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11 tips to improve productivity at work

By Courtesy
January 16, 2015 09:07 IST
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Out of excitement, we sometimes overcommit, and this is a major reason why we are not productive, says Kritika Harjai of CareerBuilder.

How to improve productivity"I want more from you!…"

"Just this? This is not enough, you could do more!”

And blah blah…." These are some of my manager's favourite words.

Sometimes she says this in an encouraging tone and sometimes in a more powerful way.

Being totally exhausted with this, I made a resolution for this New Year that I will make sure that my manager never says any of the above favourite words.

After much trial and errors, the following tricks have helped me sail through my shortcomings:

Define tasks

In the past years, I have tried a lot planning my day and abiding by it, but frankly, it never worked for several reasons.

So, what I did this time is I just defined the tasks that I want to accomplish by the end of the day, and also where I am at the beginning of the day.

Once this is done, I could easily define to-do-steps to achieve it.

Say goodbye to multitasking

I have accepted that multitasking isn't for me.

It takes approximately more time to finish the tasks separately than doing them simultaneously.

This might be true for you as well, so just give this a try for few days to identify that.

Step up towards deadlines

Make sure that everything you do would lead you to completion of the tasks.

Stop overcommitting

Out of excitement, we sometimes overcommit (at least I do this), and this is another reason why we are not productive.

Instead, make realistic expectations and delegate tasks accordingly.

Set timers

We use our cell phones for so many things, but how many of you have tried the timer in it?

Try using it guys, I was really amazed to see that it actually helps in accomplishing tasks on time.

Use ‘How’ instead of “I can’t”

You login to your system today morning and see piles of work.

What would be your reaction?

Will it be 'Oh No! I can't do this!' or 'How shall I do this?'

It's all about how you perceive work.

So, give it a try before accepting defeat. I tried, and it worked.

Facebook and Whatsapp can wait 

All your social sites can wait to give you updates.

If you manage to shut off all your distractions when you are doing the tasks; it won’t be difficult to complete them sooner. Trust me!

Define 'No Talking Time'

If your co-workers are also one reason for your distractions, then tell them clearly that you have assigned no talking time for this much period and they shouldn't bother you for anything.

Get enough sleep

With all this planning and everything, you need to relax your mind and take proper sleep.

Since the time I am working on these secret productivity tricks, I am actually taking approximately 8 hours sleep.

Work out

I have joined aerobics classes again.

It feels so good when your body is fit; you feel confident.

I am not asking you to join aerobics, but say yes to some sort of workout -- could be as simple as a morning walk.

Eat healthy

Food is also one factor that would increase your productivity.

Oily food can actually make you lazy and feel sleepy. So eat healthy and work fresh!

The Secret Tip

More importantly, be helpful and offer a helping hand to everyone who needs you.

Yes, I mean it!

Once you'll help others, you'll feel beautiful and motivated. And then your own tasks would look simpler to you. Try doing this!

Illustration: Uttam Ghosh/

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