Productivity is one of those quests that seems to have no finish line. It is also a pursuit that is as varied as the people that focus on it. Getting more done in less time is on the mind of everyone who values what they do with their day.
What do you do now to stay productive?
I am going to focus on daily habits with this post, because I have seen the power that they have firsthand. If you do something new every day, after 90 days or so it becomes habit. The idea of doing this is much harder than actually doing it, but most people become defeated before they even try.
Here are 3 simple habits that can help improve your productivity:
Habit #1 – Write down your top five goals every day.
This sounds silly, but I promise that it is one of the most powerful things that you can ever do. Don’t knock it until you try it my friends. Once you write down and say your goals over and over again, you really start to believe them on a conscious and a subconscious level. This will influence your behavior and decision making in all that you do, because you become intentional about reaching your goals.
What does this have to do with productivity?
Everything. When you act with purpose and you are intently focused on reaching a single goal or a set of goals, you stop wasting your time on things that don’t matter. If you feel like you waste hours a day on meaningless activities, then try writing down your goals every day until things start to change. It costs you nothing and only requires a few minutes’ worth of effort. So if you are serious about increasing your productivity, you should give it a try.
Habit #2 – Keep a prioritized task list visible.
I have used apps, post-its, Google Calendar, Evernote and more. You will never guess what my preferred method of keeping my daily task list is, the white board in my home office. I can glance up there and see what I am trying to accomplish today, and then I get to erase each task as I complete it. It has been my most effective way of keeping a task list.
The method that you choose doesn’t matter at all though. Stick to what works for you, and just make sure that you use it. There is something powerful about writing something down that somehow makes it “real” to me. If nothing that you have tried has worked well for you, keep trying new things until you find your winner.
Habit #3 – Stick to your weekly schedule, no matter what.
In my business, I have a set release date for the content that I create each week. Do I ever get busy with other stuff? Almost always. Does something in my personal life get in the way? All of the time. Do I ever just want to go to sleep or take a day off? Yes, but the key is that I do it anyway.
If you are doing everything as the mood strikes you, it becomes a big mess. You may waste a lot of time on things that shouldn’t be very difficult to accomplish at all. A little routine is not a bad thing, as long as you are the one who gets to design it. I am a believer in “owning your process” because I know that this will lead to more engagement with the whole process.
I have a schedule with prospecting for new clients, working on projects, and various other aspect of the business too. These habits all create discipline and consistent action, and I am able to flat out get things done.
Daily habits are the foundation of everything that we do or don’t do. If you build the right ones and do so for the right reasons, like striving for an important goal, you will start to find yourself being much more productive with your time than ever before.