Do More in Less Time – And Have More Time for Yourself
Getting things done brings such a great feeling of accomplishment, but it can also be overwhelming if the task seems insurmountable. Sometimes, the days just don’t seem long enough to do everything we want to do. When that happens, worry can set in, but it doesn’t have to!
It all begins with a solid foundation of time management and scheduling. It’s okay if you’re not a good time manager right now, you can learn to be. It just takes a little bit of practice and you’ll soon be getting more and more done.
When you see how much you’re accomplishing, you’ll work even harder during your busy times, and enjoy those down times more thoroughly.
These scheduling strategies will help you become an expert manager of your time:
Schedule Your Life For Maximum Benefit
You can avoid procrastination and the big stressed-out rush to meet a deadline by scheduling each day and using just a bit of self-discipline to stick to your schedule.
- It helps to break things down into smaller tasks. For example, do you have a big presentation coming up at work in two weeks? Don’t try to do it the night before it’s due. Start now. Working for just a half hour each day can help you get that presentation done with plenty of time to spare.
- It removes wasteful practices from your day. By scheduling your day according to your priorities, you can better utilize the time that you might otherwise have wasted doing unproductive things, like watching television or waiting for the next item on your to-do list to come to you.
Disallow Doubts From Getting In Your Way
That little voice in the back of your mind that tells you, “It’s too much work,” or “It’s not going to happen,” doesn’t know what it’s talking about!
- You can do anything you set your mind to. Keep that thought in mind as you go through your day. The more you think it – or even say it out loud – the more you’ll internalize and believe it.
- Remember your capabilites. When you remind yourself how much you’re capable of doing, you’ll work harder so you can reap the rewards of being done with work.
- No matter how you reward yourself, make it a point to do so regularly. Finished that presentation? Take the evening off and watch your favorite movie! Whatever reward works for you is a good one – as long as the work’s done first.
Recognize When You’re Getting Stressed
Sometimes, in an effort to get more done, you’ll find that you aren’t getting the time for yourself that you’d hoped for. When this happens, stop and reassess your schedule.
- Are you following your agenda? Are you productive during your scheduled working times? Are you meeting your goals? Where can you make changes for better success?
- Do you concentrate and get your work done during your working hours? If not, you may find that you still have to work when you should be relaxing. This is a vicious circle that leaves you feeling stressed, while getting nowhere.
Eliminate Stressors And Build In Stress Relief
Think about the following as you go about your workday:
- By focusing during working hours, you’ll complete each task much sooner. Get your drudgery tasks out of the way as quickly as possible to make more time for more enjoyable tasks.
- Work time is for work only – so avoid distractions. Ringing phones and other issues can stop you from accomplishing your work. Forward calls to your voice mail and establish “do not disturb” times. You’ll be amazed at how much work you can get done without distractions!
- If you complete your tasks early, keep working until your schedule says it’s time to stop. Perhaps you can tackle some work for the next day to get ahead. Being a little ahead gives you the flexibility to take care of inevitable emergencies without falling behind in productivity.
- Recognize when you need a break. People are not machines so your schedule should reflect that. Realistic break times should be part of even the busiest schedule.
By planning your time wisely, you’ll accomplish more and be able to reap the many benefits of true relaxation when you’re done. It’s well worth the effort!
Transitioning To Working At Home
Have you been forced to work from home due to the global coronavirus crisis? Obviously you are not alone during these strange times!
The initial joy of being able to work from home can be quickly replaced by worry, a lack of motivation and never-ending distractions.
How on earth do you get things done when there are so many distractions in your home? While home working can deliver a lot of benefits, there are a lot of challenges it presents too and many people seriously underestimate these!
In this post, you’ll discover some useful tips you can follow when it comes to transitioning to working from home.
Set Up A Quiet Work Area
With all of the distractions at home, it can be really hard to concentrate on work. This is especially true if you have kids at home.
So, if you want to ensure you can get things done in peace, it’s worth setting up a quiet working space.
Try and use a room that isn’t frequently used during the day. Place a sign on the door when you’re trying to work to let others know not to disturb you.
Make sure the workspace is comfortable too as you won’t get a lot done if you aren’t comfortable.
Start Work At Your Normal Time
One of the main challenges that can come from working from home is delaying the time you usually start.
It’s tempting to have a lie in and take longer to relax in the morning before starting. However, this only zaps your productivity.
If you want to ensure you stay productive, you’ll want to start as early as possible. The positive side to this is that the earlier you start, the earlier you’ll get to finish.
Limit Social Media Screen Time!
You’ll have a lot more time to check in on social media when you haven’t got the boss breathing down your neck. However, it’s easy to waste hours using social media accounts if you aren’t careful.
Many home workers find it useful to set limits on their social media use during working hours. It could be simply committing to using it during a specific time for example. Having limits in place makes you more aware of how much you’re using it.
Maintain Your Usual Work Routine
It’s really important to try and maintain your usual routine. This is linked to starting work at your normal time as mentioned above.
This means, getting ready for work in the same way you usually do.
So, wake up at the same time, have your usual cup of coffee and get dressed into your work clothes. It’s amazing how much of a difference this can make to your productivity.
These are just a few tips you can follow when transitioning to working from home. It can be a big adjustment, but there are lots of tools and tips out there to help.
Trying to maintain your usual routine is one of the best things you can do during these changing times and will allow you to be just as productive as you were in your work place.
Here are a few more tips to help you with productivity when working from home.
How To Be Productive Working At Home
As convenient and beneficial as working from home can be, it can also prove to be damaging to productivity.
The trouble is, up until now, you’ve associated your home as a space for relaxing. So, it can be difficult switching to a more productive mindset when you’re in the comfort of your home.
The good news is, there are ways to boost your productivity when remote working. Here, you’ll discover some of the best ways to stay productive when working at home.
Keep Your Workspace Tidy And Just For Work
You’re going to find it hard to stay productive if your workspace is cluttered.
So, before you start, take time to clean up the area you’re planning on working in.
Get rid of any clutter and organize the space.
The cleaner and tidier the space is, the easier you’ll find it to focus on your work.
Take Regular Breaks And Get Outside For Air
Suddenly being cooped up in the house all day can be detrimental to productivity.
It can cause issues with low mood and leave you feeling less motivated to get through your workload.
By taking regular breaks and making time to get out into the yard, it can really boost those productivity levels.
Spend just 10-15 minutes gardening or reading a book outdoors to help refresh productivity levels.
Always Prepare For The Day Ahead
When you go out to work, you know there’s things you need to do to get ready for the day.
You have a routine which prepares you for work. However, when you start working from home you don’t really have that.
Rather than thinking you can now work in your pajamas all day, make the effort to get dressed.
Create a morning routine which sets you up for work. That way, you’ll find it much easier to stay productive if your mindset is geared towards work.
Harness The Power Of Nature
Did you know that plants and flowers can help you to feel more motivated? Adding them into your workspace can help to brighten up the working environment.
Numerous studies have shown how effective greenery can be within an office environment. So, if you want an easy way to stay productive, add a few houseplants and flowers to your home office.
You can also utilize the power of scent too. In some countries, workplaces spray citrus scents to boost employee productivity. Try experimenting with different scents to see which ones make you work more efficiently.
Staying productive when working at home isn’t easy but it is doable.
The above are some of the best methods you can try to increase those productivity levels. Taking regular breaks away from your computer are important, not just for productivity but for your health too.
OK, I hope these pointers will help you to stay productive in your working from home during these unprecedented times, and stay safe.
Whatever you want to achieve in life or business, you need to have a clear vision of where you are heading. Without this, how on earth are you going to know if you are on the right track or straying from your path?
Setting clear, distinct goals is like looking down the barrel of a rifle and can ensure that you are ALWAYS aiming in the right direction and keep you on track.
Having a clearly defined path also give you “stickability” because when you encounter obstacles (and you will) it will help you to remain focused on where you need to go.
Without this level of clarity, you are much more likely to give up when the going gets tough and that is doing you a disservice because you deserve the rewards that your goals will give you.
The power of goals shouldn’t be underestimated and they should be set and re-evaluated often (especially your short term goals). Use goals to give you momentum, and more importantly, to maintain it, especially when you are going through the major challenges you are going to face.
Stay strong, be resilient and you will succeed; you are just being tested to see whether you really want it and you do, dont you?
Now, sit down right now and set some goals, and take some immediate action; let’s go get ’em!
Often when we set goals, we inadvertently set ourselves up for failure before we even begin! Now, does that make sense to you? Of course it doesn’t but in our haste to have it all, many people set goals that have no basis in reality and are quite simply unattainable. And so you are in trouble before you even get off the ground.
Goal-setting is an incredibly important (and useful) part of the process for anyone who wants to achieve more success and have a richer, more fulfilled life. Realistic dreaming is the precursor to effective goal-setting. Let me explain what I mean by this…
The whole reason behind setting a goal is to accomplish something that is bigger, better, or more advanced in some way than what you have now, or where you are in your life at present. The trouble is that if you set a goal that is simply too big, you will know subconsciously, if not consciously, that you are going to struggle and this creates negativity at the onset, because you will likely be in a state of overwhelm before you even begin! A goal that seems unattainable may very well be that so you need to be aware of this.
Or, it may simply be a case of breaking this big goal into smaller interim goals as guideposts along the way. This is a good practice to get into whatever the size of the goal as it gives you a clear roadmap.
Dreaming realistically sets the tone for the big goals. A bigger home, expensive car, personal bests in any area of your life – those are the big goals, the be-all and end-all. The ultimate prize. But instead of only dreaming of the big stuff, allow yourself to have some goals that come after the initial start, but before the ultimate finish as these are the milestones that will keep you embraced in the journey.
So, if you set a goal to lose 100 pounds, and that’s the big, ultimate accomplishment, set smaller milestone for 10 pounds, 20 pounds, 50…you get the idea. Going from zero to 100 seems like it will take a lifetime and can cause you to doubt that it can be achieved. But going from zero to 10, on your way to 100, seems a much more realistic and attainable scenario.
Realistic dreaming isn’t negatively stating to yourself that you “can’t accomplish a goal that big”, or that “you’ll never be able to do that”. Rather, realistic dreaming is starting from the beginning with logical, realistic smaller goals that will help you to take the action you need to take to achieve the big end goal, while enjoying and learning from the process, as well. This will ensure that you are much more likely to stay the course and reach your eventual big goal.
And don’t forget to reward the small goals you reach along the way. Small successes turn into big achievements, so they shouldn’t be downplayed. In fact, just the opposite – even the small successes should be celebrated big time!
Start your goal-setting from the very beginning with realistic dreaming, and you’ll find that you reach your end goals easier, and you enjoy the process that much more.
In life, in business, in everything, there comes a time when you need to start setting goals, and the journey to those goals must be started; remember the first step is always the hardest. Most people who are striving for success in their lives choose to focus on the goal instead of the journey towards that goal but in doing so, they truly miss out on the myriad lessons to be recognized along the way and are missing out on the joy that comes along with their growth.
When you begin a journey toward a goal, there is always a period of excitement, of renewal, of momentum and motivation. And when you accomplish the end goal, there is a feeling of satisfaction and fulfillment. The starting point and the ending point are to be celebrated, but so is the journey in between!
To ensure that YOU don’t miss out on the many lessons along the path from start to end, here is a helpful little technique for you to use:
Depending on the goal you have set, whether it be weight loss, business-related, better relationships…it really doesn’t matter…keep a journal of the process you are going through.
Keeping a written journal of some kind (this may be paper and pen, or online) can really help you identify thought and behavior patterns, positive and negative habits, and can help you discover things about your thinking and the actions you take. Some of these things will be obvious to you – no surprise there. But you may learn some things about yourself that will come as a complete surprise, and herein lies those valuable lessons.
By learning what works, what doesn’t work, how you tend to react to when things go well and when they do not, you begin to learn to adjust your course based on where you are at that moment. And being “in the moment” is a life lesson that can’t be underestimated!
When you really take the time to sit down and analyze the how and why of your journey, you can learn some incredibly valuable lessons about your action and reaction. And once you have learned these lessons, they can be used in all areas of your life to help you create and achieve even higher, stronger, more important goals. Once you have identified your strengths and weaknesses, you can use that knowledge to your advantage and ensure that you always try to play to your strengths and avoid your weaknesses. This will skyrocket your chances of success now and in the future!
But, the thing is, if you are blissfully unaware of the intricacies of your journey, you will never know this as you will be missing these incredibly valuable insights and lessons.
So, if you can keep your eye on the goal while you are on your journey, this will help you to reach those successes that you are after much quicker! So, go and set your goals, and keep one eye on the journey and enjoy the process!
One of the most important steps that you can do in the goal setting process is to give your mind a positivity makeover. You know that being positive is important right? So doesn’t it make sense to create an environment of positive thougth and feelings that surrounds you every single day to move you forward and also make you feel great?
But this can be easier said than done and how exactly can you surround yourself with positivity? Well, I have some good news for you; it isn’t really all that difficult at all! If you just follow a few simple steps you will boost your feelings of posititvity and this will support you on your journey towards your goals. Here are just a few of the steps you can use!
Remove Any Obvious Negativity Immediately
What do I mean by this; well the answer is twofold. It could be the things you surround yourself with but it could also be the people you surround yourself with. They are both equally important to the larger journey you’re on. If you have things around you that instantly conjure up negative emotions, get rid of them, or at least get them out of your immediate surroundings.
If you are surrounded by negative people, it can be very difficult to break free from that mold and live a positive life. This takes some deep introspection, and you must be willing to remove these people as much as possible from your immediate surroundings. Now, I do understand that this can be incredibly difficult, especially if some of these people are your close friends. But be honest with yourself and ask “what are they really bringing to my life; do they enrich or impoverish it?” You need to find the courage to remove these negative influences fast and, believe me, the reward you will immediately gain will be very obvious once you’ve accomplished it.
Clutter stresses most people out, and the last thing you need when trying to cultivate a life of positivity is negative stress. So get rid of the clutter!
Clean off and organize all “horizontal surfaces” – tabletops, desks, counters, windowsills. These are generally problem areas in the battle against clutter.
But how do I decide what gets thrown away? Easy! Hold the object. Does it evoke a joyful feeling, a happy memory? If it does, great but if it doesn’t it is time to get rid of it. Your life is far too short to hold onto things simply because you feel you “should”, or because someone bought it for you and you feel obligated to keep it.
Those areas that typically house a lot of “stuff” should be organized, with a place for everything, and everything in its place. Your desktop is a perfect example – it’s much easier to sit down and work when you have a clear, positive space in which to do so!
Stack The Positivity!
The final part is to start adding in positive things to your environment. Art, music, living plants, or maybe even a small, calming aquarium! By adding things to your surroundings that you love and enjoy, you’ll have a much more positive experience when in those surroundings. Your productivity will increase, and you’ll be well on your way to those end goals!
We all know that it can be difficult to have a good work-life balance. It isn’t always easy to strike a balance between a happy boss and a happy family, but there are some simple things that you can do both at home and work to enable you to find that balance.
Because this is so important, it has been covered by groups like Mental Health America, Web M.D., Forbes, and Business News Daily. Now you could Google all this information yourself but this article will condense all this information into 5 quick and simple tips that will enable you to create a more balanced life.
1. The Power Of Routine
One of the first things you should do every day is produce a to-do list and order things in priority. Doing this allows you to focus more of your energy on the most important tasks for the day and by using a simple checklist that you can refer to, you can quickly see what you have managed to accomplish druing that particular day. Having a daily routine can ne a quick way to reduce work-based stress and you will accomplish more so your boss will be happy too; a win-win situation.
You can also use the power of routines at home as they are a quick way to let everyone know what’s going on and when. But don’t forget that you need time to unwind and relax, so don’t be afraid to give yourself and your family some valuable downtime just to chill out and unwind from the stresses of the day. And this downtime is the perfect time to come together as a family and bond, so you will all feel even closer, so pleasae don’t neglect adding this to your routine; it is critical for your family relationships and will bring you all closer together.
2. Make Use Of Technology
Technology is so smart these days, so if you are sick, your children are sick, or the commute will be extra-long due to weather or outside circumstances, then make use of it to work remotely from home. Use Skype for conference and video calls, and this way you can still provide your employer with what they need while giving you some breathing room.
3. Learn to Say No
Most people are just downright uncomfortable with saying no at work but the problem with this is that it results in you taking on too many tasks, working overtime, and becoming increasingly stressed about not being able to get it all done. If there’s a job you know that you won’t be able to get done on time or that you are not suited for, be prepared to say no. You may be surprised at how well this is received by your employer.
You also need to be able to say no to social and home life events that could end up being too taxing as well. Do you have social obligations that are just too draining? Perhaps they don’t allow you to spend enough time with your family in the evenings. Cutting back on these social engagements will help you to have more family time and restore balance.
4. Learn Your Employer’s Policies And Know Your Rights
Learning leave, vacation, sick, and disability policies are paramount. Also, learn what telecommunication systems your company has in place. If there aren’t any, you may need to ask. This will alleviate any stress if you need to use vacation or sick days or if you need to telecommute.
If you have children, it may be beneficial to learn their school’s policies too. Knowing the procedure for turning in sick notes, calling out for the day, or showing up late can save a lot of headache for all of you!
Let your employer know what’s going on. Let them know where you’re at on individual projects, if you’re going to be on time, ahead of deadline or behind on schedule. Communicating these vital elements to your employer will help you both as they know where you are and can allocate assistance if required and this can reduce stress for you too; just be honest.
Communication at home is probably even more critical than at work, especially if you are married with kids! Make sure you that everyone knows what is going on with you. And conversely, it is good to know what is going on with everyone else.
Why not have a family meeting once a week to discuss upcoming events, anything that is causing stress or friction, things that may need planning and other elements of life that could cause stress if not well planned? This simple act alone may help you to find that balance between work and home.
OK, so there you have it;these five simple steps can really help you find some balance in your busy life. Do you have your own ways that you use to strike work-life balance that weren’t on the list? If so, good for you and keep to them if they are working for you and your family.
“Waste your money and you’re only out of money, but waste your time and you’ve lost a part of your life.” – Michael LeBoeuf
Do you usually feel overwhelmed with all the tasks included in your to-do list?
Are you struggling every single day to meet your deadlines despite putting in a lot of hard work? Do you end up double booking or forgetting appointments because you never had the time to go through your schedule first?
Were there important projects that were overlapped by the smaller “fires” that need your attention? These, my dear friend, are symptoms that your time management is going out of control.
At one glance, it might seem like all tasks listed on your list have equal importance and urgency. But with just several minutes of your time, their differences will quickly become clearer once you learned how to determine your priorities then start organizing and executing around them.
There are many cases when people are all too excited in managing their time in the hopes of allotting enough for everything that they end up neglecting the more vital things and putting more effort and time on those that are not of great importance.
Identifying and deciding what is the most essential is one skill that you can develop with a mindful practice. Every person in this world has his or her own unique set of goals, responsibilities, and duties and no single formula is working for everybody.
To have an effective setting of priorities, you need to understand first your personal dreams and roles. What are the duties of your job? What kind of commitments do you have to the community and your family? What are your long term professional and personal aspirations? How do you plan to move toward them? Once all these things have been clear to you, it will also become easier for you to define your life’s priorities and set your time to make the most out of it.
Because of all this I’ve been on a time management and prioritization drive lately. Poor time management and a lack prioritizing tasks costs money yet I think it’s also one of the easiest things to fix in your business. You just have to open your mind!
Why make running your business or life any harder than it needs to be, right?
So, what you really don’t have the time for these days is NOT GUARDING your precious time. Each minute you waste is a minute you’ll never get back. As a small business owner, I don’t always know where to go to get the best resources or to find the best answers; does any of this sound familiar? Because if it does, you really need to listen to the team at NAMS. They are some serious time hawks. They get more done in an hour than most people do all week long.
How do they do it? Well, luckily for us, they have recorded a video presentation explaining exactly that and right now we can get access for free. This was a special presentation given to their membership group so I wouldn’t be surprised to see it go away very soon so take the time to have a look before they take it down and let’s make 2018 our most productive year ever.
To watch the presentation, click here: http://warr.us/4TTAff and let’s become more productive this year 😀