Your productivity is a reflection of your routines. How you structure your routine and what you consciously and consistently do every day will decide how productive you are. So, productivity management is, essentially, time management. If you want to be productive, managing your time should be your top priority.
Whether it’s in your personal life or professional life, it can be hard to juggle all the things that you have to do and still manage to be your most productive self. But we all know that one person who seems to ALWAYS get EVERYTHING done. How exactly do they do it?
These exceptionally productive individuals don’t possess any kind of superpower, secret knowledge, or extra-special intelligence. They know how to make their routines work for them. They don’t do one special thing once in a while to increase their productivity. They do several ordinary things that cumulatively help them be extraordinary at productivity management.
At HeyCollab, we have identified seven key ways in which we believe you can find a routine that makes you the most productive.
7 ways to create a routine for maximum productivity
Productive people know that it’s not about working harder. Integrating these seven tactics into your routine doesn’t take much effort. But once these steps become part of your routine, you’ll notice a significant improvement in your productivity.
- Focus on the most important task first and break it into smaller pieces
The key to increasing productivity is identifying your most important tasks. These are what need to be addressed and handled first. The most important tasks shouldn’t be lost in the minutiae of administrative chores.
Once you identify the most important tasks, handle them when you know you’ll be energetic. Secondly, if it happens to be a larger or complex task, break it down into smaller, more manageable tasks. This will also give you a sense of victory as you accomplish them.
- Know your strengths and peak hours
Understanding your productivity zone is crucial to productivity management. The most productive people know when they’re at their best and where they will be more efficient. The trick is to schedule the most important tasks – the ones that require deep work – for your productive zones.
If you’re not a morning person, focus on less mindful tasks and to-do’s early on. This could be when you respond to emails or calls. Leave your peak afternoon hours for the more complex tasks that require more brainpower. The same goes for those who perform better in the morning.
- Take breaks
Everyone knows the importance of taking breaks but people usually go for one big break in the middle of the day. For better productivity management, it would be more helpful to take multiple short breaks at scheduled intervals after marking zones for productive work. This will also help you schedule those zones for specific tasks.
Time block your day and break everything into 45-minute blocks. Set a timer and take a 10-15 minute break at the end of every task. You can also try the Pomodoro Technique and have 25-minute blocks of uninterrupted work followed by five minutes of breaks.
Figure out how you want to use your breaks. You can for a walk, fold some laundry, or catch up on emails during this time.
- Avoid multitasking
If you want to be good at tracking your time, here’s one truth you should know: Multitasking is a myth. This is counterintuitive to popular wisdom but multitasking is grossly ineffective. You won’t be able to focus on any of the tasks since you would be making frequent switches. Plus, it’s extremely exhausting.
Focusing on a single task increases the likelihood of getting it done. When you set your timer and focus on that one task for 45 minutes, close other computer tabs, remove outside distractions, and put yourself in a position where you can focus solely on that task.
Here’s a pro tip from some of the experts at HeyCollab: Maximize the screen and you’ll decrease potential distractions.
- Track your time
Want to get better at managing your time and productivity? Start tracking your time. Usually, people guess how long they would need to get a task done and hardly compare it with the actual amount of time that task would take. A smarter way to do this is by using a time tracking tool.
With an advanced time tracking tool, you’ll know how much time you take for tasks, which will help you plan for specific tasks. Once you start measuring, you’ll be more accurate in scheduling tasks. This will help you better manage deadlines.
- Keep a list or management system
To improve productivity, you need to know what you’ll be working on. You also need to prioritize tasks and block time for them. To effectively do all that, you need to track your time. It’s easy for you to miss out on things if you list them in your head or on paper. What you need is a tool specifically designed for lists and task management.
Utilizing a modern task management system for your personal and professional tasks can help you not only keep track of your list but also help you break each task down into more manageable pieces.
- Learn to say no
Perhaps the most underrated aspect of productivity management is the ability to simply say no. Whatever you’re doing should be according to your schedule as per your task management system. If anything else comes up, whether it’s a meeting or a phone call, or an administrative chore, refuse to accept it.
While that would be clear to most people, it’s also important to say no to your urge to be distracted. Say no to that temptation to check your social media feed. Say no to the urge to go doom-scrolling. Stay in the moment and stay focused.
In a world filled with distractions, finding a routine that makes you productive isn’t easy. That’s why you need HeyCollab to automate some of your efforts like time tracking, task management, and communication with others so you can focus on what you need to do.