If you are like most people, you start the day motivated to get everything done and by the end of it, you are exhausted or disappointed that you just couldn’t figure out how to get it all done.
On days where I feel accomplished, it’s usually because I somehow, almost magically, was able to do much more than I thought I could in a one days’ time period.
If you find yourself spinning your wheels most days and never know how other people seem to get things done, here is some advice and tips for getting more done every day.
Tips for Getting More Done Every Day
Make sure you are getting enough rest
If you are not getting enough sleep each night, your productivity will slow down and you won’t be able to effectively do the things you need to do. While getting up earlier in the day can help you get a jump-start on your to-do list, it needs to be scheduled so you can get to bed early enough to get your full night’s rest in as well. I admit, this is not something that I have down pat for myself, so I’m talking to myself here as much as I am to you, as a reminder. 🙂
Many smart phones offer apps that help you make lists for things you need to do. Set yourself reminders if you need them, to make sure you don’t forget important things coming up in the future.
Likewise, they are also programs for your computer to set alerts as well. If you start with a to-do list each day, you will get more satisfaction out of checking each task off as it gets done and feel more accomplished. Also see, Top 10 Tips to Balance Your Life.
Turn your phone to silent during times you need to get stuff done
This can be the case for your computer too. If you have apps or extensions that tell you when you have a new message, this can drastically reduce productivity. However, apps can also be used to GET MORE work done. I personally use the News Feed Eradicator Chrome extension to turn off my Facebook feed. I want to see what is happening with my friends, and honestly, with people I don’t even know that well and it’s easy to get sucked into that vortex.
The average person spends 3.5 hours on social media a day. It’s become entertainment for us, which is fine, but NOT while I’m trying to get work done. I just wanna get in and out quickly and efficiently.
Don’t over book yourself
As a person who has a hard time saying “no,” I totally get how hard this is. I am still working on it and really have to force myself to say “no.” In reality, it really is OK to say “no” to people if you just don’t think what you’re being asked to participate in will work with your schedule.
Listen, I get asked to do stuff all the time. I’m constantly bombarded with requests. It doesn’t mean that I have to skip a get together for a work meeting. You absolutely must ‘schedule’ in downtime too. If they don’t understand that, it’s not your problem, it’s theirs.
Secondly, when you do say “no,” I would encourage you to not feel like you have to give a reason. I have always done that. Given reasons and then it just opens people up to argue with me. It’s annoying. Like, I’m having a hard time enough saying “no” in the first place, I really don’t want to sit here and argue with you. This is my reason, done. But, that’s not how it goes. So, keep it brief. Don’t give a reason at all, and if you do, keep that reason brief.
Clean it up
Many people may not realize that having a disorganized physical environment can lead to stress and chaos. Try to strategize ways you can clean up your home, car, or office in order to stay on task more.
Cleaning will help de-stress, but it will also make each task faster, as you won’t have to hunt down things and important elements of your tasks every time you want to do them.
Work smarter, not harder
This is something that I am working on perfecting a routine for myself right now as well.
As a single mom of two little ones and absolutely no help in raising them, it’s tough running 6 businesses to provide for my family.
I work extremely hard; harder than you’d ever imagine, but is it smart? Is what I do, spinning my wheels and busying myself with all the day-to-day things, or am I reaching my goals, putting those goals as a priority. If I’m working for today, in 2 years, I’ll still be here: today; but if I’m working for 2 years down the line, in 2 years, I will have grown and be right on track of where I WANT to be.
Keep a small notepad and pen with you at all times
Keep a small notepad and pen in your bag, near your work space in your home, by your bed, in your purse, everywhere you think of ideas.
It never fails, I lay there at night ready to go to bed and all these ideas and thoughts flood me. I used to get up and down, up and down writing them down, which kept me awake longer. Now, I purchased a bedroom set with a light in the headboard and keep a small notebook and pen on the headboard. Boom, done!
It’s easy enough to jot down notes as they come to mind. While phones have notepad apps, sometimes a good old-fashioned piece of paper is fastest, and if you are like me, I have honestly lost a lot of notes. I don’t know how, but my phone erases them. I can’t figure out what triggers it, so for me, it’s safer on paper!
Keep a schedule
It used to be that only busy professionals or college students kept a day planner with their day’s activities mapped out on it. In reality, scheduling your tasks, appointments and to-do lists can help you spread your work over the week and not leave you running crazy at the last-minute and ultimately, help you get more done each day. I like to use this free printable weekly planner.
On it, I have 1 main house chore to focus on that day to maintain an orderly home, and split out my tasks through-out the week, so that I’m not overwhelmed. I admit freely, that I never get everything on that list done, as it grows and expands through-out the week, I have to re-prioritize. Something that also helps me is by numbering things every day. Okay, this is priority #1, this is #2, and so on. Getting the most important things in my day done first.