I’m not going to suggest you work more hours, so keep reading! There are ways to boost productivity without clocking in extra time. We are all different, so check out the following tips and test them to see what works best for you.
5 Ways to Be More Productive at Work without Working Overtime
1. Don’t Multi-Task
Are you a master multi-tasker? It might not be a good thing. Jumping from one thing to the next may be necessary at times, but it’s not good for productivity. When our brains keep changing focus, it can slow down and unfortunately is more prone to error. So, not only are you working slower, you then spend more time fixing mistakes.
Try instead to monotask. Focus on one thing at a time. If it helps, establish blocks of time and mark them on your calendar. Assign the time to certain projects and avoid interruptions or distractions to maximize your productivity. This works well for high-level projects that may require a lot of focus and attention. Save smaller and less intensive tasks for times when interruptions are inevitable.
2. Take Breaks
In between those scheduled blocks of working time, take a break. Get up from your desk/couch/cubicle and take a walk. This provides you with an opportunity to step away from your work for a moment and take a breather. If you can’t leave work behind, use the time as a brainstorm session for an upcoming marketing campaign or think about potential pros and cons of a new product concept. Either way, take the time to get up and move.
Taking multiple, short walking breaks also has the potential to better your mood, help you stay alert and combat the negative health issues associated with sitting for extended periods of time.
3. Organize and Prioritize
Take control of your work and increase your productivity by staying organized. Create and implement a clear organizational system. Whether that be an inbox/outbox, urgent, non-urgent, etc. Staying organized will help you know what projects are on your plate and can help you prioritize those items to be the most effective.
Staying organized can also help you focus according to one study, as having too many things in your field of vision can be distracting for your brain.
Not sure how to get started? Check out these tips from HGTV.
4. Create a Workspace Conducive to Productivity
Along with organization, try to create a working space that’s conducive to work. Does your desk look like a disaster zone? Stage a major overhaul to clear things out. Get rid of everything that doesn’t serve a purpose and file the rest away for reference. Place a few tasteful décor times in your workspace and don’t be afraid to add a plant or two (not only do they add a bit of pretty to your space, they can also reduce your stress levels).
Also, pay close attention to lighting (natural light is best) in your space. Daylight has been shown to help workers be more well-rested, which translates to more energy to get things done during working hours. In addition to lighting, try to choose lighter furniture pieces to keep your space from becoming too dark.
5. Find What Works for You & Take it One Step at a Time
If you find yourself overwhelmed and struggling to check all the to-do’s off your list, give just one of the above ideas a try. You might be surprised to know that a few adjustments can make all the difference in your workday productivity, giving you the extra time you need to accomplish all your tasks.
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- 5 Ways to Be More Productive at Work without Working Overtime - March 14, 2018