Time is our most valuable resource. We all want to work efficiently. Here are three hacks to work smarter, not harder.
1. Grouping: Group like tasks together. When you are working on a task, shut off notifications for all other tasks and only work on the designated task. For example, set an hour to work on emails. For that hour, only answer emails. When answering emails don’t answer texts. When on an important conference call, don’t respond to emails. When in the mindset of the designated task, you will be able to accomplish that task more efficiently. Group all your emails together, group all your phone calls together, group your writing and reading times together. It will be easier for you to enter and stay in your work flow when you do this. Commit to your grouping by muting notifications from others tasks. Muting notifications from other tasks will prevent you from leaving your work flow.
2. Passive multitasking: Some claim multitasking is a way to be more efficient. However, that isn’t usually true. Switching between different tasks does not allow you to efficiently complete each task to the best of your ability. It’s best to give your complete focus to the task at hand and then move on to the next task. Passive multitasking however is a different story and may make you more efficient. If you are doing something that doesn’t require a lot of brain power, then multitasking can be your friend. For example, while getting a pedicure answer your social media messages. Or while you’re getting your steps in you can listen to a podcast.
3. Have a plan: I’m sure you have heard the quote “failing to plan is planning to fail”. It’s true. You won’t always be motivated to get done what you have to get done. When motivation alludes you, having a plan to fall back on is extremely helpful. Plan out your month or your week. Plan your day the night before. Make a list of the top things you want to accomplish. Write down your goals. Writing things down makes your more likely to do them. Having a tangible plan and schedule helps you stay on track.
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