It’s extremely easy to get distracted in today’s world. Between cell phones, internet videos, social media and relaxation breaks that go on a little too long, it’s a miracle any of us make time for the tasks we need to complete each day.
Whether you’re trying to become a more productive employee, entrepreneur, parent, or just trying to knock a few more items off your regular to-do list, this article will be beneficial for you.
Humans Struggle With Productivity
If I’m being honest, I should admit that I’ve struggled with productivity for years—I’m sure some of you feel the same way. Even though I outline a list of tasks to complete at the beginning of each day, work tirelessly throughout the day to complete those tasks and take periodic breaks to refresh my mind, I still find myself getting distracted. When I get distracted, there’s nothing left to do but throw productivity out the window.
Because this has become such a problem in my life, I’ve recently implemented a three-step approach that has improved my ability to focus on the tasks at hand and as a result, my overall productivity. If you’re like me and you struggle to make every day productive, try out these three tips. I’m confident you’ll get the same results that I did.
The Three Biggest Threats to Productivity
#1: Delaying Important Decisions
You may discount this tip as being irrelevant to your current situation, but if you take an in-depth look at your daily routine you might discover that you’re guilty of frequently putting important decisions on the back burner like a lot of other people, myself included.
Delaying important decisions is easy to do, because you always believe there will be a better time to act. Unfortunately this is far from the truth, and the longer you delay the easier it will be to make a rash decision, or even no decision at all. You’ll also feel the decision weighing on you each day, which will make being productive a lot more difficult. The best solution is to give yourself a reasonable time-frame to make the important decision, work through all the options, and then act immediately.
#2: Focusing Too Much on the Future
There is nothing wrong with taking time each day to focus on your dreams of the future, but it’s best to set aside a specific time to do it. When 30 minutes of daydreaming becomes 2-3 hours, you’re productivity for the current day will quickly go down the drain.
If you’re having trouble focusing on what you need to get done today, try outlining your weekly and monthly goals at the beginning of each month, and then spend 30 minutes to an hour each day evaluating your progress. If you do this you’ll be able to stay on track with your daily goals, and you’ll also be able to track how you’re doing with your long-term plan. If you really want to enjoy the success and abundance you’re dreaming of you need to work today or your dreams will stay dreams forever.
#3: Being a Perfectionist
We’ve all heard this one before: You can’t expect to be perfect, so why do you bother to try?
I personally don’t agree that it’s unwise to chase perfection, but I also feel that you need to be realistic with your goals. If you hesitate to complete personal projects because they aren’t “perfect”, you’re traveling down the wrong road. I’m not saying you need to rationalize poor work and effort, but you need to understand that doing your best doesn’t always mean it will turn out the way you expected it to. The truth is if you’re expecting perfection you will never be satisfied with anything you do.
If you struggle with this concept as I do, try putting a limit on the number of times you can rework or edit a project. I usually give myself two or three times to make needed changes, and after that I call it good. Implementing this tip will allow you more time to work on other tasks and you’ll be more productive as a result.
If you want to be more productive in your everyday life, try making important decisions immediately, avoid focusing too much on the future, and don’t obsess over perfection. If you follow these tips you will live a happier, more abundant and successful life.