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10 Ways To Supercharge Your Productivity This Year
Posted by Nicky Coffin
Last week I was chatting with a few good friends about our typical working days and the hours we all work. As a business owner, they expected me to share all the details of my 100-hour weeks and stressed life.
Because over the last few years, I have focussed relentlessly on ‘being’ productive, while scaling the business and working fewer hours.
I had to.
With a growing business and family, things had to change. So today I am revealing a few suggestions for you.
I have mentioned a few of these in the past. However, this continues to be such a popular topic on group and personal coaching calls, I decided to write this additional post.
Here we go…. Some might appear quite logical others less so, and in no order here you go…..
1. Stop Multitasking
Running around like the proverbial headless chicken doesn’t work. It might stroke your ego though it won’t improve your results. There are thousands of articles online that reveal why multitasking isn’t good for our productivity or our health.
Contrary to popular belief, multitasking doesn’t save time. In fact, it will probably take you longer to finish two or three projects when you’re jumping back and forth than it would to finish each one separately.
Have a look at this excellent post from Health.com which takes a deep dive into the subject. Though multitasking doesn’t work, this next strategy does.
2. Batch Your work
I discovered the power of batching a few years ago. Fundamentally you allocate days or chunks of days for certain tasks.
I have days for coaching calls, planning events, study, marketing approval and admin. This way, I get in a groove. Which leads me onto something else.
3. Let Your Diary Manage Your Life
If it’s in the diary, it happens; if not, it won’t. Each week I look at what is ahead of me and plan my time and energy accordingly. I also block off personal time first; shock horror!
Our holidays go in first, weekends away, school events, swimming lessons, my personal learning time, recovery time post our RockIT events; then work.
Planning will always improve performance….
4. Work to A 90 Day Plan
Many people struggle to be productive because they don’t know what they need to achieve in a given time frame. That is why a yearly plan broken into quarters is crucial. So simple and incredibly effective.
5. Put You First
I probably could have kicked off with this one, and before I go any further, it’s key to remember you are pivotal to your results, so focus on you first.
Outstanding results can only happen when you are in the right ‘state’. As you know, I am a student of advanced thinking and NLP. One of the first things you are taught to improve your results is to develop the ability to manage your state.
If you are working on low energy reserves, your results will reflect this. Gandhi uttered a favourite quote of mine:
“I meditate for one hour a day. When I am incredibly busy, I then meditate 2 hours a day”- Mahatma Gandhi
For you this might be spending more time with your family, going on holiday, indulging in a spa day, whatever it is that brings a smile to your face or an excited feeling in your stomach; do more of it.
This will work wonders on your productivity.
This leads me onto something I’m really getting massive benefits from now.
Even the British Medical Association recommend the power of meditation. It’s something I have come back to as I have got busier and my life more complex with two children under five!
It’s all too easy to get carried away with everything going on in our lives, including running all our old, less than helpful patterns.
A guaranteed way to stop this is to meditate. When we meditate, we are switching off our constant thoughts and giving our minds a break. Meditation has been proven to control anxiety and stress, improve emotional health, self-awareness, improve sleep and concentration, and the list goes on.
7. Switch Your Phone Off
You are the leader of the team. You don’t consistently need to have your phone on or be checking it every 5 seconds. It’s incredibly distracting. Switch it off.
8. Only Open The Browsers You Need
I know this seems strange, but the more browsers you have open, the more possibility there is to be distracted. Switch them off and focus on what you are doing only.
9. Take Regular Breaks
Our bodies and mind need a break. Generally, today we spend a lot of time staring at a screen which isn’t exactly good for us. So, take breaks away. If you haven’t read Tony Schwartz’s book The Power of Full Engagement, I highly recommend it.
￼Another alternative methodology is the Pomodoro Technique, which has a slightly different way of working with time and yet it’s still an effective, approach. The Pomodoro process breaks tasks down into 25-minute blocks. You can read more from the inventor here.
10. Outsource What Isn’t Your Zone of Genius
Both Katy and I, back in the day, have sat down and carried out many tasks that someone else could have been doing, from; cleaning the toilets, reconciling bank statements, writing marketing campaigns, formatting CVs, attempting to manage the website, buying milk; and the list goes on.
Today we, and you, are blessed in having access to a multiskilled workforce across the globe. Our team at Centredexcellence is completely virtual. Katy and I focus on our core skills only and our clients thank us for it.
The truth is that you need to take action. Deep down most of us know what our personal productivity hacks are and the 10 I have shared here we always recommend to all our clients… so go go go!
Nicky and Katy