Most of us struggle with productivity and motivation, especially during the summertime. The warm weather can tempt us to daydream about soaking up the sunshine with friends instead of working on our important tasks and projects, and we sometimes dread working because we would rather be laying on a beach somewhere, listening to the relaxing crash of the waves in front of us.
The sad truth is that we can’t always be on vacation, and even though it’s summertime, deadlines are still approaching and work still has to get done. So how can we combat these lazy dog days of summer and spend our time more wisely instead of daydreaming at our desks?
Here are five of the best time management hacks that can really boost your productivity and give you the extra motivation you need to get your work done so that you can play hard when the weekend, or vacation, comes!
1. Get a good night’s sleep
If you’re yawning at your desk and you can’t keep your eyes open, you definitely won’t get anything done! Getting enough sleep is vital to keeping your productivity high. Doctors recommend 7-9 hours each night for healthy adults, so aim for somewhere in that range. If you find yourself staying up late watching TV or playing on your phone, make a “lights off” rule for yourself starting at your bedtime and stick to it.
2. Exercise first thing in the morning
Studies show that people who work out first thing in the morning have more energy and mental clarity. So instead of waiting to get to the gym after work, try fitting in a little workout as soon as you wake up. It doesn’t have to be strenuous - a light walk or even a short yoga session will do the trick. As long as your blood is pumping and your mood is elevated, you’ll be more productive.
3. Try time blocking
Time blocking is a scheduling practice that helps you figure out which time of day you are the most productive. For a week or two, start tracking your productivity at each hour of the day from the time you wake up to the time you hit the hay. Log each activity you accomplish in each hour block. In a lot of cases, people find that they are at their peak productivity in the same 1-3 hour time block every day. Once you figure out your most productive hours, schedule your most important projects for that time of day. This should help you get hard work done better and faster.
4. Put your phone down
The worst thing you can do while working on a project is to pick up your phone and start scrolling. Our phones are such a distraction and can keep us from being the most productive we could be. While working on very important assignments, turn your phone off entirely or put it in another room. Avoiding the temptation to look at your phone can help you get work done at a much faster rate.
5. Change environments
Some people work better when they have a change of scenery. Try taking your work to a coffee shop or a park bench one day a week and see how your productivity changes. If you have the option to work remotely, consider moving your workspace to an environment where you flourish.
Have you tried any of these time-saving productivity ideas before? What tips and tricks work best for you? Saving time and improving your work ethic can make work enjoyable, and your weekends and time off will become an even sweeter reward. These time management hacks can help you accomplish the goals you’ve never been able to before - try them out and see which ones help you the best!