Being at the helm of a start-up, I always try to figure out how to increase my productivity and get more things done. We all have the same amount of time in our hands, the way we use it makes all the difference. So I got thinking about the various ways in which I can increase and improve my productivity not only in work but in my life in general. You need to improve your productivity not only in your work life but also in personal life. I had tried a handful of things, experimenting with different methods. Some improved my productivity; some did not make much of a difference. So after careful perusal, I came up with these four small changes that you can make in your habit to improve your productivity:
Stop multitasking: focus on one thing at a time
Many people think that simultaneously working on two or three things help them to get more things done at the same time. Contrary to people actually believe, multitasking in the truest sense is not possible. Our brain switches from one task to another in a quick span of time. This decreases our ability to concentrate on a particular task and you will end up taking more time than usual to complete the same task. Multitasking can have adverse effects too such as affecting your short term memory as well as your permanent memory.
So demarcate your time to particular tasks, avoid multitasking. Check your emails or chats only after you complete your work or before you begin. Don’t check notifications in between work.
Block notifications from social media on phone and computer
Taking cue from the fact that multitasking is bad for productivity, blocking notifications from social media while working is a must. Checking just a simple text can lead to an elaborate conversation, updating your Facebook status might lead to wasting 2 hours there. In our Smartphones, there are tons of apps fighting for our attention. There is a sale at Amazon, a special discount at makemytrip, a new tv series on Netflix etc. All of these can break your concentration and hog up your time. Block notifications or put your phone in airplane mode when you really need to concentrate.
Our jobs compel us to sit throughout the day. Prolonged sitting reduces the blood flow in our body. Movement is necessary to maintain an optimal flow of blood to our brain, which is crucial for increasing productivity. It has been shown in studies that healthy employees are more productive. Increased movement can improve motor function, attention and even cognitive speed, which combined together, can have a significant improvement in your productivity.
Take a walking meeting rather than a sitting one, take a lap around the office space, go to periodic walks etc. It is a great way to bolster your productivity.
Taking middle of the week off for being in the zone
We all have plans to achieve certain goals in a week. But somewhere down the line, we lose track of the goals we had in mind. So I usually take a day off, preferably wednesday off to reflect on what I have done and what I want to achieve rest of the week. This time off allow me to improve my craft and focus on my productivity. So at the trailing end of the week, I still remained focussed on my goals for that particular week.
Originally published at medium.com