With our daily distractions continuing to increase, it’s important to prepare for better productivity to have great days consistently.
We all want to use of our time well and be as productive as we can be. How we use our time impacts what we accomplish every day.
What is Productivity?
Productivity is defined as “the quality, state, or fact of being able to generate, create, enhance, or bring forth goods and services.”
It’s the act of producing something or an outcome. It’s easy to confuse busyness with being productive.
If we’re always busy, it doesn’t mean we’re producing the right things to enhance our lives.
Why is it Valuable to Prepare For Better Productivity?
The ability to be productive doesn’t just happen. We have to give it thought to produce the results we want.
If we prepare for better productivity every day, benefits we can expect include:
- More clarity on what we have to do.
- Greater levels of focus or concentration when working.
- Faster progress by working less.
- More free time.
- Increased satisfaction with what we’re accomplishing.
If we don’t prepare for better productivity, we put ourselves at risk of getting distracted. We may also end up wasting valuable time on things or activities that aren’t important.
A skill I learned during my university studies and career was how to manage projects well. Whenever I had a project to finish, it was easy for me to identify what needed to happen and by when.
That skill helped me during my management and leadership career. When I started my business, I applied the same skills to business-related projects. However, I knew I wasn’t as efficient as I could be.
I was often my biggest distraction. For things to improve, I had to prepare myself to be productive every day. This meant I had to project manage myself.
To prepare for better productivity, I established effective routines or rituals and used relevant productivity tools.
Today, there are specific things I do at the start and end of each day to have highly productive days. I established some of these through trial and error. Now, it’s rare to not feel I’ve had a productive day because of my routines or rituals.
5 Ways to Prepare For Better Productivity
By adopting simple practices, we can prepare for better productivity and set ourselves up to win. Here are five ways to prepare for better productivity so you can produce what matters most regularly.
- Clarify what you want to produce. The more clarity we have, the more focused we’ll be. Knowing why we must be productive is a good starting point. If we have an identity that states we’re a productive person, we’re more likely to be one. Once we know what we want to produce, how to do it will be a lot clearer.
- Know your rhythms. This is about identifying what we’re most effective at and when we’re at our best. If, for example, we’re most effective in the mornings, that’s when we should do our highest-value activities. If we know we have a slump mid to late afternoon, we can apply strategies to stay energised.
- Develop a system that works for you. There are many productivity systems, however not all systems work for everyone. We have to find or develop a system that allows us to be at our best. It may involve using technology or it may involve developing new rituals, habits or routines.
- Keep things simple. Highly effective people like simplicity. Keeping things simple can include working on one thing at a time or delegating tasks that aren’t our strengths. It can also include identifying one outcome to produce every day.
- Review your progress regularly. What we measure frequently will improve. A review can be as simple as asking ourselves questions at the end of each day. Questions can include, “What did I do well today?” and “What can I improve based on what happened today?” As we continue to identify ways to improve, it will help us prepare for better productivity each day.
Better productivity has to be cultivated. A good way to prepare for better productivity is to start the day or night before. The more intentional we are about what we want to produce, the better our chances of producing it.
We don’t have to be continually busy or work harder to be productive. We can adopt practices to help us work smarter and do the right things, to get the outcomes we want.
Action Step: Review what you do to prepare yourself to have productive days. Are they working for you? Add in the ideas suggested here to prepare yourself to have more productive days consistently.
Question: What are more ways to prepare for better productivity?