A new year has arrived and with it can lead new pressures and challenges, particularly when it comes to productivity! Check out my 10 awesome productivity tips to help you throughout this year!
10 Awesome Productivity Tips For New Year
1. Set yourself a goal or two for the year – it is important to set yourself goals at the beginning of the year to drive your focus into the right direction. If it is a rather large goal you may find it makes sense to break it down into smaller goals to help you stay driven. When I give myself a large goal to achieve, I create smaller and manageable tracking goals and deadlines which help me to ensure I stay on the right track and it also keeps your goals measurable. If your goal is not measurable it will result in you falling off your path easier and you may not see the changes you are making in the run up to achieving your main goal. It is important to be realistic, remember you are human so don’t set yourself a goal that is unobtainable as it will leave you feeling deflated rather than elated when you reach the end of the goal’s deadline.
2. Health and sleep monitoring – why is this productive you ask? Having a high level of health and a good rate of fitness combined with a good night’s sleep will enable you to work at your fullest potential. You can easily pick up devices to suit all budgets; my personal favourite is the Fitbit. The Fitbit works in unison with your smart phone to track your steps throughout the day, it also gives you a gentle buzz when you haven’t completed 250 steps in an hour. This is an incredible addition if you work mainly from computers as it ensures you time in a break from the screen to achieve the 250 steps before the hour is up. The Fitbit also helps with sleep monitoring you can set alarms designed to give you the most effective sleep with its integrated alarm clock. Furthermore, it also helps you to stay physically fit which can help reduce stress levels and increase fitness, which again has a positive effect on a person’s productivity. If you aren’t keen on a watch why not try the brilliant free app called MyFitnessPal which also helps monitor activity and diet.
3. Turn your home or work place in to a Smart zone – you don’t have to be a technical genius to do this as a variety of places offer cheap and easy to use alternatives to built-in appliances. One of the most recent additions to this sector is Amazon Echo and Echo Dot at an impressive starting price of just £49.99 this great piece of technology enables users to voice control their homes, have their own virtual assistant and can also be spoken to from other rooms in your home or workplace!
4. Beware of your productivity killers – these are things that hamper you from doing what you should be. My personal productivity killers are social media, internet shopping and the telly (especially The Walking Dead ATM!) A new addition to the gadget world is being crowdfunded for production which is nameed Distractagone. It works on the principle of a timed safe box in which you place all gadgets in and select a time, when the allotted time is up it will release your gadgets! Using a similar method in the meantime is an amazing way to ensure you refrain from procrastinating!
5. Keep your work diary and home diary separate – this may sound like a ridiculous suggestion but it does help. Being able to run two diaries simultaneously allows you to prioritise the important things and then work on the more menial tasks and appointments at a later date.
6. Get smart phone savvy – most of us own a smart phone but not all of us are using them to their full potential. Check out my favourite productivity apps for this year:
Due – this app helps to create reminders for everyday tasks and business/work tasks.
Bloom – is a centering app it helps you to remember to also be you, whether it’s sending a loved one a card or having a break it helps to keep you grounded.
Day one – this acts as a journal where you can jot notes or write paragraphs on your progress, daily life and also any positive and negative thoughts to help you overcome them by revisiting at a later date.
1 Password – this handy app not only creates secure passwords for your accounts it also secures them into one place and remembers them for you! Not only is it more secure than a draw full of scrap paper but it also helps save time.
Asana – this is a well-developed app which enables users to share documents with attachments, order and re order day to day tasks and can be used by up to 15 people. This app is ideal for teams and small work places as it also can be used to delegate tasks between the work-force. You could take it further and use it in the home to dish out the household chores too!
Rescue time – this is similar to the timed safe idea for gadgets however it is built in to this app! The app monitors your usage of each of your ordinary apps which can help shock you into submission, when you realise how much time you spend reading the news or browsing social media each day. Its main function is to allow you to take control over your daily usage by temporarily locking certain apps on your phone to prevent you from using them when you should be doing something more meaningful.
7. Schedule me time – it is important to have a break, in fact it is crucial to aid you in your long time goal achievement. Burning yourself out too early can cause you to feel easily defeated and you will be more likely to lose your determination to achieve the goals you set. Whether it’s half an hour to read a book or an evening to go for a meal, make that time about relaxing.
8. Create to do lists and prepare the night before – lists aren’t to everyone’s tastes however I find creating a list of tasks for the day after helps me to ease into a better night’s sleep as I have rid my mind of things that need doing. I also categorise my to do list in A B and C. A = most important tasks which need doing ASAP, B = still important but requires less urgency C = tasks I would like to get done but they take less priority. You could also use colour coding if this suits you best.
9. Give yourself a daily time to check your emails – if you’re like me as soon as your phone pings you are on it faster than it can load! Dedicate an hour or half an hour a day to go through your emails and do your replies. Most people wait 24 hours for a reply so make sure you use that time wisely.
10. Go to sleep earlier at night and make sure you rise earlier – we were all guilty of it over the festive period; those late nights and even later mornings/afternoon waking! Looking back at mine I can see how sluggish they would make me that day in comparison to when I wake early during the normal working week. Benjamin Franklin had an well-expressed quote on this matter:
“Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise.”