You can increase your productivity – even if you work from home, with children, and pets.
In this post, you are going to learn how to increase your productivity so that you accomplish your goals and have time for the things you love.
Related: How to Not Fail At Time Management
Let’s get into this.
Before you can increase your productivity, you need to understand that productivity is not the same as being busy.
HOW TO DEFINE PRODUCTIVITY
For too long, I incorrectly confused being busy with being productive. If you don’t want to do the same understand these two points:
- Working on something for a long time doesn’t make you productive. If you work on one project or goal for a whole year, you may have been busy but that doesn’t make you productive.
- Productivity is largely what you are able to produce. It is a measure of your output – not time invested.
Instead of measuring your activity as you work on things, focus on your output, and your results.
7 Tips to Supercharge Your Productivity
1. Create a bucket list
A bucket list is a list of things you want to accomplish. Instead of making a bucket list for your entire life or just for your travel dreams, make a bucket list for what you want to accomplish this month. This will help you focus on specific actions you can take to make progress towards small and large goals.
2. Prioritize the items on your bucket list
Time is a limited resource. So. No matter how long or short your bucket list, it is necessary to prioritize the list and focus on the tasks that are the most meaningful and important. Notice I didn’t write to prioritize the easiest items.
When I relied on to-do lists, I’d often find myself doing a bunch of small and non-essential tasks and not getting to the big tasks that offer more momentum towards accomplishing goals. Don’t go down that rabbit hole, it’s not fun or satisfying. This way of attacking a to-do list offers a false sense of productivity.
3. Outline the action steps for your goals
You might have ten items on your bucket list for the month but spreading your focus around is a fast way to get overwhelmed. Instead, of focusing on #allthethings, outline the tasks that are necessary to complete the top three goals on your list.
When listing out your action steps, ensure that each action is helping you accomplish your end goal.
Once you complete the top three goals, go back to your bucket list and outline the next three and continue the process, until you complete all the goals on your bucket list.
4. Assign the action steps completion dates
The never-ending to-do list used to be a badge of honor. Now, I refuse to have a to-do list without having action steps assigned to a calendar. Why?
If there is no time assigned to complete a goal, it’s always an ongoing project decluttering the mind. Yikes. That’s a recipe for mental exhaustion. Even if there is no one enforcing a completion date on your task or goal, I recommend you assign one for yourself.
When you have no due date, you give yourself space to procrastinate and make excuses for not getting tasks done.
5. Put the dates on a calendar
You might have ten items on your bucket list for the month but spreading your focus around is a fast way to get overwhelmed.
Instead, of focusing on #allthethings, outline the tasks that are necessary to complete the top three goals on your list. Once you complete the top three goals, go back to your bucket list and outline the next three and continue the process, until you complete all the goals on your bucket list.
6. Get obsessed with your calendar
I’m not a fan of material obsessions but I make exceptions for a personalized calendar. Once you’ve completed the earlier steps in this post, your calendar is the roadmap for completing your goals. You no longer need to wonder what needs to be completed to reach your goals, it’s all outlined and ready for execution.
7. Do Not Over Commit
Will there be times when you have to reevaluate and reschedule your goals? Of course! But…progress on a goal is like building a brick house. Each brick matters. Decide to lay your bricks intentionally and don’t allow interruptions in your schedule to prevent you from completing the building.
That’s it. Are you surprised I didn’t harp on creating dozens of to-do lists?
Here’s the thing, to-do didn’t work for me as a solo resource. I’d create one and it would end up at the bottom of my handbag along with a pile of negative emotions for not completing the darn thing.
Now, I’m convinced a calendar is a much more useful and impactful tool for anyone who is serious about time management and productivity.
What about you?
Are you setting goals, having the self-discipline to follow through, and creating the results you want in life? The bucket list, outline, and calendar are tools to help you streamline the process.
Do you have other tips for being productive? Drop them in the comments.