Do you have a never-ending list of several things that you need to get done? Several things that if they were just completed would make your life easier or even get you headed in the right direction. But for some reason, you never seem to make sufficient progress on this list and the weight of things not done is putting tons of pressure on you or causing you to miss out on your ideal accomplishments.
Well, if this sounds like something that you are dealing with, please keep reading this article for some valuable information on how you can get a lot more done so that you can increase your ability to achieve your big goals and make yourself proud in the process.
As a success coach, I work with women who want to set and achieve their most meaningful goals. In this work, I find that there is a trait that is very important to have when it comes to achieving goals and pursuing success. It is being productive.
Being productive is important because a huge part of achieving goals is taking action. The very nature of creating goals means that you also have new things that need to get done. I believe that this is why many people don’t have goals in the first place or the success that comes from achieving them.
But that doesn’t have to be you. You do not have to avoid goals or skip on success. Being productive is a learnable skill, and I’d like to share several effective strategies for being highly productive with you.
I organize these strategies, or systems for improvement, into a model that has three categories – the three Ps: planning, process and people.
For planning, the first thing that I recommend you do is create a morning productivity routine. This is a set of tasks that you complete automatically every day when you wake up. Being productive at this time allows you to start the day off right and gets items checked off your list before too many distractions pop up. Often, you will find that the way you start something sets the tone for how the rest of it will go. This is why mornings are very important. Having a morning routine allows you to feel very productive right away and sets the pace for the rest of the day.
You’ll also want to plan the rest of your day’s tasks in advance so that you always know what you should be working on. A best practice is to have this list written down and easily accessible so that you can actually remember what needs to be done. Simple to-do lists are extremely effective, especially when the tasks are aligned with your larger goals. Another great thing about written lists is that you can physically mark items as completed. This is very satisfying and encourages more activity.
But keep in mind that overloading yourself, especially in the beginning, is not the way to be more productive over time. You may think that you will get a lot accomplished, but in reality, you can get overwhelmed and that will lead to not wanting to complete anything. Instead you should keep your to-do list focused and short. Try to prioritize your list of tasks to the top three to five items that absolutely need to get done in a day and do them. This will make you feel far more productive than if you were to try to accomplish a ton of less significant items. And having a to-do list of three to five items per day amounts to getting 21 to 35 critical tasks accomplished in a week!
Another strategy to use when planning for productivity is the powerful act of visualization. To do this you will need to spend time actually seeing yourself accomplishing the task in the future and feeling how wonderful it will be to have the task completed. This is the key to planning a successful transformation into a highly productive person. Why? Because becoming productive and completing critical tasks on a regular basis will become part of your identity and just like anything else, your brain and subconscious mind will seek consistency in what it’s told and what it makes happen.
Now let’s talk about the process side of being productive. I say that you can have all of the planning in the world, but that won’t necessarily get things done. You also need to have a process established for being productive. Now, by “process” I don’t mean that you need to have a certain magic formula for getting things done, but you do have to be able to manage your time, organize your environment and automate tasks effectively.
So, starting with time management… here you really want to create timeframes for doing the things that you really want to accomplish. Most of us work so much better when there is a time limit, but you should avoid working too fast or setting unrealistic deadlines as this may lead to unnecessary errors and too much pressure being placed on yourself. Both of these results will send you back to being unproductive again.
You also want to make sure that your physical environment enables productivity. When you think about it, it makes perfect sense that an organized and well set up space to work is going to be much more conducive to high levels of productivity than a place that is full of chaos. Distractions in the form of noise, clutter and devices should be kept to a minimum.
Another thing that should be kept to a minimum, or avoided completely, is multitasking. Now you may think that doing more than one thing at a time will make you much more productive, but studies show that performance diminishes as you divide your attention among several tasks. This is because the brain can only focus on one thing at a time. So, to increase your productivity, you really need to learn to focus on each task and complete them one at a time in an order that makes the most sense.
And the last component of the process that I want to discuss is automation. By this, I am referring to using technology whenever possible to do things so that you don’t have to put much effort into completing tasks. By adding technology and automation to your process, you can actually get more done without even thinking about it, like using autopay to take care of your bills or subscription services to make sure that you stay stocked up on supplies. The bonus with automation is that if you set it up correctly, you greatly reduce the chance for errors and the need to do things over.
Ok, now let’s examine the last “P” in this article on productivity. This “P” stands for people. Usually, when someone decides to start getting more accomplished, she thinks that she has to do it alone, but I don’t agree with that. I think that productivity can have a lot to do with the people in your life and how they influence, assist and support you and your plan.
So, one of the first things that I want you do to increase your productivity is spend more time with productive people who are also getting a lot done. Have you ever noticed that people who spend more time together develop similar traits and ways of doing things? This is because we are influenced by others, and we tend to live up to the lifestyle that is being modeled around us the most. Your ambitious friends will also be a source of information and collaboration.
This leads me to the next step of building the people part of productivity. And that is to stop trying to do everything on your own and learn to delegate as much as possible instead. Now, there are some tasks that are best done alone, but there are many times when it is possible to get more done by involving others. You will find that if you do this, more of your time can be freed up to take care of tasks that you actually like doing and are more suited to your skills.
And finally, let’s talk about making sure that you get the support you need because we all know that some tasks are so big that we need to bring in reinforcements to help us stay on track. This is normal. In situations like this, having someone who knows what you are trying to accomplish helps you get more done because you do not want to let that person down. In fact, research shows that when you publicly share your goals, you have around a 65 percent chance of success. However, having a specific accountability partner can boost that success rate to 95 percent.
So, there you have it. The three Ps of productivity… planning, process and people and the steps you need to take in order to get more done.
Being productive is a trait that is very important to have when it comes to achieving goals and pursuing success because a huge part of achieving goals is taking action.
I hope that this article has given you additional insight on how to complete more tasks using this model so that you can produce greater results and be more successful at achieving your goals.
If you have dreams that you want to accomplish, I would like to give you more information on goal setting and achieving. You’ll find my top tips and strategies in The Goal Guide. This eBook contains everything that you need to get started with setting and achieving your goals. Click HERE for your free and immediate eBook download.