Let’s be honest, life is stressful. Falling behind on tasks adds to that stress. With work stress and personal stress, some days it just becomes too much to handle. Let’s take a look at how we can reduce stress by becoming more productive.
Being more productive is something we all can relate to. Who doesn’t want to accomplish more in a day? The one thing we all have in common is time: 24 hours in a day. How do we maximize those hours to get to a point of exceptional daily productivity — the kind that will make our colleagues jealous, our bosses proud and our friends secretly hate us?
We’ve all heard the expression, work smarter instead of harder, but what does that really mean? I’m smart, you’re smart, we are all smart — or so that’s what we want everyone to believe.
One area of focus to increase productivity is time. I’m not talking about time as in 24 hours in a day. I’m referring to time as in morning, afternoon or night. Our brains are more active at certain times of the day and are better at tackling specific tasks during those times.
For instance, I am not a morning person. In fact, I hate mornings! Before I can take on any of my daily tasks, I need at least one cup of coffee. I’m like a wild animal — proceed with caution until after that first cup of coffee has been consumed! You have been warned.
I am completely aware of this, so I don’t plan any important or detail-oriented tasks first thing in the morning. Once I’ve had that cup of coffee I am ready to take on the world. I have realized that my most focused time of day is mid-morning to early afternoon. This is when I plan to accomplish all of my important tasks for the day. By arranging my day around this time frame, I am able to get more accomplished.
Now, let’s focus on you. Over the next few days, try to spend some time determining what part of the day you are most focused. Once you have this time identified, arrange your schedule to accomplish the vast majority of your tasks during this time. Save the easier, less engaging tasks for a different time of day when your mind is not at its peak. After a week or so, evaluate to see if you have noticed improved productivity in your life, both personal and professional. If you haven’t, maybe you need to revise your ideal time of day or just increase your coffee intake!