There’s never enough time in the day to get everything done. Perhaps you’re a busy mother trying to keep up with family and work. Maybe you’ve promised more than you’re able to deliver to clients and now you’re snowballed with deadlines. It isn’t easy to be continuously productive, but you may be able to save yourself some time at work with these simple tips.
Keep Things Organized
Having clutter around can be one of the biggest distractions. They say that a cluttered desk leads to a cluttered mind, so if you want to get things done, get organized. Creating an organized space will mean you know exactly where everything is when you need it. Having a space that’s tidy will help to reduce your stress. When you have a to-do list as long as your arm, seeing an unorganized space in front of you will only serve to increase your stress levels.
Get Off Social Media
You probably don’t need to be told that social media can be one of the biggest distractions during working hours. Whether you’ve got windows open on your computer or your phone is constantly vibrating due to notifications, the time all adds up. You can save yourself time at work by limiting the amount of time you spend on social media. You can even use online tools to monitor how long you’ve been on social media and it will tell you when your time is up.
The last thing you want to do is walk into work feeling sluggish. The energy you present in the morning sets you up for the rest of the day, so it’s important to feel motivated. Doing some exercise in the morning before work will give you the boost you need to tackle your day head on. Whether you choose something as mild as Yoga or as intense as sprinting, it will help to stop those lulls in energy throughout the day.
There are tons of time saving tools you can make use of online. From scheduling your work calendar to the benefits of cloud computing for businesses, you’ll be surprised what you can find. It’s one of the best ways to manage your time online. You can even use sites like Basecamp to communicate with colleagues and send documents back and forth. It can be especially handy for anyone working remotely that may not see clients and colleagues face-to-face on a regular basis.
Always Be Prepared
When you know you have a lot of work the next day, don’t just bury your head in the sand and hope for the best. Preparing for your day will help you deal with your to-do list in a much better way. Thinking of what you need to do and creating a list accordingly will help you prioritise your work for the next day. That way, when you start the day, you’ll have immediate clarity on what you need to do, rather than spending your first hour stressed about how to get it all done.
Hydration is vital when it comes to doing work properly. Not only does it mean you’re less likely to develop headaches from hours of screen time but staying hydrated also increases your energy levels. Drinking water throughout the day will mean that you’ll be forced to take frequent bathroom breaks, meaning you’ll have to get up and walk away from your desk. This is healthier than staying sat down all day and walking away from your desk will help to refocus your brain when you hit an energy lull.
Many people find that the points brought up during meetings could easily be covered in an email. There are plenty of times when meetings are a waste of time that could otherwise be used to be productive. If you’re finding that meetings are cutting into production time on a regular basis, it may be time to reduce the number of meetings you’re having. That doesn’t mean having to reduce communication with clients or colleagues; just find another method that doesn’t take up everyone’s time.
When you’re up against it, it’s easy to assume that sitting and working as hard as you can and skipping breaks will get more done. However, the opposite is often true. The harder you push yourself, the more mistakes you’re likely to make. You can save yourself time by giving yourself the breaks you deserve. Not only do you need to eat and drink for nourishment and energy, but you also need to step away from what you’re doing for a while to gain new perspective. It’s the best way to problem solve when something comes up at work.
It’s sometimes difficult to prioritize work that’s just come in. However, when you use the two-minute rule, it becomes easier. If the task takes less than two minutes, it can be done right away. If it takes more than two minutes, it can be saved for another time. Short tasks are often easier to get done first thing in the morning, leaving the rest of the day for the bigger projects. For example, many people answer their emails or social media messages in the morning.
Hire a VA
A virtual assistant could take some of the burden off your shoulders. Admin tasks like managing social media profiles, answering emails and calls and setting up meetings could be done by someone else, freeing up your time to work on more important things. Finding a VA means you can hire for as long as is necessary, but you aren’t under any obligation to provide a fixed-term contract. So, if you have a seasonal business and you only require help for a certain amount of time, hiring someone who is freelance and works remotely makes perfect sense.