You are busy. Every day feels shorter and it seems that there are not enough hours in a day to get everything done that you have to. You are so busy, you have to be productive, don’t you? Well, I have news for you. There is a huge difference between being busy and being productive.
If you are busy, you are doing a lot. If you are productive, you are getting a lot done towards reaching your goals.
So if you are only being busy at the moment, how can you become more productive? Here are 6 ways to make sure you are not busy but productive:
- Decide what your goals are and write them down. You need to see what your short-term goals, then medium term goals and then long-term goals are.
- Each day, choose the top 3 things you need to do that day to make sure that you get closer to reaching your immediate goal. Make these 3 things your top priority for the day and do not get distracted by anything until you have at least accomplished these goals for the day. If your goal is to write 3000 words on your novel for the day, do it. Don’t feel guilty because the dusting hadn’t been done yet. The dust will still be there when you have written your 3000 words.
- Do not get distracted by your inbox. I leave my e-mails for a specific time later during the day. Nothing is ever so urgent that you can’t attend to it a few hours or even a day later. By allowing yourself to get distracted from your own goals by incoming e-mails or other messages, you are fulfilling other people’s agendas instead of your own. When I open my e-mails first thing in the morning, I get bogged down reading e-mails, downloading other marketer’s manifestos and watching webinars all day, instead of doing the things I have to do to reach my own goals. So now I attend to my own priorities first before I allow myself to get involved in other people’s.
- It is important to get enough rest (8 hours sleep is the norm). But not only is the rest you get during the night important for your overall productivity. While working, you also need to take regular breaks. No matter how important the task you have at hand is, it is even more important (and more productive) to take a few minutes out of every hour to take a short walk, take a few breaths and maybe have a glass of water. Don’t stretch the break too long. About five minutes is enough to stretch your legs and get the blood to your brain going again.
- Stay fueled up. When we are really busy, we tend to forget about nourishment. Eating small meals during the day, keeps your blood sugar level and will help maintain your productivity. Now remember, a small meal does not mean a chocolate bar and a thick shake!
- Last but not least, don’t forget the water. Your brain conducts electric current and for this, it needs proper hydration. Health professionals disagree on this but the consensus seem to be that you need at least 250 ml water (one drinking glass) per 10 kg body weight per day. On hot or very dry days or when you exercise, you need to have more water. Don’t think that drinking coffee or cola instead of water will do, since the caffeine in these will only serve to dehydrate you further and make you less productive in the long run. In fact, for every cup of coffee, you need to drink an extra glass of water.
Once you have instituted these guidelines, you will see an increase in your productivity. Now you will not only be busy but you will also be productive.]]>