Let’s talk productivity tips for goal success.

Can you believe we are half way through the year already? Insane! I truly feel the older I get the faster time speeds up. It is why I try live each day on Purpose. If I don’t then I feel my day will spiral out of control and be wasted. Now don’t get me wrong I have those days every now and then. Take yesterday for instance, we slept in late and spent the day watching movies and chilling. We did absolutely nothing, nudder, zippo! It was awesome, exactly what we needed to do. Billie has always said Time wasted having fun is not time wasted. We had fun yesterday just being together and chilling. Everyone needs to take that time to themselves.

It is when you do it too often that it really becomes a negative. So it is half way through the year, and the perfect time to evaluate your goals, and where you are on achieving these goals. As you look back over the first half of the year, how productive has it been? Do you feel like you didn’t have control of your days, your time? When you look back over the past month did you actually achieve the goals that you set? Looking at today, how much are you going to get done? Thinking back over it all may get you excited with how much you have achieved or it may make you not so excited depending on how productive you feel you were. Productivity lends itself to getting more done and moving closer to achieving your goals.

It doesn’t matter how far down the track achieving your goals seem right now, when you live your life on purpose and be productive in life, the path of your goals and dreams becomes more clear and more attainable. I recently watched a video clip about he psychology of productivity and the steps you can take to living a more productive life. It was really interesting, so I thought I would share what I learnt with you.

First off, what is productivity? Productivity is used in economics, business and everyday life but it generally has the same definition. “Productivity is the state of being productive, a productive person, a productive business, or an economy, yields maximum results or output or the most impact the more results you generate and the less resources or time it takes to do so the more efficient you are“.

So how do you become more productive? Well the first step is simply asking yourself what output do you want to produce more of? Do you want to see the results in form of revenue or profits, more investments, more clients or you want to produce greater content, etc? Just ask yourself this question before creating any of your goals.

There were some interesting facts that were delivered in the video too. Did you know only 2% of people have brains wired to effectively multitask, and for the rest of the population multitasking can actually decrease their productivity by up to 40%. Also, not many people are really keen on a rainy day (not too many rainy days, at least) until they need to start being productive and in general a sunny, fine day can decrease productivity throughout an office or your work life. Of course we all want to be outside amongst the warmth and beauty of the day. Another fact is that if you want to be more productive tomorrow, you need to go to bed earlier a Harvard Medical School study revealed that adults who got between seven and a half and nine hours of sleep were 20 percent more productive than those who slept less. In a study that was conducted over nine months revealed that employees that work from home were more productive than their peers who actually worked in an office. Right, these are interesting facts but, and you may be wondering, what is the importance of productivity?

Well, I believe, our long-term goals can only be achieved if we work every day towards those with these goals in mind. We may not have an action step every day, but always keep it in mind. Every big goal is made up of small daily, or weekly goals. People who want to lose 20kgs can’t do so by being super productive one day, or one week and not keep at it the next. For instance, people who want to build a house can do so unless they add each brick, in order, in a certain way. It doesn’t not work if you build one wall and try to put the roof on. Every brick, every little action step, milestone counts and that is where productivity comes in. When you commit to a more productive life, you commit to achieving and completing all the action steps that lead you to successfully achieving your goals and End Games.

To gain a consistent commitment to productivity you will find it is built on habits that you can fall back on if, or when, roadblocks, or obstacles, threaten your progress. Learning how to be more productive is an investment in itself, yourself, your future, and your goals.

Some simple ways to increase your productivity. The secrets to being more productive or not new, they really are not secrets at all, we’ve heard them before and sometimes we just need a little reminder. All it takes is simply a little action to move you towards becoming more productive and getting more done in less time. The first way they spoke about in the video was called “the two minute rule”. What is the best way to finish the tasks on your to-do list? Well it’s to simply get started, David Allen is a top productivity consultant and an author of Getting Things Done, and he describes the 2-minute rule as a quick way to being more productive and quite simply get more things done. The two-minute rule consists of two major parts. The first one is, if the next item on your to-do list will take less than 10 minutes to complete just go ahead and do it. The thought process is – it’s only going take two minutes, after procrastinating for an entire hour to complete a task that only takes two minutes. It becomes a complete waste of time, but we all know that we’ve done that before. The next part is – that if the next task on your to-do list will take longer than two minutes, don’t use this as an excuse to put off the task. Find a way to start the task that will take less than two minutes. For example, if you’re putting off going to the gym, try putting your clothes out the night before it takes less than two minutes, to get the stuff ready as opposed to waking up and finding it all in the morning. Or if you’re putting off cleaning the kitchen maybe just do two dishes, or three dishes, the easiest way to finish a task is to just get started on it, even if you’re just starting the smallest of action steps for that task.

Another tip is to just take a deep breath when time passes faster than you expected and the tasks on your to-do list start to really pile up. I know it can be easy to get stressed out. Just don’t go ripping your hair out over a lack of productivity, it will only make the problem worse. Trust me! When people are stressed they weaken their ability to focus and be more productive, so you need to get rid of stress. I find when I start to feel stressed, that if I take a step back, and take a really deep breath (sometimes I even go for a walk) it really helps me to clear the head and see clearer. When you take a slow inhale and exhale it can send a message to your brain that you’re safe and ok, and that message is transported throughout the entire body and the stress will start to dissipate.

Another important productivity tip – is to increase your focus and eliminate distractions, which is the biggest enemy of productivity. We have an entire world of entertainment (cough cough Netflix) and information at our fingertips but when you allow yourself to be distracted by it all you can lose crucial time better spent on your to-do list. Did you know there are apps and actual software out there designed to block certain websites or social media apps for a specific period of time when you actually need to get your work done? This is needed even more so if you work from home like we do. You can try downloading apps like these or keep yourself focused the old-fashioned way – just disconnect (wow, who’d have thought!). If your studying, or learning something new, or just trying to take in valuable information, it’s important to know that when you’re learning you absolutely need to switch off distractions to effectively remember, and take in, what you’re learning.

Lastly, to help you become more productive is to test and measure. That’s right test and measure what works for you. Like in everything we are all different and not all things will work the same way for all of us. Find what is right for you. Get curious try different things, testing is a main form of action driven by curiosity. You will find all wealthy and very successful people are curious, because the curiosity drives them to test everything. If something doesn’t work then they go ahead and change it, and if it does work then they keep it.

Ultimately, to be more productive you need to just start. Stop procrastinating and just get started. One step at a time. Boom, done!

Mark Robinson

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