If you are anything like me, then you are distracted by just about anything. It could be listening to your co-worker’s conversations, trying to think of a word for your “barn-burner” of a words with friends game, or the ultimate “TIME-SUCK”… Facebook. The modern day workplace is a pretty distracting place.
The key to being productive is to have the best version of yourself be in charge of the “not your best” self. What do I mean by that? Have you ever had a day where you seem to be “on fire”, a day where you just can’t be stopped. You go to the grocery store, do 4 loads of laundry, get the taxes done, finish all of your side projects and still leave room to call your grandma, all before noon! Compare that day with the day that you roll out of bed at noon, open the refrigerator door, take a couple chugs of 2 days past milk just to go take a nap until the rerun of your favorite show is on at 6:30 (it’s okay, we’ve all been there).
Here you are going to find some tips that will help you stay closer to that first version, at least while you are at work.
Download a Google Extension That Tracks Your Productivity
I previously had my home screen set to a site called “productify” which was great because every time I logged on to the internet, or opened a new tab, it showed me exactly how productive I’d been. It might say 79% or even 0 % if I spent the entire day in bed watching Netflix. It really helped me to be aware of how productive I was being. I now use a tool called RescueTime. This is a great tool because not only does it work offline, like when I’m typing in Microsoft office, bit I can go into the program and classify specific sites as productive or not. This is a very helpful tool because for some professions, like blog writers, it is productive to be on a blogging site, but for sales professionals, it seems like that would be a waste of time.
Log Out of Facebook
Sometimes I’ll find myself typing “facebook” into the url bar for no reason at all while I’m at work. It’s not to see how our latest ad campaign is performing, or check out how much engagement we got on our most recent post, I am not even curious what my friends are up to at that particular moment. For a while I was just in a bad habit of checking Facebook. I would probably spend no more than 45 seconds on it before snapping out of the daze and realizing that I am a human, not a zombie. I didn’t want to completely cancel my account because I use it for work. I had to come up with a solution. I noticed that every time I went to Facebook, I was automatically logged in. I tried logging off. Now every time I go to facebook.com, instead of having all of this mind numbing content, I see the login page and remember that I have work to do! The day after I did this, my productivity went up a whopping 10%. It becomes a fun game that you play with yourself to see “how productive can can I be?”
Make Lists, Cross Things Off of That List
This is a great way to see how productive you have actually been over the course of the day. It also feels really amazing to cross things off of that list. The pride that you feel from crossing that off the list is encouragement to take on the next task on with full steam. The things that you put on this list don’t need to be earth shattering, the first thing on the list can be something simple: “Send out email to client”, “Change light bulb”. Both of these are simple tasks, but at the end of the day when you look at all of the simple tasks that you have accomplished, you understand that you had a rather productive day.
Friday’s Are Not for Lollygagging
Traditionally in the American workplace it is safe to say that as the last day of the workweek drags on, workers seem to get less and less productive. Some people leave early, some people decide that Fridays are a great day for golf, and lunches seem to be quite a bit longer. Imagine if you made it your goal to make Fridays your most productive day. You could outwork some of your co-workers by 20%!