10 Ways to Be More Productive


Want to become a more productive person? Here are 10 practices that will put you on the right track:

  1. Make a list of all the things you need to get done the night before.
  2. Order your list so that the things that must get done are at the top, and the less important things are at the bottom.
  3. Get a good night’s rest. Recent studies uphold the belief that 7 to 9 hours of restful sleep are necessary in order to allow the body to perform optimally.
  4. Eat a well-balanced breakfast of foods high in fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, and fruit, such as blueberries.
  5. Give yourself time in the morning. Nothing can upset a productive day like getting off on the wrong foot. Set two alarms if need be, but make sure you get up on-time and that you give yourself ample time to get ready and get to work without feeling rushed.
  6. Work in a place that inspires you. While you may not be able to change the color of the paint on the walls, you need at least to be comfortable. Make sure you have a good chair with a comfy cushion, a heater or fan to keep optimal temps, and a window or good lighting so your eyes never strain. Always remember that natural light is best, so if it’s possible to work in a room with windows, inspiration will come more quickly.
  7. Keep rules about answering the phone and email. Depending on the amount of incoming email and calls, you’ll need to set reasonable reply rules. After all, how can you accomplish your existing list if you have a constant barrage of new demands coming in? A good rule is to check and reply to email once in the morning and once in the afternoon. Once you set such a rule, make sure those impacted are aware of your policy so they are not held up in the process.
  8. Leverage the brains of others. Don’t ever let pride get in the way of tapping resources. If you get out of your cube and talk to teammates, you’ll likely discover that brainstorming helps you find some of the best ideas you’ve ever had.
  9. Get up and move around during breaks and at lunch. If you have the option, take a walk outside for fresh air and exercise.
  10. Review and revise. After a productive day, take a look back in review. What worked? What didn’t? What did you check off your list? How many things were left over? Don’t beat yourself up. Just take notes on how the day went and make wise decisions about what could be done differently so that tomorrow can be an even more productive day, and then adjust accordingly.

About Author

Amy Day

Amy Day is the Associate Publisher and a contributing writer for Strategy Magazine. She has an MBA in Marketing Communications and Strategic Leadership from Southern Methodist University and has been on staff with Strategy for nearly a decade. She is an award-winning business executive with customer service credentials from the Disney Institute. In addition to editorial oversight, her regular beat includes business, customer service, publishing, and family/child wellness.

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