Procrastination can strike virtually anyone. On top of that, it can take several forms. It may make you avoid work entirely, tell yourself you can’t work until you don’t get perfect conditions or you have so much to do that it overwhelms you. In such a situation, putting things off can seem satisfying but trust me, it’s temporary. What you are actually doing is self-sabotaging yourself. Don’t worry, we all have days like these. But you can clear the mess up with some productivity hacks.
I agree, productivity hacks can’t give you superpowers but they sure give the motivation that you need to get going. So, here we begin with 10 productivity hacks to crush your procrastination starting today:
1. Respect the time you have
‘Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones
we have been waiting for. We are the change that we seek,’- Barack Obama
Not many of us are good at valuing our time. Once you start believing that you have very limited time, you will use it wisely too.
2. Get rid of online temptations
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, WhatsApp and other forms of social media can make time fly like an arrow. To be honest, the internet is tempting and it can keep you from your goals of the day. So do yourself a favor and set aside all the temptations, even your phone. Log out of your emails, use apps to block web browsing and put your phone on silence.
3. Phrase the priority
When you have lots of things on your to-do list, you often end up wishing there were more hours in the day. This happens when there are unnecessary items on your list. Take a piece of paper and write everything down that you need to do in the day in the right order. Put the hardest task at the top. Get rid of the pointless tasks from your list, clear your schedule and focus on stuff that really matters.
4. Stay organized
Being disorganized is costly in terms of both time and money. But if you just slow down and organize, you will be amazed to see the Return on Investment.
‘For every minute spent organizing, an hour is earned.’ – Benjamin Franklin
According to experts, every hour spent on planning saves you 3-4 hours which would be wasted otherwise. The question is how can you stay organized? Here are some examples:
- Don’t let your desk clutter
- Don’t respond to emails as soon as they arrive. Set a time to respond to all emails.
- Work on one thing at a time
- Eat the frog
- Plan your day the night before
5. Set realistic goals
If you want to think big, it’s great, you have every right to be a dreamer. However, you shouldn’t overlook your capacity to achieve what you have in your head.
We tend to procrastinate on the goals that are far out of reach. So be realistic and make small millstones for your long-term goals. Don’t forget to be specific when it comes to listing down your goals. The more specific you are, the more motivated you become and hence you get closer to achieving your goals.
6. Focus on 5 goals per day
It is impossible to get anything done if there is so much on your to-do list. It will just stress you out and at the end you won’t even get a single thing done. The best way to avoid this is to keep things simple. Don’t have more than 5 goals set for the day.
7. Make yourself accountable
Sometimes, we need someone to watch over us and help us stay on a task. You can’t be productive until you make yourself accountable. You can either use a friend, a co-worker or an app here. This needs to be done several times a day; it can be a morning pep talk or an update on the work status in the afternoon. You can place restrictions on yourself too. For instance, for every hour spent procrastinating, commit that you will donate Rs.100 in charity.
8. Give yourself a break
A mind that procrastinates wants to do everything other than work. There are countless opportunities to distract you. Whenever you feel you have trouble concentrating (whether it is because you are checking Facebook minute after minute or because you are anxious), just take 20 minutes break. While you are on the break, get absorbed in as much distraction as you can, but once 20 minutes pass, get to work.
9. Do a 10-min workout in the morning
Exercising increases productivity. If you haven’t been working out, then it is time to change your routine. Go for a jog outdoors. Don’t feel like running outside? No problem, Walk on the treadmill instead. If you can’t afford a treadmill, no problem again, there are lots of workout routines that don’t need equipment. Look for them on YouTube.
10. Prepare for Monday on Friday
I know, I know, you must be thinking ‘how can I possibly think of Monday on Friday.’ Trust me, it is going to be worth it if you want to boost productivity.
You don’t really have to make a to-do list for Monday, but you can set an objective for what you need to do. Take last 25 minutes from your Friday for getting organized for the upcoming week. When you come to work on Monday, you will be glad you have a rough idea of what you need to do. In short, you will be prepared for Monday.
When you are done with your day, set a clear end-time from work and relax. You will be more focused the next day. In the middle of it all, don’t forget to be nice to yourself. Don’t call yourself lazy and erode your self-esteem. Adopt a positive attitude along with following these hacks and you will see a big change in your productivity pretty soon.