Life is busy right? We are all juggling work life, emails, perhaps starting or running a blog, social media, social lives. Yet I still don’t understand why when my to do list is 2 pages long, I have a pile of admin and a full inbox, I sometimes sit and watch an hour of youtube videos or scroll through endless apps on my phone achieving nothing! And I LOVE my work so what stops me being productive? I am actually asking you because I really don’t know. However what I have done is compile a list of helpful productivity tips that I know help me massively when I’m having a watching cats do funny things day…
1. Put your phone on silent and out of reach!
I can’t even just have my phone on silent with the screen turned down next to my macbook when I’m trying to work on something because that apple symbol will still tempt me! I put my phone out the room and on silent for 30 minutes at a time and smash my emails or write a blog post, this is the only way I won’t get distracted. Then you can go and check your phone for a couple of minutes every 30 minutes. You’ll be amazed at how much more you get done and I promise you won’t miss much.
2. Buy flowers and keep your desk tidy.
I’m a big believer that a cluttered space equals a cluttered mind and as much as I come across as a very organised person I feel like in reality I am constantly fighting to stay on top of clutter and stuff! Simply having some flowers next to me, a candle lit and a tidy desk space helps me focus and feel professional even if under my desk are piles of books and unorganised folders.
3. Set deadline and priorities on your to do list.
Writing an endless to do list is no good for me as I used to just write down everything in my mind meaning something with no urgency like “research cookery courses” will go next to “write important article due today” which then might have “buy brother birthday card” under it. It’s so hard to figure out where to start with lists like this. Organising a to do list might be a bit too far for some people but I now have three lists. One for non work related things, one for urgent work related things and one for things I know I need to do one day when I have the time. With the urgent work related list I will put the deadline but then also the time and day I will do the task so that it’s carved out in my diary.
4. Take breaks and change your focus.
At school we would have 30 minute to 1 hour classes of a subject followed by a 10 minute break and then our attention would be on a fresh new task. We’d get a good hour lunch break and then spend the afternoon doing new activities to energise us in the afternoon. Now we are adults we are expecting to have huge attention spans and be able to stay inspired and motivated for 8 hours at our desk working on the same project or endless email list. I like to work on something for 30 minutes like a blog post; take a little break and then change my focus so I’ll attack my newsletter or email list or edit a video.
5. Increase your speed.
I feel like I’m just quite a slow person at tasks. Cleaning the inside of my kitchen cupboards once took me all day! What was I doing!? My finances take me a good few hours once a month and I can spend a good matcha latte deliberating the wording of an email. I simply started to try and speed up a bit and realised I could get so much more done, just as well but quicker. As I move through a list of to dos speedier, it motivates me to get more and more done.
So don’t get me wrong I still have days where I just cannot focus and I allow for those days too because sometimes they are when my next creative idea will come or I’ll see something that sparks a new passion inside me but when it’s time to get stuff done this is my go to guide!
Love, Lottie x