I like to write my blog posts at Starbucks down the road from my house. Sometimes it’s really packed and finding a table is difficult, and other times it is a little more laid back. Getting out of the house really helps me for a couple of reasons. The first is that it allows me to see other human beings (rather than just my dog), and the second is that I am actually more efficient at writing in a different setting.
Like many other entrepreneurs and salespeople I am easily distracted and can lose focus real quickly. It’s not uncommon for me to be reading an article online and half way through switch to another website that just caught my mind. It is very rare for me to have less than 8 tabs open on Google Chrome.
My wife has learned to deal with my flights of focus, but sometimes it can be a hindrance to my productivity. That’s why creating positive work habits are vital to the success of my activities. Coming to Starbucks is one of these positive work habits. I order my same $1.63 cup of drip coffee, walk to an open table, and create my work environment in the same process. Without these habits I would not be able to blog.
Here are a couple of ideas to help you create habits and work more efficiently.
- If you work from home, keep your office in a room that has no other purpose than for work. Have a different work computer from your personal computer, and set defined times to be at work.
- Again, for you stay at home folks, wake up at the same time each day and dress as you would dress if you were going to the office.
- Find out the times of day which you are most focused. There is no way that any human can work at 100% throughout the full day and in fact you will be more productive by working in shorter, more intense bursts. Perform vital activities when you are most focused.
- Eliminate or minimize distractions during your prime production times. Turn off your email, put your phone on DND, or close your office door.
- Be consistent.
Similarly, you can develop bad habits just as easily as good habits. The longer you continue the bad habit, the harder it will be to break it. You will have to go to further extremes to replace the habit with a positive activity.
Integrate a yearly plan to analyse your work habits and how you might be able to improve them. For many this time may be at the beginning of the year, but it could also be done right when you get back from summer vacation.
Once you become more self aware of your strengths and weaknesses you can build strategies to become the most effective person and ultimately create the life you are desiring.
Let me know in the comments below what you do to help improve your work productivity.
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