It’s always nice to generate ideas around how you can make your business or personal life run like a machine. Have you ever wondered why it seems like two people who live relatively similar lives can have different networths or why one is more productive than the other? The key is that it comes down to how we use our time, it’s very simple we all have the same 24 hours in a day but how we use those hours can range wildly. No fear though, i’m going to help provide for you 10 ways you can increase your efficiency and productivity.
THE FIRST TASK
The first thing you have to do when you are trying to improve your efficiency and productivity is to analyze how you spend your time. The reason for doing this is to identify time vampires and what is sucking the life out of your day and sapping your time. Just to give you an example of potential time vampires they could include: TV Watching, needy friends/family, pointless conversations, etc..
I know what your thinking, how do I go about identifying those things that are wasting my time? First and foremost you have to look at how much time you are putting into certain activities. Create some structure for yourself so you can know when you are going off track. For instance, devote no more than an hour to watching TV a day so you can work on your goals. This will help you to find out whether or not something like the TV was causing you to lose a lot of time.
8 WAYS TO INCREASE PRODUCTIVITY AND EFFICIENCY
- Identify time wasters – We’ve already spoken about this above. Since we only have a finite amount of time daily to accomplish things we have to buy back time from other things that we are doing to ensure that we have time to get things done
- Create order and structure – As much as we like to all think we have the ability to just “wing it” with life we don’t. We need structure, and we need consistency, without those two pillars we won’t be able to build on a dream or a goal effectively and we will be wasting a lot of time, money and energy
- Make a schedule – Keeping a schedule is a great way to organize your life. Knowing when you’re going to do something, with who and where is top of the list when it comes to increasing productivity and efficiency. You should know what your week looks like in a snapshot so you can make time to work on the more important things
- Ruthlessly manage your time – No one is going to manage your time like you will, that’s why it’s so important to spend 80% of your time doing the things that help build towards your project or goals.
- Get rest – One of the most key components to being productive is having enough energy to discharge the responsibilities of the day. This means that at some point we have to put down our smartphones and go to bed. Make sure that your bedroom is comfortable and free from distractions so you can get quality sleep.
- Use hard systems – A hard system according to “E” Myth creator Michael Gerber is anything that forces a set of behaviors that doesn’t have emotions. So something like a file system in an office is a hard system. Hard systems solve soft system problems. Like, you’re having problems putting the right form in the right folder, creating a hard system like a filing system will help you to force good behaviors.
- Comfortable work environment – A comfortable work environment will help you to maintain high level of productivity while you are working. Perhaps an office with light that fosters creative thinking will help out with environment
- Mindset – By changing how you think about what needs to be done and when, you will be creating a winning mindset and you will be able to increase your output. You should make a positive affirmation every morning: “I will be productive today”!
Here's to your success,
It can be said that a large part of who we are comes from how we grew up or where we came from. The thought is that essentially our environment contributes to what we ultimately will become and who we will ultimately become. There are a number of strategies that one can use if they are trying to build a buisness or reach a goal to ensure they are successful, many of which we have spoken about in past blogs that I’ve written. Today, however we are talking about creating your environment in order to achieve the maximal amount of success possible everyday. Creating a proper working and thinking environment can foster creative ideas and strategies to help grow your business or personal success. Not everyone needs complete silence to work, but most people need a structured environment that fits their personal thought flow process.
HOW TO CREATE A DYNAMIC AND ENRICHING ENVIRONMENT THAT FOSTER PRODUCTIVITY
The first thing you should think about when creating your environment is when do you think you work the best. Is it in a quiet space, do you need to have music playing, do you like softer lighting or do you like to be in a specific room of the house. Once you’ve identified some of these triggers you can move on to shaping your work environment. I’ll give you an example of how I’ve set up my main work office so I can thrive. Since I have a great amount of sunlight in my office I typically turn off the florescent light so I can have natural sunlight in my office. I’ve also set up my workspace so I take off my shoes so I can be comfortable (something about not having my feet hot that relaxes me). So, those are a couple of tips that I use for my office. Here are some standard tips that many people have found that work for them:
5 ENVIRONMENT PRODUCTIVITY HACKS TO INCREASE WORKFLOW AND IDEAS
- TEMPERATURE CONTROL – There’s nothing like being too hot or too cold that affects the way we work. According to research reported in Men’s Health, workers are most productive in temperatures ranging between 71 and 77 degrees. After analyzing hundreds of workers, researchers found cooler temps were the top cause of afternoon productivity lags. This confirmed a 2004 study from Cornell University that found that temps of 68 degrees or lower in an office increased worker errors. As the temperature increased to between 68 and 77 degrees, typing errors dropped by 44 percent and typing output increased 150 percent.
- LIGHTING – If you remember I said I shut off the florescent light in my office, it’s because the natural light relaxes me and puts me at ease. there’s a 2012 study by Mirjam Muench that studied two separate groups of people—one who spent multiple work days in daylight and another who spent multiple days working in natural light. The study found more dramatic feelings of sleepiness at the end of the day in those who worked in artificial light. Scientists have theorized in recent years that artificial light has disrupted our body’s circadian rhythms, leading us to fall out of sync with the sun. There are plenty of things that affect our sleep already, let the natural light of the sun relax you while you work.
- NOISE – I tend to like low level noise when I work but check this out, In a study published by Cornell University, researchers reported finding higher levels of epinephrine in workers who were exposed to low levels of noise, when compared to workers exposed to no noise. This indicated workers exposed to noise were under higher levels of stress. Studies have shown office noise can lead to negative moods, inability to concentrate on a task, and even health issues after prolonged exposure…..but there’s a caviat: studies have also shown music can decrease productivity when a worker is conducting a task that requires focus. But when it’s a task a worker performs on a regular basis, music can actually increase concentration. So the debate wether or not music will distract you seems like it’s a personal decision rather than a scientific one.
- COMFORT – Who doesn’t like being uncomfortable at work? It’s why earlier I told you I have to take off my shoes at my desk, but now I know why: according to two new studies by Alan Hedge, Ph.D., CPE and Cornell University found that a comfortable working environment can do more than make workers happy: it can improve productivity as well. We found that the computer workers who had access to the adjustable work surfaces also reported significantly less musculoskeletal upper-body discomfort, lower afternoon discomfort scores and significantly more productivity,” Hedge, director of Cornell’s Human Factors and Ergonomics Laboratory, said in a press statement
- ORGANIZATION – When we are organized we are more productive. There’s nothing like trying to find something you need and it’s lost in a heap of invoices and papers from two or three weeks ago. Organization can also be a sign of wether or not we are happy or is there is something else going on. If you want to get more out of your planning time, try to create for yourself a way to organize your thoughts and work flow.
Here’s to your success,