- Daily Zen
We all want to be more productive and better organized, don’t we? What we fail to grasp is that most of the time being more productive means striking a better work-life balance. A big part of leading a productive life, and not just listing your To-Dos and goals, is consistently prioritizing that support the expansion of your life. Until you design a world-class routine that sets you up for maximum productivity, you’ll only be able to go so far.
What do CEOs do all day? The question has been studied extensively, of course, including in Industry Leaders Magazine. On an average, about two-third of a CEOs’ day is spent with at least one other person, which mostly involves meetings. Most of those meetings are planned ahead of time.
Now, most people bemoan the number of meetings on their calendars. But what people are tired of is ‘unproductive meetings.’ The modern-day entrepreneurs long for valuable discussions that move the business forward. You’ll greatly improve your discussion by shortening your meetings between twenty to thirty minutes.
According to Dr. Paul King at Texas Christian University, an acclaimed scholar in the field of communication studies for thirty years –
The more information we acquire, the heavier that knowledge becomes until our minds are unable to retain information and do nothing. The ideal time to keep someone’s attention before they zone out is 10 to 20 minutes. This is one reason why Ted Talks are so short.
One of the best corporate presentation that world has ever seen was the launch of the iPhone in 2007. The entire product launch lasted nearly 90 minutes, but Steve Jobs didn’t give a 90-minute presentation. One of the greatest public communicators, Jobs spoke for 15 minutes before introducing a soft break.
It’s estimated we waste approximately 60 to 90 minutes per day at work purely because of distractions. Distractions that derail out productivity can be sorted into one of the four categories –
There are distractions which we can’t control – and they’re both annoying and sometimes, fun. The key to dealing with such distractions is to prevent them from happening. It is up to you, how to respond to such distractions, that will help you get back on track after fun/annoying distractions. This list of distractions contains – an unexpected office visitor, loud colleagues, long meetings.
We often see such distractions as more fun compared to what we should be doing. This list of distractions is way longer than it should be – notifications, news websites, social media, and the Internet.
Now, not all distractions at the workplace are within your control, but many are. We must proactively deal with distractions we have control over. As for the distractions we can’t control, we must change how we respond to those.
Every morning, write down three things you need to accomplish during the day. How to be good at prioritization? 1.) Be clear – make the list easy to understand; and 2.) Make it actionable. Start your day with the hardest task. When we start our day with the most important task, we are able to transition to other tasks with a clearer mind. If you begin with smaller tasks, the big task will loom over you during the day causing you to procrastinate even further.
You can even use the ‘Pomodoro Technique’ of time management to accomplish all the great things you want to, all at the same time. This technique is all about breaking down your tasks into 25-minute slots. Between each ‘slot’ give yourself a 10-minute break. After every 4 slots, give yourself a 15-30 minute break.
These three productivity hacks will help you live an extraordinary life. If you want to go world class in everything you do, learn to consistently make choices that support maximum productivity and help you become more productive.