FROM THE SUCCESS PEOPLETM
The Twelve Craziest Productivity Hacks You Didn’t Know You Needed
We’ve said before how important it is to make every second count when running a small business, from Bonnyville Accountants like ourselves to one of our diverse set of clients. Once you have the big picture taken care of you’re faced with the nitty-gritty of actually getting your work done, hour by hour, minute by minute, second by second.
There’s no secret formula for becoming a productivity machine with an empty inbox and answering machine and every task cleared away by lunch break—you have to find what works for you, so we’d like to present an a la carte approach to productivity: here are 12 productivity hacks from your local Bonnyville Accountants that you can pick and choose from to increase your output.
- Focus on What’s Important
Even when you’re in the middle of an important project with deadlines looming it’s still completely possible for a little news break to turn into a hour-long deep-drive into Wikipedia. Using apps like SelfControl or StayFocusd allows you to take only a set amount of time (or no time at all) to browse the news or check Facebook.
- Doodle While You Work
If you don’t have to use your hands—if you’re checking voicemail or in a meeting—then doodle. It has been shown to decrease stress and increase concentration and creative thinking. Even we—your local Bonnyville Accountant—do it.
- Lemon Scent
It sounds odd, but scent can be a powerful factor in motivation and concentration. The smell of lemons makes employees 54% less likely to make mistakes.
- Schedule Time For You
Most people schedule tasks and leave the rest of the as ‘free’ time in which anyone can come along and drop new tasks on their desk. Scheduling non-negotiable ‘you’ time will allow you to focus on tasks uninterrupted.
- Exercise Daily
Regular exercise—the kind that gets you covered in sweat and breathing heavily—seriously increases your ability to concentrate and your overall happiness.
- Remember to Breathe
Humans run on oxygen, and not getting enough leads to hypoxia and hypercapnia. Open a window or turn on a fan to increase the oxygen flow, and try to have plants around to process carbon dioxide.
- Letting Go of Stress
Stress hormones like cortisol were built for keeping us safe from sabre-tooth tigers on some prehistoric savannah, not filling in a spreadsheet. Letting go of stress, whether it’s through forgiving the people you’re arguing with or just forgetting about your worries, releases oxytocin, refocussing you on what’s right in front of you.
- Get Up Early
Read the biographies of successful people and you’ll invariably find that they get up insanely early- Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook, wakes up at 3.45am every morning. Getting up before everybody else gives you hours of extra time to get things done.
Another habit of highly successful people: the rich tend to be big readers- Bill Gates can read three books a day. Reading isn’t just a great way to gain and retain knowledge, it also builds focus.
- Control Background Noise
Maybe you’re lucky enough to work in a perfectly silent office, but if you find yourself interrupted by background noise you can buy a white noise generator or, if you’re working on a computer, you can use sites like this one to play customisable white noise to drown out the background.
- Make Sure Meetings Are Worth Your Time
Most meetings could be emails, right? Before you take a meeting, make sure that you have the agenda clearly laid out and an end time set- and don’t be afraid to say no.
- Chew Gum
Chewing gum is tied to lower levels of workplace stress and increased focus, so keep a pack with you for when you feel your focus slipping.
Did you leave anything out? Are you looking for some Bonnyville Accountants? Check us out and then tell us your own productivity hacks in the comments or on our Facebook page.
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