As a business owner, your most valuable asset is your time, since it’s a limited resource. That’s why if you’re like most people, you’re always looking for ways to get more done in less time. But if you’re not careful, you could be making mistakes that actually cost you valuable time.
Are you making any of these five productivity mistakes?
Mistake 1: You think multitasking is productive
Many people are under the assumption that multitasking allows them to get more done in less time. In fact, researchers have found the opposite to be true. Every time you take your focus off the task at hand, you lose productivity. That’s why the experts say it’s much better to focus on ONE task and get it done before moving onto the next task.
Mistake 2: You’re easily distracted
It’s easy to think that you’ll just quickly check Facebook before you begin working for the day, or that you’ll look at a few YouTube videos. Next thing you know, hours have gone by, you’ve been totally distracted, and you’ve gotten next to nothing done.
Don’t make this mistake. If you have a tendency to get distracted, then you’ll want to take steps to prevent it. For example, if checking Facebook is your downfall, then put your laptop into “airplane mode” so that you can’t mindlessly surf the internet when you’re supposed to be writing. Or if you need to use the internet for research, then install an app that blocks social media or other tempting sites.
Mistake 3: You’re not planning well
There are two ways your planning may hinder your productivity:
Failing to plan. If you don’t plan your days, then you’re going to find yourself going whichever way the wind blows – and that’s highly unproductive. So be sure you have a to-do list in front of you at the beginning of each day.
Planning too much. If you try to squeeze something into every minute, you’re going to end up stressed out and overwhelmed. That too isn’t very productive.
Mistake 4: You don’t make use of your peak productive hours
Most people have about two or three hours of the day that are their prime hours. This is the time of the day when you’re the most focused, energetic and creative. Problem is, most people fritter away this focused time by doing little tasks like answering emails.
This time of the day is different for everyone. It’s up to you to determine your peak productivity hours, and then schedule your most important and/or most difficult tasks during this time.
Mistake 5: You do the easy tasks first
This is me! I like crossing things off my to-do list, so I have a tendency to do all the little stuff first so that my list has lots of items crossed off. Then at the end of the day, I haven’t done any work on my big project.
This is not the way to get stuff done.
If you want to get more done in a day, then get your most difficult tasks done first. These tend to require the most concentration, and so you may be “shot” after you finish them. And that’s okay, if you’ve scheduled the rest of the day with some of your easier tasks.
Do any of these sound familiar to you? If so, by taking steps to change and correct your productivity mistakes, you’ll be able to get more done with less stress.
So, how do you deal with productivity mistakes? Share in the comments below…