7 Productivity Hacks to Make The Most Of Your Day

7 Productivity Hacks to Make The Most Of Your Day

productivity hacksLifestyle

If you feel like you spin your wheels every day and barely accomplish something,  adopt some productivity hacks.

It is tough to get anything done without a fundamental focus on our priorities. Despite this, we’ve grown accustomed to counterproductive habits such as hectic multitasking and working amidst distractions. Some places of work even encourage this kind of thing.

Such a poorly devised approach to productivity takes a toll on pretty much all of us. We’re more stressed, less effective, and, yes, less productive.

However, most of us don’t have the option of being unproductive. Whether we’re at home or work, things need to be done. Not only do we get in our way in this regard, but, as we’ll soon discuss, the pace and mindset of modern society don’t make things any easier.

Such is particularly true in the workplace, where the expectation that we do more with less has become the rule rather than the exception. In addition, most of us are working longer hours in increasingly less-satisfying jobs, and we have a potential crisis on our hands.

However, regardless of how you may feel, you can improve your productivity with just a bit of effort. In other words, you can hack your productivity.

For those unfamiliar with the word hack, in this sense, its meaning is similar to a shortcut. It’s putting in just a bit of effort and getting back a lot more. In other words, you’re getting a lot for relatively little.

This article is all about productivity hacks. First, let us discuss why productivity hacks are even needed in the first place. Reason #1? Stress.

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Read the skills many employees hope for in a boss.

American Overwork: A Catalyst for Stress

While we can’t quantify our mindset’s influence on work-related stress, we can infer that it plays a significant role. But this hasn’t stopped us from working hard. Here are a few statistics:

– The average U.S. workweek of 38.6 hours is two hours higher than the OECD average.

– Nearly 86 percent of males and 67 percent of females work longer than 40 hours per week.

– Per one International Labor Organization (ILO) report, “Americans work 137 more hours per year than Japanese workers, 260 more hours per year than British workers, and 499 more hours per year than French workers.”

Meanwhile, the productivity of the average worker (calculated by “units produced relative to employee labor hours” or “a company’s net sales relative to employee labor hours”) continues to rise.

So, we find ourselves between a rock and a hard place. On the one hand, society demands that we maximally produce in the workplace; on the other, we suffer the consequences.

According to the 2019 American Psychological Association (APA) report, Stress In America, 64% of adults identify work as a “significant” source of stress. This is a higher percentage than money (60%), climate change (56%), and immigration issues (48%).

While the average wage has reached an all-time high, individual workers are nonetheless dissatisfied with and stressed out with the state of the workplace.

And what often gets lost are the genuine health repercussions of stress. Per Harvard University:

‘Abundant evidence shows that chronic stress chips away at physical health…[Stress] plays a role in diabetes, asthma, and gastrointestinal disorders.”

A new strategy is needed. Enter our productivity hacks.

7 Productivity Hacks

You must first acknowledge that you are in complete control of our efficiency and output.

Not our place of work, not other people, not the traffic, not your spouse, and not your kids. As the wise Buddha once said, all of the answers you seek are inside yourself.

So without further ado, let’s get to seven awesome productivity hacks that will help you make the most of your day!

#1 – Single-Task

Per a study published by Harvard University, American knowledge workers (i.e., white-collar employees) spend 47 percent of their day in a state of distraction.

Single-tasking is, by far, the best productivity hack out there – and it’s so super simple. All you need to do is focus the entirety of your attention on the task at hand. When potential distractions occur, reengage the job and stick with it.

That’s it.

Of course, it’s easier said than done. It’s not easy because we’ve spent nearly half of our life in a state of distraction. But, with practice, the ability to focus 100 percent of your attention on a single task will become second nature.

productivity hacks

#2 – Eliminate ALL Distractions

“Starve your distractions, feed your focus.”  ~ Daniel Goleman

Research shows that it takes, on average, 25 minutes to refocus on a task following an interruption completely. This phenomenon is called ‘attention residue,’ which causes the brain to have fewer cognitive resources available for the task at hand.

Needless to say, such a haphazard approach to work kills productivity. The only feasible solution is to cut away at distractions ruthlessly.

We do this by evaluating the environment and (honestly) asking ourselves: “What’s needed for the job at hand?” and getting rid of everything that isn’t.

Don’t need your smartphone? Put it away. Too much noise? Move somewhere quieter. A co-worker dropping by to chat? Save it for breaktime.

#3 – Schedule “Deep Work” Sessions

“To produce at your peak level, you need to work for extended periods with full concentration … [this] type of work…is deep work.”   ~Cal Newport

A deep work session is one in which you allow for no distractions, are entirely focused, and lasts for at least a couple of hours. According to Cal Newport, the author of the book ‘Deep Work,’ a single deep work session may allow one to achieve more in two hours than most people do in two days.

The idea here is to make time for complete focus on the most critical tasks. This is a crucial point. Working a long time on stuff that doesn’t generate a “return” is a massive waste of energy. So, it’s necessary to figure out the work that brings in the most value.

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