Even the most diligent among us will find it hard to get back to the swing of things after a relaxing weekend.
As you find your momentum, it’s perfectly normal to feel bogged by the tasks lined up for you. If the idea of the coming week is dragging you down already, we thought we’d lend you a hand.
Here are our favorite productivity tips for busy professionals who aren’t ready to let go of the weekend yet:
Productivity tip #1: Make a list of your goals
With several tasks ahead of you, it can be hard to decide which one to tackle first. That’s why it’s important to prioritize and arrange your day accordingly.
Draft out a to-do list as soon as you sit on your desk. Arrange a list with tasks for the entire week, structured according to priority.
You can also put together a mind map to collect your thoughts and organize your ideas for the days ahead.
As you move along the week, do your best to stick to this plan of action. When you need to add something, just be flexible and learn how to re-arrange your goals.
You can use apps like Evernote to keep better track of your tasks and make this process a lot easier.
Productivity tip #2: Forget multitasking
Multitasking doesn’t get you anywhere near productivity. According to a study in the University of Sussex, trying to multitask can work against you.
By juggling several tasks at once, you’re actually wasting your time trying to divide your concentration accordingly. In turn, this only hurts the overall quality of your work.
You can meet both quantity and quality if you focus on tackling your to-do list one task at a time. Don’t attempt to cross out several different items at once.
Worse, don’t try to squeeze in some leisure reading time while you work on finishing your report. Just focus on what you’re doing at the moment and move on to what’s next when you’re done.
Productivity tip #3: Set up an email schedule
One way we try to justify procrastination is by doing something that’s seemingly work-related. For most professionals, that’s the constant need to check their email.
While some emails do need immediate attention, you don’t need to refresh your inbox every other hour to see if there’s anything that needs your immediate attention.
Limit your email checking habit by sticking to a strict schedule. So that you won’t miss any important messages, we suggest that you look in on your inbox 3 times a day—when you first arrive in the office; after your lunch break; and finally, before you leave for the day.
Productivity tip #4: Take meaningful breaks
You will definitely feel burned out if you never take the time to leave your desk.
There are those that think that productivity is measured by the number of hours they spend typing away at the keyboard.
However, rest and relaxation actually play an important role in making sure you’re well-equipped to finish the day’s tasks.
Don’t spend your break eating lunch at your desk or cubicle. Use what little time you have to relax doing exactly that. Aside from your lunch break, also schedule soft breaks throughout the day.
As The Atlantic senior editor, Derek Thompson, suggests, the formula for productivity is “to work for 52 consecutive minutes followed by a 17-minute break”.
Productivity tip #5: Don’t be afraid to ask for help
Finally, you can also maintain a productive output by delegating tasks and asking for help.
If you’re really working on a tight schedule or realize you’re not the best person for a particular job, it might be better to ask someone to lend you a hand.
Delegate smaller tasks to your team or staff members. If you’re not sure what step to take next, you can also call or your colleagues from other departments and ask for their input.
Another option is to outsource help from experts outside the organization. For example, tasks involving presentations might need the expert touch of professional PowerPoint designers. If you have the resources to spare, don’t hesitate to reach out and contact the pros.
Get ready to face the week by following these productivity tips. Do you have your own techniques to make sure you stay productive throughout the week? Share your thoughts on our social media channels.
“3 Tips to Stop Procrastinating on Professional Presentations.” SlideGenius, Inc. August 13, 2015. Accessed February 23, 2015.
“Brain Scans Reveal ‘gray Matter’ Differences in Media Multitaskers.” EurekAlert! Accessed February 23, 2015.
“Map Out Your Presentation With Mind Mapping.” SlideGenius, Inc. June 13, 2014. Accessed February 23, 2015.
Thomspon, Derek. “A Formula for Perfect Productivity: Work for 52 Minutes, Break for 17.” The Atlantic. September 17, 2014. Accessed on February 23, 2015.
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