There is only so much time in one day, and it never seems to be enough! But there are some main reasons why your productivity could be suffering. The key will be to learn how to recognize when you are being inefficient and know how to fix it.
Your body has to been running well in order for you to get things done. Even if your spirit is willing, the flesh can be weak.
- Not getting enough sleep
- Researchers agree most people need 7-8 solid hours
- Not getting enough exercise
- Even JFK said “physical fitness is not only one of the most important keys to a healthy body, it is the basis of dynamic and creative intellectual activity.”
- Getting too much exercise – burning yourself out
- Over-training can have the opposite effect, make sure to give recovery time
- Not eating a healthy diet
- Avoid junk foods and trans-fats for a healthier mind and body
- Not getting enough time to yourself to recharge
- Taking small breaks throughout the day improves performance
- Being sick
- Prevention is key
On the other hand, it is just as important to be mentally healthy. Your mind needs to feel positive emotions and be free of bad stress and concerns.
- What you’re doing isn’t motivating you
- It’s important to be happy, excited, and passionate about what you do
- Personal relationships aren’t harmonious
- Appreciating your loved ones is one way to remove frictions and frustrations
- Stressing about your financial situation
- Manage your budget
- Having too much on your plate
- Be realistic about how much time you have in a day (10-12 working hours)
- Relying on willpower
- When your motivation is low, habits are what get you through your list
Procrastination is probably the most popular obstacle to productivity. Sometimes it’s too easy to make an excuse to put something off another day.
- It’s so nice outside
- Have control over your schedule to rearrange your time to take advantage of beautiful days.
- There’s no urgency/accountability
- Set your own deadlines
- Fear of failure/success
- Look at each task as an opportunity to learn something
- Indecision– don’t succumb to perfection paralysis
- Just start task and modify as you go
You need to know what you want, and how you will get there. Doing the wrong things is very inefficient.
- You haven’t defined your goals– SMARTly
- Specific, measureable, attainable, realistic, and time bound goals always!
- Poor strategy/planning
- Stay flexible to achieve a stress-reduced balance in your life
- Handling things more than once
- Do it, dump it, or delegate it!
- Being disorganized can cost you valuable time (~5 hours per week)
- Attention to one task at a time is more productive
Avoiding all of these productivity killers will allow you to make the most of each day. You can read about more productivity killers here.