Why is it that some people can get more done in a day than others? What differentiates us normal people from the movers and shakers of the world? We’re all allotted the same 24 hours per day, 7 days a week. Yet some of us struggle to keep up with tasks, while others are known for effectively tackling everything that is in their pipeline.
Is it time for you to start picking some of their habits, and start being more productive? If so, we have a list of 5 things that highly productive people do to stay efficient:
They Plan Ahead – Productive people are planners, either by nature or because they’ve realized that a day planned has a higher chance of going better than one unplanned. Think about your responsibilities for the day and week and allocate time in each day towards activities to meet them.
They Don’t Stretch Themselves To Thin – It can be hard….yes. Don’t be afraid to say no to new requests that you simply don’t have the bandwidth for. It’s better to turn things down, than accept and deliver them late or with less than stellar results. Television show producer extraordinaire Shonda Rhimes once mentioned in an interview that she had to become comfortable with telling people “No, I can’t do that”-and without explanation no less. Self-preservation is your biggest asset, and you’re biggest gatekeeper to your sanity.
They Stick Agendas – Meetings can be by far one of the biggest time wasters if agendas are not created or adhered to. From small talks to family plans, it’s super easy to get off-topic and go in various directions. Productive people make the most of meetings and address agenda items one by one, tabling any off-topic inquiries or suggestions until the end of the meeting.
They Prioritize Tasks – Who made this idiom, we have no idea. Hard or easy, make a list of things prioritized by importance, delivery date, and effort. We naturally tend to put off things that may not be particularly enjoyable to us, but this can lead to procrastination of the activities that we loathe. Get the hard stuff out of the way, and reward yourself when you’re done!
They Don’t Procrastinate – If you have time in between tasks to address something small (without it affecting your schedule that is) do it, don’t let small tasks add up to one big task that you have to set aside large blocks of time for. Tackle the small stuff on the way.
A good way to increase your productivity can also include self-monitoring. Are there certain times of the day when you’re more productive than others? Do you often have distractions that hinder your productivity. Start taking note of these things and then find ways to adjust your routine for improvement in these areas.