Lets face it, we live in a busy busy world! We are bombarded daily with pulls from media, social media, work, family, and all kinds of other things that compete for our attention. Our world of distraction makes it difficult to get anything done these days. As a busy working mom, some days I feel like I have it all together and other days I feel like a bomb went off in my house and i’m not sure what to tackle next. The good news is we are blessed with 168 hours each week to put to the best use possible. Here are some of my tips on how to be as productive as you can with those hours!
1) Get everything out of your head. Don’t trust your brain and don’t remember anything – write everything down on a sticky note or notepad. Even when I am playing with my daughter, if something pops in my head, I immediately write it down so I can focus my attention on her and not have it nagging at the back of my brain. Once a day or week (whatever duration makes sense for you) review all notes and put them into to-do categories and prioritize. This tip is from David Allen’s awesome book, Getting Things Done.
2) Each evening, create the top three critical tasks that you need to complete the next day before 11am. Completing these tasks early in the day will give you the productivity boost you need to finish out the day strong.
3) Determine ahead of time how your 168 hours a week will be spent. If you don’t plan your time, others will plan it for you. This means chuncking out times each day to do the things that are most important in propelling you toward your goals. I created an Excel sheet that breaks each day into times and put my tasks there. I have it printed out where I can see it daily.
4) Don’t multitask! Easier said than done, however, focusing on one task at a time allows you to get it done faster and quicker. Interruptions in a task can derail our productivity greatly. It takes an average of 18 minutes to get back on task after an interruption. Make sure you aren’t interrupting yourself!
5) Get enough rest. I’ve heard this time and again from others….if you don’t get the sleep you need, there is no way you can be your optimal, productive self. This is so true for me. Not enough sleep results in a brain fog, which isn’t much fun at all!
“The biggest difference between successful people and unsuccessful people is that successful people are willing to do what unsuccessful people are not.”
– Darren Hardy, Success Magazine
Wishing you the best with your productivity, life, and career! I’d love to hear any other productivity tips that work for you.