You know the problem: tons of things want you to get them done, and your schedule is already full to bursting. You’d like to introduce 72-hour days, as that would finally give you enough time for all projects. But days only have 24 hours. Keep cool, because efficiency and success can be planned if you know how.
Sometimes, small changes to your work schedule are all it takes to make you get work done more successfully, and even more importantly, much faster.
Success does not mean working longer, but just making better, and more productive use of your time.
In this article, you’ll learn four strategies that are guaranteed to get your everyday work more focused, and more efficient.
Being Efficient Means Making Better Use of Your Time
With today’s tips, you’ll be able to check off your to-dos a lot faster, leaving more time for the things you truly care about.
Every day, freelancers and employees have to fight a problem that just originates from faulty plans.
The lack of time. In many cases, it is caused by daily to-do lists that are more reminiscent of a novel than a doable list of daily tasks.
However, the actual problem is hidden in a different spot, as humans and their various abilities certainly can solve the most difficult tasks in no time, if the focus is right.
Focus is key when it comes to a successful way of working. Too many tasks to switch in between of are too much for our brain to handle. It always takes a certain “training period” when having to switch between tasks.
Focus Gets You More Time
Many people are making the mistake of letting their thoughts jump around between tasks. Not only does this cost you time, but it is also reflected in the result. The quality of the single completed tasks drops, and in the worst case, none of the tasks is completed.
Imagine a piece of paper on a beautiful summer day. Put it on a meadow and hope that it inflames. Of course, this won’t work.
To inflame it, you need a magnifier that lets you focus the sunlight onto one point. Only then will the paper burn. Thus, use the law of concentration, and you’ll be able to get your tasks done purposefully and quickly.
Strategy One: Work Down Your ToDo List Depending on Priority
This one is tough to do, I know. But it’s one of the best pieces of advice I can give you. Every evening, write down a to-do list for the next day, placing the most important tasks at the very top. The most important things come first, the less important ones follow.
Always start your day with the most important, most difficult task. Don’t get distracted, close your email client, and focus exclusively on this one task. Only once this is done, go for the other tasks.
This way, you start off your day with substantial success. Then, the remaining tasks seem like child’s play. This helps you push your self-esteem, and you’ll assume successful working habits.
You will be able to get your work done much faster. It will also help you get done blog posts quicker. This leaves you with enough time for other things – like your family, for example.
Strategy Two: Use Your Focus Technique!
Even really successful people sometimes struggle to focus and keep up the focus until the end of a task. To circumvent this problem, the “Pomodoro Technique” by Francesco Cirillo is a good pick.
This technique is as simple as it is effective, and will help you get through these moments.
It Works Like This:
- Turn off all sources of distraction. No smartphone, no Facebook or Twitter, no distraction from colleagues or family.
- Set a classic egg timer to 25 minutes and work very focused for these 25 minutes. When working with a colleague in an office, put on headphones if it could be helpful for your concentration.
- After the 25 minutes are done, take a 5-minute break. Get up, stretch, breathe in fresh air at the opened window.
- Now, start the next 25 minutes of highly focused work.
- After the fourth session, take a longer break of 15 to 25 minutes.
This method helps thousands of people to work off their daily to-do lists quickly and successfully. By the way, Francesco Cirillo used a tomato-shaped egg timer to measure the 25-minute units, hence the name.
Strategy Three: Work Standing Up Sometimes
Many successful people have worked standing up. This doesn’t mean that you should work exclusively standing up, but from time to time, you should. Use a high desk for your job, if possible.
Standing up, you’ll also feel a lot less tired, making you more productive. Thus, it is no surprise that successful people like Winston Churchill, Leonardo da Vinci, or Ernest Hemingway liked working at a high desk.
Divide your work time into blocks, and try to work standing up for a part of them. If your employer doesn’t want to pay for a high desk, I recommend buying one from your own money and using it in the office. At home, you can also set up a place for working standing up.
Even modern and innovative businesses like Google, Facebook, and SAP use height-adjustable desks, as these companies know that their workers are more productive, healthier, and happier due to standing up more frequently.
Strategy Four: When Writing, Always Work On a Timer
You have to write a lot due to your job or in private? Writing is like any other craft. To be able to write faster, leaving you with more time for other things, there are two factors.
1 – Practice Makes Perfect
The more often you write, the faster you’ll be able to write. Practice makes perfect and automatically results in a higher pace. However, if you just started out blogging, focus on the quality of your articles. Speed automatically comes with practice.
2 – Always Write Against a Timer
Get a countdown program, where you get to enter a certain time which will then be counted down. Starting out, you should be able to write an article with more than 1000 words in about three to four hours. So, first set a timer to four hours, and see how this time works for you.
Once you’re more experienced with writing and don’t have to search for every single key on the keyboard, challenge yourself to see how you can handle two hours. This would be the time in which experienced writers should be able to get done. Either way, this technique will definitely allow you to write faster; I’m using it as well.