Productive people get more done, they deliver higher quality work and they have more energy. How do they do it consistently? With daily habits and disciplines that they do every single day to make the most of their time. Here are 8 things insanely productive people do that you can do too.
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1. They plan their day in advance.
Planning ahead keeps you organised, and makes sure that you're on top of everything that needs to be done. If you don't have any structure to your work, you'll like miss important tasks, forget things, do things that don't matter and get easily distracted by whatever comes your way. Don't let this happen! For more, check out How to Create the Ultimate To Do List.
2. The get the important tasks done.
Being busy doesn't mean you're productive. What matters the most is getting the important things done. I talk about the 80/20 rule a lot, and how 20% of your tasks make up for 80% of your results. So if you have 10 things on your to do list, 2 of those are particularly important, so focus on those. For more on this, check out the video How to Triple Your Productivity With the 80/20 Rule.
3. They focus on one thing at a time.
If you really want to get something done, do one thing at a time and don't stop until you're finished. Not only will this make sure that you'll do it, you'll do it well. Multi tasking is a myth - it is not productive. It's actually switch tasking. If you're writing an email and then the phone rings, you're not doing two things at once. You've stopped the email, spoken to someone, hung up, forgotten where you're at, may have forgotten the email completely to do a new task, and then hours later that email is still there unsent.
You're not killing two birds with one stone, you're getting distracted and doing two tasks poorly. So not only does the task likely not get done, it doesn't get done well. If you really want to be productive, do one at a time. For more, check out David Crenshaw's talk The Myth of Multitasking
4. They remove distractions.
Following on from the last point, it's important to remove distractions. Get off social media, turn off your notifications, even put your phone Do Not Disturb if you're doing something important. You should also remove any potential distractions from your desk, and work in a place where you're not frequently interrupted. If you work in a co-working space, it can be a good idea to put headphones in so people know not to bother you. Wherever you are, get rid of distractions and interruptions and you'll be able to get much more work done!
5. They avoid unnecessary meetings.
I could almost put avoid all meetings because they are just such a time suck, especially if you have to commute somewhere. Meetings drag on for far too long, they're often full of pointless chit chat and the majority of them can almost always be summarised into an email or a phone call. If you do need to have a meeting, have a clear agenda with what is going to be discussed so that it can be finished quickly.
6. They delegate their work.
You don't have to do everything yourself. Your time is valuable and should be spent on what you do best, so when it comes to smaller tasks you should palm these off to other people, even if it costs money. Your time is worth much more than the price of picking up dry cleaning or filling out a spreadsheet. Depending on your workload it may even be worth getting a part time virtual assistant. Check out UpWork to find one.
7. They exercise.
Exercise is a critical part of your overall wellbeing. It's obviously great for your health, it gives you energy, it improves your mood, it helps you sleep better and realistically it's not that hard to do! Even if its a short jog, a home workout, a game of basketball, exercise should be a part of your daily routine (or at least 3 times a week). If you struggle to find time or you just find exercising in general difficult, check out the app Seven which has seven minute workouts that require no equipment and you can do from home any time. It's great!
8. They have a morning routine.
The most productive people have a routine every morning that prepares them for the day and you should too. Whether it's a workout, coffee, hot shower, meditation, anything that sets your mind and body for the day. These routines turn into habits and keep you productive, healthy and full of energy. Check out the book The Miracle Morning by Hal Elrod to create yours!
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Try to incorporate as many of these habits into your life until they become your own! You'll be productive, happy and energetic, allowing you to get much more work done. Enjoy!