“Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort.” Paul Meyer
In this day and age it can be difficult to be productive and stay on top of things. Just like everyone else, this is something I struggle with. Whether it’s social media, Netflix or YouTube videos, there are always distractions which if I’m not careful can waste hours of my time.
The battle for focus is very real but with the right mindset and approach it is a battle we can almost definitely win.
Here are 5 tips which have enabled me to be more productive and make the most of my time.
1. Start with prayer
As a Christian I find that one of the best things I can do to increase productivity is to start off the day with prayer. Praying even just for 5 minutes in the morning helps me to keep things in perspective and remember what is important in life – honouring God in all I do. Even when it seems like I am overwhelmed with tasks, praying and reminding myself that God is in control of everything helps me to keep calm and get through my workload.
Make a To-do list ranking the tasks in order of importance and set yourself realistic deadlines for your work. I find that doing this helps me to remain focused throughout the day and helps me to think more clearly when it comes down to working. Try to focus on the more challenging tasks first and get them out the way. However, try not to be too ambitious: don’t set yourself too many tasks for one day or plan to write an essay in half an hour. Being reasonable and prioritising your workload will definitely increase your productivity.
3. Focus on the task in hand
“A person who chases two rabbits catches neither”
I often find myself switching from task to task trying to get as many things completed as possible but this usually just leads to a bunch of unfinished/half finished tasks and ultimately does not accomplish much. I’ve found that a more effective approach is to give my undivided attention to one job/task and only when I have done all I can, I move onto something different.
4. Do it now (not later)
After a long day of school/work the last thing I want to do is start working again. It’s so much easier to relax and give into the temptation of procrastination – but this really only leads to wasted time. So recently I have been making an effort to go directly to my work which leaves me feeling much more accomplished.
If I’m honest, this is something I find difficult and I’ll often find myself putting off work up until the very last minute. But sometimes the main issue is really just starting. Try not to think too much about it and simply start working. Once you get the ball rolling you will get through your tasks in no time.
5. Take breaks
It’s great to set yourself guidelines and goals but if you’re too rigid and do not ever take time to rest, you will no doubt end up procrastinating and feeling overworked. Taking 15-20 minute breaks is something which helps me to stay focused and keep up my energy levels.
Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men