks. Next, schedule time during the day to assess what's on your agenda.
If you're able to take a step back and pause, you'll be more thoughtful in how you approach your work. Without taking the time to think about what you're doing and why, you'll invariably end up in reaction mode, constantly struggling to keep up.
3. Use productivity tools like RescueTime to get the real picture of what you're doing every day.
What do you do when you finally get a moment of free time? If you're choosing activities that further stimulate your over-stimulated brain, you're not doing yourself any favors. For example, did you know that watching TV or using social media can "scramble" your brain and affect your ability to focus?
Look at how you're spending your free time and figure out if you're doing something that is actually having a negative impact on you and your ability to concentrate. After you do that, set a goal to reduce the stimulated breaks and use that freed up time to rest, meditate, or think.
If you're ready to get twice as much work done in half the time, slow down and schedule breaks in your day. You'll be amazed at how much more you get done, and you'll end up having more free time in the end.