Isn’t it surprising how we all have 24 hours in a day but it seems others get more done than us? You might be tempted to think these individuals have more hours in the day than the rest of us. But that is far from the truth. Countless researches have shown that those who are successful and get a lot more work done are insanely productive.
The way you utilize your hours during the day has a direct impact on how much work you get done. To be insanely productive, you will have to ditch old defeating habits and adopt new ones that will increase your effectiveness and get more accomplished for the day.
Below are 7 ways to be insanely productive and get all your work done:
Exercise Your Way To Greater Productivity
According to James Levine, M.D, PhD of the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn, the human body has over millions of years evolved to be in constant physical activity such as walking and standing upright.
Unfortunately, the advent of technology and long hours spent at work has rendered us inactive- our butts forever pinned to our chairs. This action has a damaging effect on our well-being.
Various studies have shown a strong link between wellbeing and productivity, that is, an improved wellbeing helps you to become more productive at your work.
One of the ways to improve your well-being is to exercise- an activity that reduces your risk of developing cardiovascular disease, obesity, diabetes and other lifestyle diseases that may impact your work productivity. For those whose work is physically demanding, an improved cardiovascular health – as a result of regular exercise- can give you the proper stamina to match the demand.
John Medina, Author of Brain Rule stated that people who are physically active have better score on cognitive test compared to others who are mostly desk-bound and hardly engage in physical activity.
Thus, if your work requires you to be sharp mentally and focus to perform well on your job, exercising regularly can give the brain the necessary boost to accomplish that by increasing the blood flow to the brain. This helps sharpen your alertness, focus and increase your overall energy level.
Eating Right To Increase Your Productive Time
There is a popular saying that goes: “You are what you eat”. The kind of food you eat has a direct impact on how productive you can be at your work.
Being insanely productive requires that your brain has the right level of energy needed to keep you focus on the task at hand. Your diet affects this energy. Although your brain makes up just 2-3% of your body mass, it burns 20% of the calories you take in.
In fact, the neurons (your brain cells) use up twice as much energy than other cells in your body.
It then becomes clear that the food you consume also has a direct impact on your cognitive performance. To help boost your effectiveness at your work, your body needs glucose, which it converts to energy your brain needs to stay alert and get things done.
A low level of glucose can derail your effort in trying to pay attention and be more creative and productive at you job.
It is therefore imperative on us to make the right decision as to what kinds of food we need to give us the right dose of glucose our body needs.
The British Journal of Health Psychology conducted a research to ascertain which food affects our daily living: participant who consumed larger quantities of fruit and vegetable were found to be happier, more engaged and creative than participants who did not engage in this diet.
The reason for this remarkable results is that, essential nutrient which stimulate dopamine secretion were more present in fruits and vegetable. Also, fruits and vegetables were also found to minimize body inflammation and improve memory due to the antioxidants present in them.
Having a lasting mental energy is vital for your productivity; hence you should take every step necessary to improve your diet.
Having A Reminder Impact Positively On How Much You Get Done
How you organize your time has an impact on how much you could accomplish in a day. To help your productivity soar-off the roof, you will have to take your calendars and to-do-list seriously.
Thanks to technology, there are hundreds of apps that can make this process much easier. But before you get into using those apps, I would like you to reflect on the following:
Before you begin using a to-do-list, think about your greatest aspirations-what you want to do with your life. Consider various ways you intend to achieve these goals. Put them into small steps and allocate time for each step. Also consider using an alarm to trigger each step as a way of reminding you on what you should be doing next.
Finally, reminders work best if you make your goals clear enough and on things you find important. These create motivation to want to get the task completed.
Planning Early Can Make You Insanely Productive
To make our projects more successful when we execute them, we have to spend more time and expend enough effort into planning before we begin to take action.
One of the best times to plan our task is the night before the day of execution. This is important as it adequately prepare your mind to perform task.
If you plan the night before going to bed, new insight on how to execute your work begin to form in your subconscious mind whiles you sleep. You wake up with a better understanding on how to get the job done quickly and effectively.
It is never advisable to switch between planning and execution. Studies has found that, switching causes you to lose up to 40% in productivity as well as take you much more time to complete your project. This affects your focus on your project, making you more prone to make avoidable errors.
Drink Enough Water To Enable You Increase Your Focus
We’ve all been told to take enough water (8 glasses of water) as it is good for our body. But how does water affect our productivity?
In a recent study conducted by University of East London to find out how water affected productivity, 34 people were tested after they were split into two groups- one group ate a plain breakfast while the other drank water after breakfast. It was shown that those who drank water had increase in performance by 14% as the brain is able to better focus after you have had enough water.
One thing we never release is that our bodies are designed to keep us alive (self-preservation) and once water is low, your body’s focus shift on replacing the lost water. In the process your ability to pay attention to the task at hand is hampered. In addition, you begin to experience weakness and headache; this is a way your body is telling you it is losing water.
Reduce Or Totally Eliminate Distraction
Being interrupted is something we all experience on our day-to-day activities. But if we can take the courage to turn off our notifications- email, Whatsapp, Facebook alerts- we can be able to get more down within the day.
Distraction can be very costly, and Dr Gloria Mark, Professor of Informatics at the University of California, Irvine, says that when you are distracted while at a task, it will take an average of 23minutes and 15seconds to fully regain your focus on a task.
Another studies showed that, distraction significantly increases your stress which lead to a higher feeling of frustration because you seem not to be able to keep up, focus and complete a task in time.
Distraction has a great impact on your creativity in deep thinking on subjects you want to analyse. For your information: Innovation and creativity demands a high level of concentration.
So how do we prevent or reduce distraction?
Schedule specific times in the day to respond to emails: You don’t have to check every single notification from your social media account, turn them off. And use your lunch breaks to catch-up on what is happening.
Get “Don’t disturb” sign on your door in your office: Allow yourself to be distracted if the issue is both urgent and important to attend to. You can use special software that only alerts you when an important contact is trying to get in touch with you.
Finally, before you start work, set clear priorities (things you need to get done) and make sure you get all available tools and materials needed to get to work. This will prevent you from getting up and leaving your desk in search of a pen or little things that you should have around your desk.
Stop Complaining And Focus On Getting More Done
We all complain from the trivial issues of life to the things that do really matter to us. Complaining doesn’t make things better; it actually prevents you from taking actions and only sees the wrongs in situations.
Complaining stems from negative thoughts which lessen our creativity and productivity. If you make it a habit, you can hamper your ability to stay focus and be able to work through challenging project with all the calmness and patience you need. Studies show that being a chronic complainer negatively affect formation of memory association which is crucial in your daily task or project.
People who constantly complain see the world differently because their focus is on the negative: seeing things in their lives worse than they really are. Such people have little hope left as they never belief things can get better.
In addition, as you see hopelessness around you, you become less innovative or creative in finding solution to solve your pressing needs and challenges.
As the saying goes “complaining is verbal procrastination. It doesn’t get the job done”. When you complain, you only fuel the problem; all that you do is talk and talk about the situation. In the end, nothing really gets done.
To solve this problem so we become more productive, we need to note that “action is always more powerful than verbal intent. Doing get it done”.
If you are a habitual complainer, anytime you find yourself in a situation where you feel like complaining, pause and see what others have to say about the issue. You will realise that most times, it is not as bad as you might have perceived the situation. Always spend time to think of a solution on how things should be done and begin to do. That is how you become insanely productive.