Connect with us

Life

5 Questions You Need To Ask Yourself in Order to Remain Productive

Published

on

how to be productive

Distractions are everywhere. You don’t have to go far to find them in the physical world or online. How you navigate these distractions, and the singularity of your focus can have a lot to do with your level of success.

You’ve mapped out your goals, and you know where you want to be, it’s just a matter of sticking with it, and making sure that you are working on the right tasks.

Here are five questions to ask yourself to make sure that you are truly avoiding distractions as you work:

1. What are the three or four things you have to get done today?

It’s important to close out every day feeling like you’ve moved the ball forward. Take a good look at your schedule, and prioritize. It’s easy to write a dozen things on a to-do list, and get frustrated. But what are the things that truly need to get done to feel like you’ve advanced your position? Make sure those happen.

“The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.” – Stephan Covey

2. Does this fit your larger plan?

It’s not always something in our surroundings or online that distracts us. We can easily become distracted by an idea. Make sure your idea is in alignment with your plans. If it’s not something carrying you toward your larger goal, maybe it should wait. Make sure there’s a real purpose behind the ways you spend your time.

 

3. What are you doing early in the morning and late at night?

It’s easy to complain about not having the time to do something, and then spend three hours watching television at the end of the night. It’s also easy to start your day in your inbox and respond to others’ agendas before advancing your own. If you start between 6 and 7, and/or finish between 5 and 6, you have built in time to focus on your project without communication distractions. Pick the end of the workday that works for you, and try to find a window that won’t be swamped with people trying to get a hold of you.

 

4. Is what you’re doing now necessary or productive?

It’s easy to spend time perusing your social media and telling yourself it’s for the good of your business. Building a digital platform is hugely important for any business, but it’s important to be honest with yourself regarding whether your current task is helping that endeavor. This question is good for different scenarios as far as running your business as well. Ask yourself whether what you are making or doing is truly helping you reach those larger goals. And be honest in your answer.

“Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning, and focused effort.” – Paul J. Meyer

5. Do you know what you want out of tomorrow?

Before you power down and walk away, spend five minutes thinking about tomorrow. Find those three or four things that need to get done and jot them down. You can always carry a notebook with you and jot down additional ideas after you walk away.

It’s easier than ever to get derailed and distracted in business and in life. It takes a concerted effort to stay on task. Make sure that you are doing everything you can to meet your business goals and stick with the projects that will help you win the day.

Advertisement
2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Vikash Sharma

    Sep 19, 2016 at 4:57 pm

    Hi Matt,

    This is really an awesome post. I agree with all your points especially with Point no. 3 “What are you doing early in the morning and late at night?” This is absolutely correct that some us us just waste our many hours in morning and evening doing unnecessary things like watching TV etc.
    It is always advisable to start your day some early. I used to wake up at 8:30 -9AM but slowly I changed and now I wake up at 6AM and believe me I have seen phenomenal changes. Now, I never complain that I don’t have time for doing anything.
    Overall, a great article! Thank you for sharing this with us.

  2. traditional wears

    Sep 15, 2016 at 8:32 am

    Really very informative post, thanks.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Life

The 3 Types of Confidence You Need to Know and Understand

Published

on

the different types of confidence
Image Credit: Unsplash

We’ve all heard it before, confidence is everything. Those that seem to have it, have it all. They, themselves, are not necessarily perfect human beings, but they seemingly have the charisma to attract whatever they want in life. (more…)

Continue Reading

Life

3 Simple Tips to Strengthen Your Emotional Intelligence for Better Relationships

Published

on

how to build better relationships
Image Credit: Unsplash

Relationships are challenging. They make you examine yourself from all angles, and that can be triggering. For example, have you ever had a friend or significant other say something that sparked an argument instantly—only to find out you misheard what they said in the first place? (more…)

Continue Reading

Life

If You Want to Avoid Failure Once and for All, Ask Yourself These 4 Questions

Published

on

how to avoid failure
Image Credit: Pixabay

You just invested in yourself and in your business. You are taking massive action but the results are just not clicking yet. While everyone is making 10X, 20X, and even 100X ROI on their initial investment, you have made $0 return. Failure is starting to overcast your bright shining positive attitude and you are feeling the pain and shame of it. (more…)

Continue Reading

Life

3 Simple Hacks That Can Recharge Your Willpower and Help You Perform Better at Work

Published

on

willpower
Image Credit: Pixabay

How many times did you wake up feeling like you could conquer the world? You set ambitious goals for the day, you put on your best attire and walked out the door with a big smile on your face but eventually, life took over. Traffic, emails, work, family, and everything else you have around slowly but steadily started to drain your energy and made you feel exhausted.

You run out of battery, and the only solution that seemed viable was to rely on more caffeine. When that stopped working, all the temptations around you started to look much more appealing, and that sense of drive and commitment you had before slowly faded away. This is you running out of willpower.

Willpower: what is it? Why is it limited?

The American Psychology Association describes willpower as “the ability to resist short-term temptations in order to meet long-term goals.” In the book “The Willpower Instinct”, Dr. Kelly McGonigal, explains how every person’s willpower is limited, and slowly depletes throughout the day. The more “willpower challenges” you face, the quicker your reserve drains. Dr. McGonigal divided the different types of willpower challenges you might encounter in three categories:

  • I will: We face this type of challenge whenever we should do something, but we simply don’t feel like getting it done right now.
  • I won’t: We face this challenge when we try to resist temptation, or we try to keep cool in stressful situations.
  • I want: This is a particular type of challenge where we keep track of our long term goals, dreams, and desires. In this instance, we feel like we should take action right now to come one step closer to the goal. 

It’s easy to recognize it when you face a willpower challenge because you literally “feel it in your body.” Imagine being really hungry and walking in front of a bakery. The sight and the smell of pastries quickly triggers an “I won’t” type of challenge, and it takes a severe amount of effort and energy to walk away.

Every time you manage to win one of those challenges, a little bit of your willpower reserve gets used. The more challenges you face daily, the harder it will be to stay true to your goals.

Can you train or recharge your willpower?

A growing body of research suggests that willpower should be considered a muscle. To strengthen it, you should exercise it regularly, but you should not overwork it. Therefore, we shouldn’t try to “be good” at all times. Instead, we should learn how to relax and recharge our willpower.

The general advice on how to improve willpower involves sleep, proper nutrition, and regular exercise. This broad and general recommendation is often not downright applicable by most, because it consists of changing various daily habits. Luckily, three very effective hacks have been discovered, that have an immediate effect on our willpower and take just a few minutes to apply.

Here are the 3 ways to refill your willpower reserves:

1. Focused breathing

Breathing, when done correctly, can stimulate the release of calming hormones while reducing the release of stress hormones like cortisol and catecholamines. To make this effective, you should deeply and slowly inhale through the nose for at least five seconds. Fill your belly with air first, then your chest, and when there’s no more space for air, still try to do tiny inhalations through the nose.

You should feel a pulling sensation around your neck and trapezius muscles. Once your lungs are full, try to hold the breath for five seconds, then slowly exhale through the mouth for at least five seconds. If you repeat this process ten to twenty times, you should feel dramatically more relaxed. Use this method several times a day, especially when you’re experiencing high levels of stress or anxiety.

2. Reward yourself when you accomplish a micro goal

According to a recent study, frequent instant rewards can boost motivation, and therefore, willpower. Creating your own reward system can help you to accomplish your to-do list, and also resist temptations. Since every individual has different tastes, you should come up with creative ideas about the small and frequent rewards you will give yourself upon winning any willpower challenge.

You can see this hack in practice in Apps like the popular Duolinguo, where after completing each lesson you get presented with a chance to open a treasure chest. This rewarding system seems to keep the users much more likely to keep learning new lessons.

3. Taking cold showers

Your body has an autonomic response to cold water. Getting into a cold shower is a difficult (but minor) willpower challenge on its own. As I previously mentioned, winning a willpower challenge strengthens your willpower muscle. Having a morning cold shower, on top of having multiple health benefits, will set you up for a positive winning streak of further challenges.

High performance is the sum of many small habits. Successful people don’t have an unlimited reserve of willpower, but they do have a set of daily rituals that made them succeed. These three hacks are some of the most effective techniques to develop willpower, but some of them may not fit every individual. You should try to find the perfect mix of daily practices that best fits your lifestyle and likes, so that you can strengthen your willpower muscle and perform better at work.

Continue Reading

Trending