There are many habits that affect your daily work and ruin your productivity. Identifying them could be the key to start changing or, at least, improving some attitudes that stop you from reaching your goals.
‘More’ doesn’t always mean ‘better’. Trying to do too many things at a time is one of the biggest enemies of your productivity. Every time you interrupt a task, you need several minutes to regain focus. This makes you waste time and finish it later than you expected –if you ever get to do it-. Focus on just one task and don’t start the next one until you have finished it.
- Over-cluttered to-do lists
When writing your to-do list, you tend to include everything, even those tasks which are not a high priority. But when you’re not able to finish them, all you get is frustration and the feeling that you’re not being productive. Prioritise what’s most important and only include those tasks on your list.
- Working without routines
If you don’t have a working routine, you will waste too much time on worthless tasks. To start working every day, you need to establish a set of practices to kick your productivity into high gear and focus on the tasks that will bring you actual results.
- Not delegating
If you want to do everything by yourself, you’ll have the feeling that a single day doesn’t have enough hours to face your backlog of tasks. Surround yourself with skilled professionals and partners you can trust, delegate some work to them and focus on what you’re really good at.
- Not being able to say ‘no’
Sometimes it’s hard to refuse to do something, but if you don’t do so, you’ll see how your agenda gets filled up with tasks that keep you away from your goals. Don’t let others decide for you, and say ‘no’ to everything which is not important.
- Not taking breaks
We tend to think that the more time we devote to a task, the sooner we’ll finish. But it is just impossible to stay focused on the same thing for too long. Break big tasks into smaller pieces and plan breaks in between.
- Checking your email constantly
Instead of focusing on your unfinished tasks, you spend the whole day checking your inbox and sending messages that most times could wait. Save some time every day to check your inbox and devote the rest of it to the tasks that we’ll help you reach your goals.
- Being overconnected
Being too available raises your chances of being interrupted and distracted, which directly affects your productivity. Turn off notifications on your laptop and mobile phone while you’re focused on one task and you’ll see the difference in the results.
- Not measuring your results
You spend the whole day working, but do you know what the actual results of your efforts are? Use tools to help you know yourself better and find those areas in which you’re less efficient and need to improve.
If you identify yourself with any of these habits that ruin your productivity, it’s about time to start changing. Take the initiative and start being a more productive person.
Translation by Susana Castro
Image: Oli Dale