Productivity is the not so simple step of not wanting to do something and doing it anyway. It also would describe making a routine for yourself and deciding to stick to it and knowing the best way to manage your own time. All of that is hard, especially when you put it all together.
However, the end result of productivity is orderliness. Something that most people know is a good thing by simply listening to their parents ask them to clean up their room.
The whole “productivity” though is hard. How to find the best way to keep yourself accountable is hard. It’s not exactly something people are good at.
But here are some tips and tricks (as well as a couple tools) to help you.
1. Make a list
Productivity is hard, but what’s even harder is trying to be productive and not knowing what you have to get done. Making a list of the things and ideas you need to spend time on that day makes the difference. Making a list, however, can sound hard, so here is something I’ve found out. Don’t try to get everything done in one day, as cliche or teacherish that may sound, it’s so true. If you have an assignment or maybe you need to post something on your own blog, making a list of the most important things will help. So, at the top of your list write the things that will make you feel most accomplished.
Write down, for example, complete assignment and finish practicing my music.
Those can be the top things. Then below those write the other things that maybe are less important but you still really want to accomplish. As you finish the things at the top, there can be a cycle where the items closer to the bottom become more important.
2. Mention your goals.
There is no better way to be productive than to have an “accountability partner” who is constantly bothering you about it. Sure it can get annoying and sometimes overly annoying but when something is helpful, it’s worth it sometimes.
Ask someone to help you, and tell them your plans and events as well as some dates that you need them to be done by. That way they can remind you until you have it done. Even a quick text or call and you’re on your way, because who wouldn’t want to get a reminder from someone and be able to say “oh… it’s already done.”
3. Get things done (or scheduled) way before it happens.
Ok for all you over-achievers out there, please don’t be shocked. Most of us don’t have things done three weeks in advance, in fact, most of us might not even have it done three days in advance.
But for people like me who get things done when they’re due, here’s something that’s hard but actually does helps. Use your list to know what you have to get done () and when you have a free minute, instead of texting or whatevering try to finish something that you really want to get done and something that doesn’t seem like such a chore to you and then you can actually get ahead of your list. And then, you can just sit back and relax when you were supposed to be doing it.
4. Think about the end.
So everyone always tells you to think about when it’s done. Or at least I’ve probably heard that hundreds of times. “Work out and you’ll be fit and strong” “Do your homework and you’ll get a good job” “Eat as many donuts as you want and you’ll get fat.”
But seriously, have you ever thought about the future, not the future but only a few hours from when you do it. So you know that once you get on your phone you’re never going to get off but think about it, if you do your jobs first then you have more time doing what you like. Then you get both done and maybe it’ll feel even better once you finally get to have fun.
Apps that help too.
Headspace is an app that is for stress relief and motivation.
Every day you can do a routine that only takes a few minutes. You sit down, get comfortable and just listen to someone lead you through breathing and thinking. I find that doing that, even if I don’t use the app and only use the reminder helps me feel prepared and ready and doing it before a workout is even better.
Ok so everyone’s heard of Google Calendar and millions of people use it. But that doesn’t mean that it’s not awesome and doesn’t help me.
I don’t use it for very wide things, for example going on a trip, instead, I use it to remind myself to pack. I use it to remind me to practice music for an hour every day and then to add on music theory. Or I use it to remind myself every day that I have to write a blog post and what I’m writing about that specific day.
Of course, this one takes a lot more time. Writing in everything you’re doing and details can get boring and sometimes you don’t want to but honestly, it helps me so much.