There's this thing about productivity that gets in all of our way once in a while. Its the idea that we have to do MORE!
- How much can we cram into every minute of every day?
- Can we mark off of more things on our to-do lists?
- Is it possible to complete one more project?
- How many people can we say yes to?
- How perfect can we be?
The problem is, after a certain point, the more we try to do, the less we get done. Now, Im right there with you, I tend to be more productive the more things I have to work on because I stop putting things off because I can always do it later. This only works to a point though. Remember, time management isnt about output, its about input.
Its time to start doing LESS by trying these techniques:
Write a Not-to-do list instead of a Get-to-do list.
For one week, write down all of the things you will NOT do. These should be things you are consciously choosing to let go of for the week (if not longer). Think things that zap your time and energy, like browsing Facebook, spending too long on a phone call with someone who is only complaining or getting lost in TV shows that dont make you feel better after watching them.
Choose your communication wisely.
Is that message better sent via email or discussed by phone? Will there be a lack of understanding if you send that text message or will you be on the phone too long if you dont just shoot a quick reply via email? The right communication delivery can save you tremendous amounts of time.
While I did not write this one first, it is NUMBER 1. If you aren't getting enough sleep, it drains your energy levels all day and makes you less likely to do things quickly and efficiently. You will get more done in less time if you get a good amount of sleep.
The Pareto Principle can help save you time.
If you take time to evaluate where you spend the 20% of your time that results in the 80% of your success, you can choose to do more of that and get dramatically greater results with less overall effort.
Use the 60 minute rule.
If you are faced with a challenge or receive an angry email or social media post, do nothing for 60 minutes. Once 60 minutes has passed, you can then choose how to respond. We often get sucked in to battles that take far more time than wed like when we respond instantly rather than let the issue rest for a while.
The afternoon nap or meditation.
That after lunch fatigue can have a huge negative effect on our productivity. However, if we choose to do nothing but nap or meditate for as little as 20 minutes, we can recover faster from the mid afternoon slump and get back to being highly productive.
Calculate the cost.
What is the overall benefit of each task towards your personal and business goals? Choose only those tasks that have a high payoff and low cost.
There you have it. Seven solid ways you can do LESS and be more productive.