Time management is an important, but hard skill to acquire. It is so easy to get distracted or be unmotivated when there is work that needs to be done. Here are a eight techniques to have more productive days:
Plan out your day and make a physical to-do list
The first thing you should do in the morning is plan out everything you want to accomplish that day. This will mentally prepare yourself for your workload. Keeping a physical to-do list will help keep you on track and remind you of everything you need to do on a particular day. Seeing what you have to do will help you stay productive. You should write down everything that you want to do that day, including non-work activities, such as going to the gum or taking your son to soccer practice.
Use an agenda or calendar.
Mark down the times that you have meetings and appointments. Put your to-do list in your agenda or calendar. This allows you to see what you have to look forward to in the next couple of weeks.
Put your phone away
Cellphones can be very distracting. Unless you are expecting an important call, or have a reason to have your phone on your desk, then you should keep it in your desk. That way, you won’t be tempted to scroll through social media.
Refrain from multi-tasking.
Finish one job at a time. Your mind loses focus on one task when you switch to another. You will forget where you were when you try to go back to the original task. Also, don’t listen to music. There have been multiple studies showing that listening to music doesn’t help you accomplish tasks, but helps you lose focus.
Start off with a small, easy task.
Starting your day off with a simple task will allow you to check off an assignment in just a quick matter of time. You will already feel productive and more motivated to get through your list.
After you finish a big task, complete a few small tasks.
Switching from one long task to a few smaller tasks will release endorphins at a quicker rate. Endorphins trigger a positive feeling, making you feel good about yourself.
Take a break periodically.
Give your brain some time to relax in between tasks. Go get a healthy snack or walk down the hall for a few minutes.