This post was also featured on Lifehack.org.
People who are insanely productive have developed habits that produce the most results. If you want to match their productivity, it’d be wise to follow their lead.
Moreover, as you discover the habits that work best for you, you’ll realize that they’ll ultimately make you work much better every day. Be consistent with these habits and you’ll reap the rewards.
Resolve to become more productive every week beginning today by adopting into your daily habits these 5 things insanely productive people have in common.
1. They begin each day with a focused mind
Focus is their key to productivity. They never allow their minds to wander when they begin a new work day.
They accomplish this by removing possible distractions in their work area. They know that when people are continuously distracted it’s difficult to focus. An organized mind can accomplish much even in a short time; it gets into the groove and easily gets lost in the flow.
One of the most effective ways to remain focused is to make sure you’re comfortable while working. Make sure your chair and desk are at the right height so you can work with ease.
2. They make sure their weekly tasks contribute to a bigger goal.
They ask themselves how mundane tasks fit into the big picture. They look at each task’s significance in relation to their business goals and aspirations. This bigger reason motivates them to complete small tasks.
According to the author of “Smarter Faster Better,” Charles Duhigg, know the relevance of a small action toward a greater objective makes it easier to link our smaller efforts to our bigger goals.
3. They master their time to master their life
It’s a given – time is the most precious asset. Each week we have a finite amount of time – 7 days with only 24 hours each.
Ultra-productive people know how to maximize each minute they have. They allot time for every task they need to do every day. This time constraint forces them to accomplish the task no matter what.
They unwind by taking breaks every time they complete an assignment. This will recharge their batteries in between tasks. They may listen to music, go for a short walk, or watch a relaxing video while sipping their favorite drink. That way, they can relax a bit before diving into a new assignment.
4. They understand the difference between “important” and “urgent”
Productive people know the difference between important and urgent. Professional organizer Alison Kero, founder of ACK Organizing, says it’s key to understand “important and urgent are two different things – many things are urgent, and that’s usually determined by someone who expects an immediate answer.”
If you get sidetracked by urgent but unimportant issues, you waste your time solving needless things instead of paying attention to what matters.
5. They get rid of their current to-do list
If their to-do list is overloaded with items they weren’t able to do last week, or last month, they do something about it. They make changes.
Iyyappan Chandramouleeswaran suggests limiting your list to three to five items every day. This will make you more productive.
Conversely, Forbes contributor Kevin Kruse recommends ditching your to-do list altogether. Turns out, in interviews with extremely successful people, Kruse discovered that not one of them use to-do lists! Along with other reasons, to-do lists don’t account for time, so we tend to skip to the easiest tasks first.
Instead of using to-do lists, Kruse suggests working with a calendar. This way, you can plan exactly which task to complete first and how much time you’ll spend on it.
6. They don’t work on a task more than once
They avoid putting things on hold to only have to deal with them again later. They tackle incoming chores once and move on. Many times people read the same email only to stop, close it, and later on open it again. Productive people handle items as they come up – or they delegate.