Being productive is perhaps associated with being the class swot. But, if you are looking to succeed in any business, whether you are building your own or working for someone else and hoping to get noticed, learning how to be productive is key.
For some people productivity is in their nature and they make it look effortless, whilst for others they struggle. I am lucky enough to be a productive person, but if you are not, here are some common things we all do to achieve our action packed days.
1. Organisation is Key
From to do lists to mental planning, you need to have a clear outline in your head of what needs doing. I personally love the app Todoist. This enables me to keep lists of what needs doing and when. I have it installed on my phone, my tablet and my deskop, and it works with my Alexa units.
Once you know what needs doing you can start to achieve it, so back up your organisation with a failsafe filing system. In my world everything is virtual, so using secure cloud storage organised into folders, I can locate any pieces of work easily. There is nothing more distracting than not being able to find what you are looking for, and the time wasted cannot be got back.
2. Discipline and Focus
Ok, it is kind of a two in one, but I have to have discipline. My to do list has been organised into daily tasks, and they have to be completed. It really is that simple, because another lot of work will appear tomorrow, so if I start to get behind it is a quick spiral to chaos and panic. I know the time I stop for lunch and until then I am at work. Working at home is lethal if you do not have focus. I am enthused by watching my to do list get smaller – sad though that might be! So, I have learned how to have focus and maintain discipline.
3. Bounce Well
Ok, so even the best laid plans can go wrong. Not everything always goes to plan. The school might ring and demand I collect a poorly child, an unexpected job might pop up. Anything is possible but I have learned to bounce. If things do not go according to plan you must have a coping mechanism. How can you recover the situation and catch up or get back on track. The key here is to make fast decisions about how to reprioritise and go with it. There is no point dwelling on whether you do one thing or another. Pick a job and run with it. I have a lightening brain, it may not always be right but it can react and act quickly.
4. Keep Learning
I love learning. I used to think I was good at certain tasks until I went on a CPD course. Now I have a whole new skill set that has improved my abilities and given me the ability to improve my productivity. It basically boils down to motivation and drive. I want to be the best at what I do, so I will find the time to brush up my skills.
Productivity is something you can learn, but you do have to have a goal that makes it all worthwhile. I won’t bore you with my life plan but suffice to say it is my driving force and motivates me to get the million and one things done I do each day. If you are struggling with the motivation to be productive I would advise you to reconsider your position and goals. Having the right goals, with the overriding desire to achieve them will naturally lead to productivity.