7 Areas to Improve Your Productivity in the New Year [2019]

I did set out a challenge to myself as I wanted to be more productive with my time and after realisation plus reading blog articles from multiple sources, this is my list of areas I wanted and am still working on to maximise the time.

Everybody has the same time length as I and you go throughout the day, we should not find any excuses based on somebody else’s experiences, in other hand, at the same time, I wanted to share here with you as I find it quite useful.

Technology

I don’t read emails first thing in the morning, I prefer to look after my own things first rather than somebody else’s priorities.

I limit the number of replies, I don’t reply to everything, it is the important and worth reply I do, otherwise, I don’t.

If I don’t understand what an email asks, I don’t reply.

I stopped listening to the news in the morning, and for the rest of the day. I find that there’s nothing so important to allow my energy to drain with the news, plus what I’m putting in is not always what I agree and want in my life. So No, I do not read or listen to the news anymore.

I don’t normally answer the phone straight away unless is an emergency, and that tends to be rare. I listen to the voice message and call back if is interesting enough to return the call.

I DO use keyboard shortcuts and I even set some of them to accommodate a particular need or program, especially for repetitive tasks. Come on, who don’t use shortcuts, they are so much easier and faster. It may be harder to remember them at the beginning but more you practice more it will become second nature.

Clothes

I tend to keep it simple and standard. I got a set of design and wear for a particular occasion, and tend to use the same and similar colours (my favourite is blue).

I’m in process of minimalism and want only to have and carry what I really need. Most of us don’t use 80% of our stuff and clothes are included in that.

I want to wake up and don’t have to spend my process thinking and decision making energy for the day in deciding what clothes to wear.

I tend to get good quality, not meaning branded highly priced fashion clothes, but good quality fabrics that will last for a while.

I dispose of the ones I don’t use anymore. That’s simple.

Hacks

I like that word as it implies that we can bend our own reality. 🙂

Visualisation is highly suggested for anything you wanted to do. It is no longer a secret anymore and all the successful people do, ranging from sports athletes to celebrities, entrepreneurs, inventors and anyone who has anything at all in life, maybe you do unconsciously, I mean, involuntary, but trust me when I say, it is much more enjoyable when you know what you want from the thinking process up to when it materialises, the feeling is most rewarding.

I do start before I’m ready and lear on along the way, the last thing I want is to end up in the learning loop. Lear a little, do a little, make a mistake, review, repeat many times over until you are done.

I assume I’m right when I’m not sure as I feel much more productive that way. If an error occurs, I adjust and carry on. I don’t want to get stuck in decision conflicts.

When I get a mental blockage, I draw, make a doodle, progress with a mind map then process mapping as I find it easier to release any blockages that my mind tends to set the traps.

When I can’t write I record myself then later on the transcript it. The main thing is not to lose the momentum.

I like to give and receive feedback, whether is a bad or a good one, as long as it is constructive I think everybody deserves the opportunity to improve as life is a constant and not a definitive end.

Body

I have natural anxiety for doing things, I can’t stand still for too long. I have to do something. I personally like to walk, can be anywhere really, but I prefer in the countryside where I can see some trees and mountains, my favourite spots are those but I could anywhere as well, as long as I’m walking, I’m happy. When I’m at clients, there one thing I do in lunchtimes and is walk and explore the region, if you want to team up with me, discuss anything outside the office, you better like walk.

Most of the time I sleep well, I force myself to sleep not too late as I like to wake up early, I do mean early as 5 am as I find it much more productive around this time than later in the afternoon for example.

When my energy is low and feels drained, I like to close my eyes for a moment or even get a quick 5-10 minutes nap. I feel that this give me a bust for the rest of the day.

Schedule

I do believe that we need to keep ourselves happy most of the time as this will motivate me to do more and more until I get all the things that I need to get done. I focus on the things that I have to do, being easy or harder first it depends, I focus on the satisfaction that it will give me once is complete, then move to the next, and the next after.

Have you heard one thing only? Yes, I’ve learned that focus on one thing is much better than having a list of priorities if there’s such a thing as a priority in the plural. One thing a day will get you much closer of your goal than waiting for the right moment to do a bulk load of things, it will frustrate you, guaranteed.

I like to have a daily routine, at least for the main things, like wake up early, have a glass of water, sometimes with apple cider, a cup of black filtered coffee (no sugar), read my life goal list for a few minutes, think about what I’m going to do for the day and being grateful for what I have right now. Skip breakfast, I know some may not agree with that but since I have been skipping breakfast, for over a year now, I have been feeling much better throughout the day. Walk in my lunch time for at least 30 minutes, sometimes 1 hour. Have a light lunch, have a not so heavy dinner, play with the kids, have a nice conversation with my other half, watch something interesting like a documentary or something factual, I try to limit fictional to a minimum. I’m trying to limit my alcohol intake (Fridays and Saturdays), ideally stop altogether, let’s see what’s brings the new year.

What about the meetings? Are they necessary? Only the important ones and I try not to elongate them with nonsense talking, I prefer to spend the time on doing than talking.

I prefer to get things done than get them perfect as I find that it takes a long time to make it perfect and usually it goes over the deadlines.

Food

Getting into an eating routine is not easy but you should try since I have started doing that I find it better and don’t cross with my productivity.

Healthy food depends on point of view, I’m in transition to eat plant-based food over dead animal food or derivates, I want to give it a go as the trials I have been given in the past few months, I’ve noticed a difference and I think, personally, there’s something good in doing that.

Don’t go physically shopping. Come on, online shopping is pretty good and pretty fast these days. In the UK, most of the biggest groceries retailers are delivering with a reasonable price and good delivery services, you don’t need to spend hours shopping when you can still being productive while it gets delivered to your door, if you can’t wait, there’s Amazon Prime 2 hours delivery which I think is pretty awesome, if you ever that desperate.

When I’m working away, in a client, and I find a good restaurant and I find going there regularly, I tend to ask for a discounted price or loyalty program discount. You can do that for your coffee too. Why not?

Mind

Since I’ve heard of the 80/20 rule, which means, 20% of work produces 80% of the result, I have been working on it and it is applicable in almost anything in life, like magic, except that it is a natural law, well, like the law as it does work. Try it.

Just focus on the important bits and suppress the urgent matter.

I like to decide the outcome even before it starts.

Ideas come and go, and the secret is in the execution of the idea, be prepared, get prepared, take notes, I walk with a small notebook, which I take notes as ideas flow in my mind and later work on something that I have seen or thought about the other day. I find that more I do it, more ideas I have.

Don’t spend time with trivial decisions like what to wear for the day. Have a set of clothes and colours that you don’t have to decide, save the energy for bigger decision points.

I’ve learned to ignore and not to respond or react to everything. You don’t have to say or respond, say you will come back to that, and do it needs to, and forget or ignore if it doesn’t worth it.

I tend to draft first, then return back and adjust as I find that much more useful than a blank page or going into too many details at the beginning and missing out the end due to too much time spent trying to make it perfect.

I’ve learned to treat time as money and it works!

Sending
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Rogerio da Silva

Test Analyst (ISTQB-ISEB Certified Tester) | Test Lead | Business Test Analyst | Entrepreneur | Investor Share, Stocks, Forex and Cryptocurrency | Social Media Marketing | Social Media Management | Website Consulting & Revision | Email Consulting (Funnel Setup) Rogerio da Silva is a Consultant as a day job and big fan of personal development and entrepreneurship. Feel free to follow him on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook Page, Tumblr, Google+ to talk about ideas, investments, business opportunities in UK and Brazil.

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