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Career & Money

How to Up Your Productivity Game

Practical productivity hacks for the year ahead

Maximizing one’s productivity is among the most common hurdles that every student or professional faces. When deadlines pile up, it’s easy to think that there just isn’t enough time to get everything done. But having more time isn’t the key solution—it’s knowing how to efficiently and effectively utilize the time on your hands.

Boosting your productivity can help you get more done in less time. Here are a few tips you can follow to up your productivity game.

RELATED: 5 Tips to Stay Productive When Working From Home

Check your email at the right time

Fellow workaholics, it’s easy to get swallowed up by all the emails you need to read and answer first thing in the morning, but it can get pretty overwhelming. Pick the right time to check your email and dedicate specific times for it within the day. For instance, you can allot an hour each day for email and correspondence after you’ve completed at least one critical task.

Set personal deadlines

There are moments when you have a hard time motivating yourself to start or finish a project. Studies show that procrastination results in higher levels of stress and low self-esteem. 

By setting meaningful deadlines, you can prevent yourself from procrastinating and eventually help you complete your assignments.

If it’s a big project, break it down into smaller tasks, and set deadlines for each task. This can make your project more manageable for you.

Leverage on the right technology

There’s a wide variety of productivity tools that can help you organize and prioritize your tasks. Pick the tool that you’re most comfortable using. 

Check out Asana, Trello, Jira, Active Collab, Teamwork, Basecamp and other productivity apps. Most of them even come with mobile apps, so you can stay productive even if you’re always on the go. Here’s where you can put your postpaid plan or mobile data to good use.

Prioritize your tasks

The most productive people know how to identify which projects take precedence over the other tasks. Sort through your daily or weekly tasks, and determine which ones should be prioritized. 

You can make separate lists for critical tasks, important tasks, menial tasks and miscellaneous tasks. Create a plan around these lists so that you can determine how to schedule your day efficiently.

Get enough rest and sleep

When you’re not productive, you may find yourself working or studying until the wee hours of the morning. Some people think that they’re more productive that way, but not getting enough sleep is counterproductive, as it results in mental distress, poor focus, reduced cognitive function and irritability. Chronic lack of sleep can even result in cardiovascular and neurologic illnesses.

Don’t let your performance suffer by constantly staying up late. Schedule your day properly and make sure you get enough rest.

Learn to say no

Even if you think you know it all and can do it all, don’t do it all. If your schedule is already full, say no. Chances are, there are other people on the team who can do these tasks. Maybe they can even do it better than you, as you’re already swamped.

Even if you know the ins and outs of the project, remember that you’re only one person and you can’t do it all. So don’t be afraid to get help or delegate tasks.

Take periodic breaks

Make sure to take short breaks in between tasks to keep yourself calm and relaxed. Don’t give yourself a headache by working long hours without any breaks. 

The human brain can stay focused for 45 minutes at a time, so giving yourself a break can help you stay productive. Make sure that you’re eating well and hydrating yourself to keep your energy at its peak.

RELATED: How To Work Smarter: 5 Productivity Apps To Try This Month

Productivity isn’t about just getting things done. Being productive means that you’re getting things done right and on time.

Strive to boost your productivity and improve your overall self-esteem. Completing tasks will give you a sense of accomplishment and leave you feeling fulfilled and satisfied with yourself.

Art Matthew Fetalver

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