Make Your 2018 Your Most Productive Year Yet!
Here you have it – a new year, a new, better you. Right? While we have faith that you’ll see your lofty ambitions and admirable goals through to 2019, statistics say a mere 8 percent of people are successful in achieving their New Year’s Resolutions (curse you, statistics!). The best way to ensure you stick to your resolutions is to set clear goals and commit to them. Here are our tips to keep you on your game at work so 2018 is your most productive year ever!
Give Yourself a Break
Taking time off probably isn’t your first thought when tackling your to-do list, but, paradoxically, it can actually help you get more done. A 2011 University of Illinois study found that brief diversions from a task can dramatically improve your ability to focus on that task for prolonged periods. Feeling stuck on a project? Take a break! You might be surprised by the new perspective a few minutes away can give you to help you tackle that project from a different angle.
One sure way to unwind and get motivated is to interact with like-minded individuals. Socializing is a proven road to boosting your productivity as well as your happiness at work. Meeting a friend for lunch or even just enjoying a quick break in the great outdoors can be all the time away you need to refresh. Plus, spending time in nature is good for your immune system (#nosickdays2018) and has been shown to improve focus and relieve stress!
It should come as no surprise that the first step to getting organized at work is organizing your workspace. Use the six-month rule when clearing your desk of clutter – if you haven’t used it in six months, you don’t need it. See? That didn’t hurt one bit. But staying organized, now that is a much more trying task. These are two of our favorite task management apps:
Todoist – The great thing about Todoist is that it is available across 13 platforms. You can use it on your desktop at the office, or use the iOS app to keep you organized on the go! In addition to the simple layout, it uses human dates like “Feb 12 @ 2p” and doesn’t take long to enter a task than it does to complete it. For example, click + and type “Post blog ev Thurs” and it adds “Post blog” to your task list every Thursday. It doesn’t get much easier than that.
Evernote - This is the app for you if you’re looking for a way to store more than just tasks. With Evernote, you can store notes, videos, photos, voice recordings, web pages, and even email content to an Evernote folder. One of the primary reasons a lot of offices choose Evernote is because it creates an easy way to collaborate with coworkers who are also using the app. You can task projects, chat with team members, and send presentations seamlessly.
One thing at a time
Do you sometimes feel like a superhero, having to juggle five different projects at once? Only to realize that your powers start dwindling when these tasks fall through the cracks. We oftentimes believe that multitasking is a gift from the gods of productivity that saves us time and enhances our performance. On the contrary, scientists say that switching rapidly between tasks can actually make us less efficient in the long run. For ultimate productivity, try focusing on one thing at a time with these easy tips:
- Engage your senses. You don’t want to completely cut out any outside noise that may interfere with your work ethic. For instance, playing some instrumental music in the background can help you maintain concentration.
- Work in chunks. It’s no surprise that the longer you work, the more obvious your distractions become. As much as the human brain is built to innovate, it’s Achilles’ heel bears the downfall of a fairly short attention span. To lighten up your workload, you can segment your responsibilities into manageable time slots.
- Reward yourself. Completing each new task is no easy feat. Keep your motivation high by remembering to reward yourself after each job well done. Whether it means going for a walk, eating a treat or chatting with coworkers, you’ll be sure to work harder next time in anticipation of the break.
Now that you’ve focused long enough to read this article, I’d say you deserve a break. After all, science says it’s good for you! Write out your resolutions for the New Year and dominate 2018.