How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

There are many elements associated with high levels of productivity. Ask any given person how to be productive and you’re most likely going to be inundated with a plethora of suggestions. But at its core, productivity comes down to your energy and flow state (or being “in the zone,” as some call it).

Without those two elements, it’s impossible to be your most productive self. Getting those two elements firing on all cylinders doesn’t need to be complicated. In fact, implementing these five tiny tweaks to your daily routine will set you on the right path.

1. Start and end your day like Benjamin Franklin.

The daily and meticulous routine of this historical figure has been well-documented. While his daily schedule is the most popular thing that people share from his autobiography, the biggest benefit to my productivity has come from implementing his two daily questions.

During breakfast, Franklin asked himself, “What good shall I do this day?” and at night, he asked, “What good have I done today?”

If you’re anything like me, you probably have an ambitious and aggressive daily to-do list that can sometimes become bloated with actions that aren’t moving the needle forward. Asking these two questions will help you remove what’s unnecessary from your day and overall work life.

Anchoring your day with these two questions keeps your goal top of mind and leads to a higher probability that you’ll stay in alignment with what you’re trying to achieve.

2. Go to sleep and wake up at the same times.

In an effort to get more done, many entrepreneurs are tempted to cut sleep. This approach is counterproductive. While you’re sleeping, not only are you recovering from your daily activities but you’re also consolidating your memories and new information into long-term knowledge.

As humans, we’re creatures of habit, and finding a consistent sleep rhythm is pivotal. The habit that delivers the largest ROI to improving your sleep and energy, according to a Fitbit study in March 2017, is to consistently go to sleep around the same time.

One to two hours daily of lost sleep quietly wreaks havoc on your productivity and energy. Pick a consistent sleep time and wake-up time that also allow you enough time in the morning to slowly ease into the day.

3. Consume quality food and water before coffee.

Your car isn’t going to make it far without fuel, and you’re not going to perform at a high level without quality nutrients in your body. It’s not just food. It’s water, also.

In fact, being dehydrated by as little as 1 percent can lead to a decrease in positive mood and cognitive abilities, according to a study published in The Journal of Nutrition in February 2012.

Before reaching for your morning espresso, properly rehydrate by drinking 20 to 32 ounces of water. To save time, I have a morning smoothie that has my water and fruits and vegetables all thrown in together.

4. Schedule and name your work sessions.

It’s imperative to get into a flow state in which you’re completely focused on the task at hand. A random mental trick I learned more than a year ago is to name my work sessions. Give them specific names and objectives.

If you think about it, we’re playing numerous roles and characters in our day-to-day life. Why not bring that spirit to our work? Instead of thinking that you have to write each morning, create an avatar and specific mission for your writing.

5. Take breaks to reenergize yourself.

This can look different to each of us. However, what’s most important is to separate yourself from your work and de-stress. This time is ideal for a walk in nature, eating some healthy food, making a green juice, finding funny materials to get some laughs in, or listening to an audiobook to stay inspired.

Some people like the 25-minute Pomodoro technique, but I prefer longer work sessions and then a break. Think and act like a scientist, and experiment until you find your winning regimen.

If you desire to create more energy and become more productive, start with addressing the tiny and everyday habits before adding more complex tactics to your life.

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

Are you looking for a way of making yourself more productive? If yes then you are probably wondering if there is any magic pill you can to take to become more productive. I can’t promise you a magic pill, but I can provide you with a set of tiny tweaks that can make you do more with less effort.

Sleep More

Yeah, you heard it right, you need to sleep more. On the contrary to what everyone believes you don’t have pull all-nighters. Staying awake whole night to finish a task is not the best way to achieve more. All-nighters are for heroes, but we are trying to be more productive not a hero.

Not sleeping a whole night doesn’t mean that there are tons of work to do. It means you are not utilising your time efficiently during the day. If you are staying up late in the night and working, it indicates that you are not productive at all. If you were productive, you would have time to play Fortnite rather than working until late.

You need sleep to be more creative or innovative. If you are thinking what does creativity has to do with being productive? Let me tell you this, being creative is a great way of being productive. Creative people are the most efficient ones, they can solve a problem and get things done faster with 10x less effort. Creativity is a hell of a boost to your productivity.

Think about it like this, two guys are trying to build a pyramid. One of them is the hero type; he is working all day long, using all his energy to pulling stones and piling them up so that he can finish construction.

The second guy is the creative type. He is not working all day long, and he gets his sleep. He is trying to find a way to get things done faster. He builts a towering machine to complete his pyramid, and he builds his pyramid a lot more quickly with less effort.

Do you see how creativity helps? If you can finish your tasks ten times faster with ten times less energy, wouldn’t that allow you to start working on other things and increase your productivity?

Your brain needs sleep to fuel if you want to be creative just SLEEP.

Don’t be the guy who tries to climb on top of the mountain, be the guy who builds an elevator to go up there.

Give Yourself Alone Time

Are you one of these people who look very busy but you can’t get any work done? You know the reason for this situation, don’t you? You get interrupted. You can’t focus because you have meetings every hour, or your phone keeps ringing, or your buddy is sending you a picture from Instagram.

Give yourself some alone time. No meetings, no texting, no social media. Take a break for 2 hours, and you will boost your productivity. I know its hard to give up from things like social media, but if you can drop it for 2 hours, you will have more spare time to spend on social media later on because you will get things done a lot faster while you are away from distractions.

Give yourself some alone it, imagine that you are on a plane, no phones allowed. Use this excuse to get away from your friends for 2 hours. It has two benefits, you will become very productive and you will sound like a cool guy who is always on the business trip.

Stay Motivated

If you want to be productive, you need to stay motivated. Motivation is the key, but you need to keep the momentum going as well. Staying motivated all the time is a hard thing to do. Without motivation, it’s tough to excel at what you are doing.

I keep my motivation up by breaking down my tasks. If a task requires a long time to finish, I break it down to small parts so I can complete them in a shorter amount of time. This strategy allows me to keep my momentum up, completing a task even if its small gives a sense of accomplishment.

Knowing that you finished a task makes you feel like a winner and keeps your motivation up, keep accomplishing small victories on the way to feed your momentum.

Staying motivated while trying to be productive is like staying hydrated during a marathon

Say No

Remember a time when your manager gave you so many tasks on Friday and asked you to finish them by Monday? If you said YES and pulled all-nighters to complete your tasks but you still failed, then congratulations you are a HERO but not PRODUCTIVE.

You need to learn to say no. When you already have a lot to do, taking more tasks is not going to help you. When you have too much on your shoulder you are going to be stressed therefore you are not going to be productive.

Know your limits and don’t exceed it. Just say no next time, but do it politely and explain your reasons well. Explain that you have too much to do already and taking more workload will yield low productivity.

A s Americans, we’ve long held to the misconception that, in order to be successful, we must postpone or even sacrifice our happiness. Not long ago, a student dropped out of the “Psychology of Happiness” course that a colleague and I co-founded at Stanford University, claiming that the syllabus went against everything she had ever learned. The young woman’s parents had taught her that the only way to gage if you are working hard enough is if you are suffering.

It’s no wonder that U.S. workers—millennials, too—are burning out at an alarming rate: Nearly half of us intentionally limit our fun, according to a recent survey by Chase Freedom Unlimited.

America is facing a fun gap. But ironically, this is making us less successful.

In researching my book The Happiness Track, I saw that we have it all wrong. When we value our happiness—and also the happiness of those around us—we become more productive, more focused, more resilient, more charismatic and more influential—not to mention more innovative, too. That’s not all. The ability to have fun improves our relationships, helping us connect with our colleagues, family and friends more easily, and even makes us more attractive to others.

Simply put, being happier is the secret to success, not the other way around.

The best part of this “have more fun” prescription is that it doesn’t take much to change your day, your mood and your perspective on life.

Based on my research of the science of happiness, here are three simple ways to add more fun to your day:

1. Do something nice for someone else

Next time you buy your morning coffee, pick up a treat for a coworker, too. Research suggests that this kind of selflessness makes you feel happier and even boosts your health. It also improves your relationships and gives you a sense of meaning and purpose that further increases your wellbeing.

2. Do something nice for yourself

Affordable pleasures are all around you. They can be as simple as adding extra sprinkles to ice cream.

Written by Sean McPheat |

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to makeFor many salespeople, LinkedIn is a bit of an anomaly; they know that many people can be found on it (over 351 million people, at the time of writing), but they don’t have the time or knowledge to develop their profile as it hasn’t brought them any business.

Your profile can be as good or as bad as you want it to be. If you see it as ‘ the sales professional’s Facebook ’ you may be missing the point and missing opportunities.

Your LinkedIn profile can often be left neglected and unloved, as other seemingly more important things take precedent over what is essentially a background portfolio for many salespeople. But just a few tweaks, one or two small changes, may make you stand out from a big crowd.

Here are just three little things you can do that may make a big difference:

Your Professional Headline should make people aware of what you can do for them

Many people’s Professional Headline simply acts like a business card. Saying something like ‘sales Consultant at ABC Ltd’ or ‘ Business Manager with XYZ’ says nothing about what you can do for people.

Instead, you Headline should shout out how you help businesses succeed or what results you have got for companies. You have up to 120 characters to convince people why they should approach and use you. Think of it as your ‘elevator speech’ that can be said in just a few words.

An example is: ‘Sales at A Printers Ltd – I help SME’s reduce their printing costs by 24%’

Here’s another: ‘BDM at BA Coach – helping people be the best they can be! Trainer, Speaker, Coach & Customer Service Specialist’

Your Headline goes with you everywhere; when you ask someone to connect, when you place a comment in a group, when you request information, when you share an article with a client or prospect, and a myriad other times.

A great Headline that says how you help companies or people to succeed will attract more interest, especially if it’s something intriguing. Think: How do I help businesses succeed? What would make people sit up and say ‘Wow, I need to talk to this person’? Use those 120 characters wisely!

Your summary should make people think ‘I want to know more!’

Many people use their LinkedIn summary like a CV, outlining what they do or what they’ve done.

Instead, write it so that you answer the following questions:

  1. What results have I achieved for companies and individuals?
  2. How have those results benefitted businesses and others?
  3. What skills do I have that will be useful to others?
  4. If you worked with me, this is what you would get

Write your summary in the first person, and make it original, outlining why the viewer of your profile should get in contact with you. It’s your opportunity to get leads coming proactively to you, instead of making hard work of cold-calling and the challenges that brings.

Get recommendations! – They act as your testimonials and referrals!

The ‘Recommendations’ section is probably one of the most neglected parts of the LinkedIn profile and it’s easy to see why. Most people are unwilling to ask someone to recommend them as it seems too pushy or rude.

However, a healthy list of recommendations can be used to show prospects how you have helped others in similar industries or situations. Imagine having a portfolio stuffed full of people’s positive comments of how you’ve benefited their businesses. Wouldn’t you be willing to show that to everyone who asked? Then why hold back from asking for a quick recommendation from a client you’ve helped?

It’s easy. You can either make a quick recommendation for someone else and ask them to return the compliment; or you can write a quick three or four lines for a client, send it to them, ask them to make any necessary changes and add it to your profile.

A large number of recommendations is like a suite of testimonials saying how good you have been to them. When someone asks why they should use you, you can quickly send them to your LinkedIn profile, get them to click on ‘recommendations’ and there is a list of satisfied customers who wax lyrically about the results you have achieved for them.

These simple tips can make a real difference to the amount of business you can attract. If you’d like to know how MTD can help you with your LinkedIn account, contact us and we’ll give you the lowdown on how to make your profile stand out.

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

  • Small changes to your daily routine can make you a lot happier.
  • Those changes include journaling, practicing gratitude, and even ordering takeout dinner.
  • We collected a list of 10-minute tweaks you can make starting today, and why they’re helpful.

Sometimes it’s the big things that make us happy — the birth of a child, an impressive promotion, winning the lottery.

But other times, it’s the small things. Think capturing the most beautiful photo of a flower garden on your way to work, or hugging a friend you haven’t seen in a while.

It’s the second type of happiness boosters that we’re focusing on here. Below, Business Insider has rounded up seven tweaks to your daily routine — all of which take 10 minutes or less — that can make you happier, healthier, and more productive. Read on for ideas you can implement starting today.

Jot down your thoughts and feelings

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

Author and investor Tim Ferris recommends jotting down your thoughts in a journal every morning.

Ferris uses “The Artist’s Way Morning Pages Journal” by Julia Cameron, and emphasizes that the process of writing matters more than the final product. What’s more, journaling allows you to get fears and worries out of your head so you can stop fixating on them.

Another journal option is the “Five Minute Journal,” which comes with inspirational quotations and thought-provoking questions.

You can switch things up and journal in the evening if that’s more convenient.

Chat with a fellow commuter

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

A 2014 study, published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, found that people are much happier during their commutes when they engage another passenger in conversation.

Still, most people surveyed said they expected their commute to be less positive and productive if they talked to a stranger.

If you can get over the fear that you’d be bothering someone else, you might be doing them — and yourself — a favor.

Take one beautiful photo on your way to work

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

That’s a tip from Mo Gawdat, who is an executive at Alphabet’s moonshot lab, X, and the author of “Solve for Happy.” Every day during his walk to the office, Gawdat searches for something beautiful and snaps its photo.

The idea behind searching for one perfect photo is that it prevents Gawdat from thinking distressing thoughts, since he’s fully engaged in searching for beauty. He calls it a form of meditation: Instead of focusing on his breath, or a spot on the wall in front of him, he’s focusing on the world around him.

Plan something joyful for tomorrow

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

Forcing yourself to be happy generally backfires.

A 2014 study, published in the journal Emotion, found that the key is “prioritizing positivity,” or structuring your day so that it includes activities that are likely to make you happy.

To schedule your days to maximize happiness, study co-author Lahnna I. Catalino told Scientific American you should “reflect on the activities that bring you contentment or joy and make time for these events in your daily life. For some people, this could mean regularly setting aside time for gardening and cooking; for others, it could mean making time to connect with good friends.”

The idea is not to force yourself to feel any specific way at any given moment.

Set one priority for this evening

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

It’s tempting to waste the hours after you get home from work — you’re tired and there aren’t any hard deadlines to meet like there are at the office.

So productivity expert and author Laura Vanderkam recommends setting one (simple) priority for every weekday evening. Maybe you want to go for a walk with your family after dinner, or call a friend, or read 100 pages of a novel, or go to a gym class.

Vanderkam said: “It is very easy to come home after work and just feel like, well, I’m too tired to do anything. But you have several hours then that are going and you will never get that back.”

Consider outsourcing a chore

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

A recent cross-cultural study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, found that people who spend money to save time tend to be happier than those who don’t. Think paying for a meal-kit service or hiring a house cleaner.

Interestingly, few people surveyed said they would spend a hypothetical sum of money on services that would save them time, suggesting that most of us aren’t aware of this connection.

Ordering takeout for breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day might be going overboard. But sending out your laundry today and having a Task Rabbit assemble that bookshelf tomorrow might save you a headache in the long run.

List three things you’re grateful for

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

The “three good things” exercise was developed by psychologist Martin Seligman and colleagues. Here’s how it works, according to UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center:

Every night before bed, write down three things that went well for you, along with an explanation of why they went well. The good things can be as seemingly small as your partner taking out the garbage or as big as getting a promotion. Make sure you include as much detail as possible, as well as how the event made you feel.

Seligman and colleagues found that people who used the three good things exercise felt happier and less depressed for six months.

Again, you can do the same exercise in the morning, if that works better for you.

How do you feel at the end of a day when you’ve been very productive? It feels good right? So why not focus the end of this year on ways to be more productive in the new year? This can involve using the right tools but it also involves many other things.

Here are twenty-one ideas for increasing your productivity, as well as making the most of any type of productivity app, software or strategy.

Start with the Most Important Productivity Strategy

Before installing any productivity tool, first determine which part of your business you need to systematize and hand off. Look for the most:

  • Time-consuming part of your business
  • Energy-draining tasks of your business
  • Area of your business where you lose the most money
  • Area of your business that makes you feel as if you’ve wasted hours

Start with a productivity tool that takes care of the most urgent areas—be that scheduling, customer support, billing or all of the above—and fit your solution to meet that need with as few tools—or steps—as possible.

Stop the Endless Cycle

Do you buy course after course, promising yourself you’re going to “master” an area of your business that is not second nature to you? Do you have courses and eBooks on your computer that you’ve never completed (or perhaps never even started?)

These are big clues to your ‘weak’ areas—the ones you should waste no more time on, but immediately outsource or automate.

Learn to be Mindful and In the Moment

If you’ve made a commitment to be more aware of your business overview and vanquish self-sabotaging habits, then pay attention to that commitment. If you find yourself doing time-waster tasks on autopilot, or spending hours trying to tweak one headline, or letting time slip away on Facebook—stop. Take frequent reality checks during the day. Get up from your computer, and take a moment to appreciate the weather outside (bad or good); the comforts of your office; even the fact that you are alive and breathing.

Doing this can help you break bad habits—as long as you make this your new habit!

Underestimate on Purpose

Perfectionists have a lot of bad habits. The worst one? Being a perfectionist! Stop overestimating your ability to be super-entrepreneur. Keep your to-do list essentials simple: No more than three key tasks per day. Then time those three things; at least for a few weeks.

After you’ve concluded this experiment, start allotting a time frame to each task, based on the actual time-frames. And if something takes too long? Automate or outsource!

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to makeSync Your To-do List with Your Scheduling Software or Calendar

Reserve some appointment slots for yourself, to accomplish tasks you have to do yourself. You should actually put these on your calendar or task list so they don’t get pushed to the back burner.

Create Templates and Checklists for Recurring Tasks

Checklists and templates provide a quick way to make sure you create consistency in your content and communications. They also save time, and allow you to hand off completion to assistants.

Plan to Repurpose Everything

Every step you take as an entrepreneur—down to even making mistakes—is fodder for sharing. So make sure you take notes, keep a daily journal and/or record as much as you can, keeping in mind how to repurpose it later.

Shut All Your Browser Tabs Down

We all do it—have a gazillion tabs open while working. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed and muddled, shut them all down and start afresh.

Do Your Most Important and/or Most Unpleasant Task First

Procrastinators do the most important or most unpleasant task last. Do these tasks first and get them out of the way, and you’ll be more energized as you step into the rest of the day.

Be Proactive: Not Reactive

Too many entrepreneurs get caught up in chasing around after clients and after the latest business ‘fashion’. Focus instead on the lifestyle you want, plan your steps to achieving it and set healthy boundaries. Focus on that—not on mastering the latest Webinar platform or letting clients trample on your boundaries.

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

Break Major Goals into Tiny Bites

It’s far easier to reach the other side of the country one step at a time, rather than focusing on how far away and unreachable it feels.

Celebrate each step, and celebrate key milestones along the way even more. And remember that even the most famous musician in the world had to learn to keep at it, and learn one lesson at a time.

Un-train Your Brain

We have now hard-wired ourselves, quite literally, to multi-task—something that as of recent years has been venerated. Psychologists have proved that multi-tasking dissipates energy and makes us feel duller and more confused later in the day. Furthermore, multi-tasking drops IQs by an average of 5 points, according to one source.

Focus on one task at a time, and shut off (and out) all other distractions.

Keep Things Fun

It’s not rocket science to note that we humans tend to abandon activities or tools that are stressful, difficult or boring. No matter what new habits or tools you decide to use to increase productivity, make sure that you find them easy to adopt—and fun to use.

Productivity is really just another way to make sure your quality of life—as well as your business and your relationships with others—rocks. Being truly productive keeps you energized, inspired and heading straight towards your dreams.

Is Digital Noise Impacting Your Business and Health?

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

Digital noise is a real thing. It’s all those distractions coming from our phones and computers that prevent us from focusing on the important things in life, like our businesses, health, or loved ones. Take this self assessment to determine if digital noise is affecting your life.

Many of us are familiar with the maxim “Don’t mistake activity for productivity.” It refers to people who juggle multiple tasks, under the guise of staying busy all the time, without ever inching towards their goal. Their time is completely wasted in thinking about what to do next—leaving no time for the actual job at hand.

To bring a renewed sense of productivity to your work life, we offer this list of 7 ways to use your time more wisely.

Related: 5 ways sleep can boost your productivity

1. Prioritize your projects

Prioritization is not only about completing more tasks within a stipulated time frame; it also refers to eliminating unnecessary tasks. Planning and prioritizing offer clarity of thought when you feel like procrastinating. When backed by strong reasoning, prioritization empowers you to focus on the most important target, while shelving unimportant work for later.

2. Know yourself—and avoid comparing yourself to others

It’s up to each individual to discover their most productive time of the day. For some, early mornings bring a rush of energy, while for others, late evenings prove best for tasks that demand concentration and mental agility. This self-awareness relieves the confusion of how and when to engage in focused work, helping you make the most of your time.

Work as though you’re running your own race. Your thoughts and efforts should be focused on completing the task at hand—not getting bogged down by others’ expectations or worrying about how they will meet their own deadlines. Do away with the urge to seek validation or compare yourself to others, and pour that time and energy back into your own work. The results of your work will be better, and you’ll avoid a lot of unnecessary stress along the way.

3. Make time for your passions

A clear-cut timetable that balances work with play is imperative to striking the right work-life balance. Irrespective of the task, everyone should engage in hobbies and sports occasionally to bring variety, excitement and rejuvenation into their lives. Good hobbies are effective stress-busters, so make space for them in your daily or weekly timetable. Not only does it give you something to look forward to, but you’ll be more relaxed and prepared to tackle the day when you return to work.

4. Unlock the power of saying “No”

Don’t bite off more than you can chew. While proving one’s competence at work is always a concern nagging at even the most accomplished of us, it’s important to be firm in setting realistic boundaries about what you can and can’t deliver. We all have our limits, and if you think you’re going to burnout from work stress, learning to say “No” to extra assignments will save you in the long run. Rather than spreading yourself thin across a variety of projects, you can dedicate yourself to excelling with your most important ones.

5. Resist the urge to multitask

Doing one thing at a time is the secret behind improved productivity. When we’re in a race against the clock, we’re all tempted to indulge in multitasking, hoping to complete several jobs within a stipulated time. But none of us deliver our best work this way. The lack of focus and concentration impairs the quality of our creativity, our decision making, and our results. Errors could even lead to repeat work, which defeats the whole point of saving time in the first place.

If you have several items to focus on within the same day, try segmenting your work time into short, focused bursts. The Pomodoro method is a popular strategy where you spend 25 minutes working and 5 resting. This way, you’re still focusing when it counts, but also giving yourself the freedom to jump between different tasks.

6. Use reminders to stay motivated

The clock is ticking, and with every passing moment, you should be moving closer to meeting your deadlines. When every second counts, it’s critical to stay motivated. Staying motivated will help you push yourself and inspire you to reach ever further to accomplish your goals.

What motivates you? Write it down, and take a moment to review whenever you feel yourself flagging. You might even bring photos to your workplace that remind you of what you’re trying to achieve. Maybe it’s photos of your family, a gorgeous vacation destination, or an aspirational business card. Having a tangible reminder of what motivates you can provide that last burst of energy you need to cross the finish line.

7. Be honest about your progress

Did your work today bring you closer to your goals, or did you just have a busy day? Honest introspection should become a daily practice as you find out which productivity methods work best for you. Take a few moments at the end of each day to meditate on what went well and what didn’t. Consider taking notes so you can tweak your methods as you go along.

There’s much pleasure to be had in this time-bound journey called life, and it’s important to live each moment to the best of your ability. Discipline and repetition form the key to transforming your habits. We hope these tips help you enjoy more productive and fulfilling days.

Want to save even more time? Lucidpress makes it easy to create beautifully branded content in a matter of minutes.

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Brian Zeng

Brian Zeng is the owner of Ponbee.com. He is an entrepreneur by spirit. Brian likes to share his insights on an array of topics related to business, e-commerce, digital marketing & entrepreneurship. For example, his recent collection of inspirational quotes by highly successful people will surely help you to see failure & success in a different perspective.

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How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

  • Small changes to your daily routine can make you a lot happier.
  • Those changes include journaling, practicing gratitude, and even ordering takeout dinner.
  • We collected a list of 10-minute tweaks you can make starting today, and why they’re helpful.

Sometimes it’s the big things that make us happy — the birth of a child, an impressive promotion, winning the lottery.

But other times, it’s the small things. Think capturing the most beautiful photo of a flower garden on your way to work, or hugging a friend you haven’t seen in a while.

It’s the second type of happiness boosters that we’re focusing on here. Below, Business Insider has rounded up seven tweaks to your daily routine — all of which take 10 minutes or less — that can make you happier, healthier, and more productive. Read on for ideas you can implement starting today.

Jot down your thoughts and feelings

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

Author and investor Tim Ferris recommends jotting down your thoughts in a journal every morning.

Ferris uses “The Artist’s Way Morning Pages Journal” by Julia Cameron, and emphasizes that the process of writing matters more than the final product. What’s more, journaling allows you to get fears and worries out of your head so you can stop fixating on them.

Another journal option is the “Five Minute Journal,” which comes with inspirational quotations and thought-provoking questions.

You can switch things up and journal in the evening if that’s more convenient.

Chat with a fellow commuter

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

A 2014 study, published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, found that people are much happier during their commutes when they engage another passenger in conversation.

Still, most people surveyed said they expected their commute to be less positive and productive if they talked to a stranger.

If you can get over the fear that you’d be bothering someone else, you might be doing them — and yourself — a favor.

Take one beautiful photo on your way to work

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

That’s a tip from Mo Gawdat, who is an executive at Alphabet’s moonshot lab, X, and the author of “Solve for Happy.” Every day during his walk to the office, Gawdat searches for something beautiful and snaps its photo.

The idea behind searching for one perfect photo is that it prevents Gawdat from thinking distressing thoughts, since he’s fully engaged in searching for beauty. He calls it a form of meditation: Instead of focusing on his breath, or a spot on the wall in front of him, he’s focusing on the world around him.

Plan something joyful for tomorrow

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

Forcing yourself to be happy generally backfires.

A 2014 study, published in the journal Emotion, found that the key is “prioritizing positivity,” or structuring your day so that it includes activities that are likely to make you happy.

To schedule your days to maximize happiness, study co-author Lahnna I. Catalino told Scientific American you should “reflect on the activities that bring you contentment or joy and make time for these events in your daily life. For some people, this could mean regularly setting aside time for gardening and cooking; for others, it could mean making time to connect with good friends.”

The idea is not to force yourself to feel any specific way at any given moment.

Set one priority for this evening

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

It’s tempting to waste the hours after you get home from work — you’re tired and there aren’t any hard deadlines to meet like there are at the office.

So productivity expert and author Laura Vanderkam recommends setting one (simple) priority for every weekday evening. Maybe you want to go for a walk with your family after dinner, or call a friend, or read 100 pages of a novel, or go to a gym class.

Vanderkam said: “It is very easy to come home after work and just feel like, well, I’m too tired to do anything. But you have several hours then that are going and you will never get that back.”

Consider outsourcing a chore

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

A recent cross-cultural study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, found that people who spend money to save time tend to be happier than those who don’t. Think paying for a meal-kit service or hiring a house cleaner.

Interestingly, few people surveyed said they would spend a hypothetical sum of money on services that would save them time, suggesting that most of us aren’t aware of this connection.

Ordering takeout for breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day might be going overboard. But sending out your laundry today and having a Task Rabbit assemble that bookshelf tomorrow might save you a headache in the long run.

List three things you’re grateful for

How to be more productive 4 tiny tweaks to make

The “three good things” exercise was developed by psychologist Martin Seligman and colleagues. Here’s how it works, according to UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center:

Every night before bed, write down three things that went well for you, along with an explanation of why they went well. The good things can be as seemingly small as your partner taking out the garbage or as big as getting a promotion. Make sure you include as much detail as possible, as well as how the event made you feel.

Seligman and colleagues found that people who used the three good things exercise felt happier and less depressed for six months.

Again, you can do the same exercise in the morning, if that works better for you.

Sergey Petrov

Even after reading hundreds of articles and motivational quotes, if you are stuck in a parallel world of your thoughts on how to boost your productivity, then you are at the right place. We are here to tell you some of the tips we feel can help improve productivity at your workspace.

Have you ever thought of being super productive today, and ended scrolling in your phone throughout the day? Sometimes even after working so hard, we can’t figure out why couldn’t we put our best foot forward today. If you apply these techniques, improving your productivity at work will be much easier.

How to be more productive at the workplace

1. Making it clutter-free:

The number one tip to boost productivity is to clear all the clutter in your workspace. The more clutter you will have in your workspace, you would be more stressed. Try to remove the papers lying on your desk from the last century and files which aren’t urgent. You can also scan and keep the electronic copy if you don’t want to search for it again. And also keep clutter away from your desktop so that you can focus on tasks that are essential and urgent. As per a survey conducted by OfficeMax, 77% of the working force said clutter damaged their productivity. You should make sure all your files are not in one place either physically or electronically. And don’t create too many subfolders that it makes a hard task to find the one you need. Also, follow a consistency between your local file system and electronic file system.

2. Add colors to your files

Science has proved that having color codes in your file system will let you stay organized. Your job will be a lot easier if you have color codes for your files. You will be able to find the data you need in no effort at all and be super productive. It can also change your mood and make you want to work even more.

3. Put a timer on your desk

More often, when we work, we quickly get disturbed by notifications on our phones or other distractions. The scientific way to deal with this problem is to work in small blocks of time. For example, you take out 25 minutes to do a specific task, put all your distractions away, and then take a 5-minute break to do whatever you want in it. And for that, you would need a timer so buy a good one and put it in front of your eyes so that you can keep a check on it.

4. Seed a plant

Sometimes little things add up planting a tree might seem to have no relation with productivity, but the people who have used this technique feel quite the opposite. Planting a tree makes your office livelier and increases workspace satisfaction. It will also give a cleaner air in your workspace, helping in having pleasant thoughts. As per a study, planting a tree at your workspace can increase productivity by 15%.

5. Outsource your minimal tasks

To get things done faster, you can also outsource your work like social media marketing or content writing jobs to other people. This way you can focus on better things, that are more important to you. One such company is Cannibals Media which you can outsource your content writing gigs.

6. Personalize your workspace

It is also advised to put personal items in your workspace to build up the connection with your office. But this doesn’t mean you put so much personal stuff that it looks clutter. Choose only those personal items which are meaningful and inspire you to work even more. You can also set your own goals on the wall which you want to achieve.

7. Paste your to-do list in front

Your to-do list for today should be the first thing you see when you start working. Make sure you make to the point crisp major tasks and compartmentalize your day based on those tasks. Most of the people start making a to-do list, but when they can’t complete it, they quit. But not leaving is a big success in itself. Don’t include too many impossible tasks, start with small jobs, and increase the intensity of functions day by day.

8. Comfortable Furniture

It sounds like a small thing but it can make or break your concentration level. Don’t spend too much on lavish furniture to make sure the colors aren’t too bright, the chairs are comfortable , and the table is friendly. A good chair will not be a pain in your back and let you concentrate freely.

9. Lighting

One more important factor often neglected by many is the lighting of your workspace. Ensure that appropriate light is at your workspace with accent lighting. Changes in lighting can decide your mood while working and also destress you when the work pressure is high. Choose lights that don’t harm your eyes and the environment.

Conclusion

So, we hope that if you follow these tips by heart, you can make your workspace super productive and perform your best. We often forget these things when we are finding the reasons for lousy unproductive days. But after following these tips, you will only get better at productivity. There is no way back.

And the most important thing to remember is to respect your workspace like a temple. Your workspace can make your career and life, so if you maintain it properly, do all the hard work, success will fall into its place.