A new year signifies a fresh start, full of goals that you'd like to accomplish in the next 12 months. Learning how to be more productive with your time will help you achieve those goals. Here are some ways to make the most of your time:
- Prioritize As soon as you set foot in your office, create a list of things you need to accomplish that day. Once your list is finished, read it and determine which task is the most important and place it on the top of your list. Next, place the second most important task and so on. Place tasks that are the least appealing or most challenging at the top. You will feel more productive once you have those things crossed off your list.
- Inform If you have a string of people or just an individual depending on you for a project, keep them informed of your status. If you are overwhelmed and running late on deadlines, let people know. Being honest about your status will instill trust and respect with your coworkers. Don't avoid or ignore someone who's depending on you for a task.
- Environment Take a look at your work environment. A majority of your time is spent here. Does it make you feel energized and able to focus on your job? If not, maybe it's time for an office makeover. Bring in a lamp to create soft light. Purchase a plant. Put up photos and plaques to make your workspace a place that inspires you instead of drains you.
- Activate In the words of the famous footwear campaign, "Just do it." Sometimes you have to buckle down and push yourself through a project. Prolonging or avoiding a task will only make matters worse. Force yourself to work on the dreaded task for one hour and try to get as much done as you can. Working on the project in small increments of time will help you focus on the assignment and get it crossed off your list.
- Rest Pushing yourself through a tough project is one thing, but knowing when to take a break is important. If you've hit a wall and you're not making any progress then it's time for a break. Leave your workspace and take a walk around the office. Focus on another task until you feel ready to approach the project again. Avoiding a task doesn't help anything or anyone, but taking a break can allow you to take a mental break and refresh your perspective on the job.
Get more helpful advice in many of Dave's business and leadership recommended readings.