Oh, to be more productive. It’s what we all want, right?
They Prioritize Prioritization
Productive people know that no matter how exciting or non-exciting a task is, it’s irrelevant: The reality of a task’s level of importance—not their preference for doing it—is what determines their workflow. The inherent nature of prioritization is that to-do lists are created and ordered based on how soon something actually needs to get done, which is most often determined by external deadlines beyond our control (particularly in the work world).
They Don’t Just Set Goals, They Assign Timelines
It’s great to set goals for yourself, but they need to be broken down and assigned timelines for the various action items involved (like steps in a recipe) or the goal will seem insurmountable from the start, and won’t have any urgency attached to it.
They Set Limits
Productive people look at the clock and tell themselves, “This needs to be done by 6 p.m.,” and then work their fastest and hardest to get it done, whether or not it’s the most perfect piece of work they’ve ever put forth.
They Control Technology, Not the Other Way Around
Productive people understand that it’s counterproductive to be a slave to technology. Not only will there always be something new and exciting to look at, social media can be a time-suck to even those with the most willpower.
They Take Breaks Strategically
Many productive people force themselves to take a break, even for just three to five minutes, every 90 minutes or so. It prevents them from getting too caught up in the weeds of one thing, and provides a quick focus shift—a brain- and body-healthy breather.
They Don’t Multitask
Even with competing priorities, highly productive people focus on doing one thing at a time really well, not switching back and forth between four things at once.
They Make Sleep a TOP Priority
Not getting enough sleep is a guaranteed saboteur of productivity. The day after sleeping less than seven hours a night (let alone consecutive nights with less than seven hours of slumber), you’re slower, less focused, and less motivated.
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