Did you finish up in 2022 feeling knackered and overwhelmed by your never-ending to-do list? If so, you’re not alone.
According to a study in the journal Nature, most people say they feel persistently “time-poor – like they have too many things to do and not enough time to do them”.
And this problem isn’t just frustrating – it can be exhausting and lead to poorer mental and physical health.
The good news is that you can improve your productivity by making a few small changes. This will allow you to get more done and free you up to spend more time with family, pursue a hobby or chill out on the sofa.
I’ve compiled a few tips to help you make the most of your time.
Scientists argue that jumping between tasks is more tiring and mistake-inducing than doing one thing at a time. Always focus on the most important tasks on your to-do list, and don’t get distracted by secondary jobs that can wait another day.
Allocate your time carefully
Prepare a timetable detailing how much time you’ll spend on each must-do task – and stick to it! Don’t keep checking emails and WhatsApp messages as you go; you’ll get blown off course. Instead, allocate time in the mornings and afternoons to respond to messages.
Distractions are sometimes called Time Thieves because they steal valuable minutes and hours from your day. Social media is an obvious culprit, but also be wary of lengthy meetings (when a simple email would cover it) and saying ‘yes’ to too many other people to the detriment of your own needs.
Break big projects down
If a project feels overwhelmingly large, break it down into several manageable smaller tasks and work your way through them.
If you’re struggling to focus, take a break – sitting at a keyboard or staring out a window won’t get the job done. Go for a walk or hit the gym to get your endorphins going and fire up your creativity.
Be kind to yourself
Reward yourself when you complete a task, as this will send a message to your brain that hard work reaps results. It doesn’t have to be a big gesture – a cup of tea, a tasty treat or a screen break will suffice.
What’s your best productivity hack? Let me know below.