Whether you’re a freelancer or you work in an office full of colleagues, productivity levels are something we should all be aiming to keep at a consistently high level of work, unfortunately it’s usually easier said than done. If you want to be as productive as possible in your work, follow this amazing tips by Jason Chatfield and get to work!
1 – Copy & Paste
Make a habit of ensuring that on completion of a task, you adjust your calendar event to reflect the ‘actual’ time it took. For example, if you may have allowed 30 minutes and it took an hour. You may have thought it would take an hour but it took 45 minutes.
Then copy and paste those similar or identical tasks that you’ve completed before when you’re scheduling for the week ahead. To help this, choose a day of the week to always do this kind of planning. This gives you a realistic idea of how much time you actually have to get everything done, versus looking at a blank calendar.
2 – Color code your calendar
To give you a clearer idea of the kind of work you’re going to be doing in a day, it can help to color code the kind of work that needs doing. You get a clear, concise 10000x zoom out view of exactly what kind of work you’ll be expecting to get done.
3 – Control your distractions
The Focusme app can help you to block websites and social media you habitually go to when you’re procrastinating until the job at hand is completed. This is a timer-based app, and you’ll know from the calendar how long to set each one.
4 – Bundle similar jobs or ‘mindsets’
If you know you’ve got a bunch of admin tasks (emails, invoicing, Quickbooks, blog posts etc.) and you know you’ll basically use the same mindset and toolset for all of them, block those tasks together. If they won’t require the same amount of energy as, say, the really big project you have to start, leave them for later in the day when your energy is a bit lower.
If you need to move to a different desk for, say, drawing than you use for, say, writing emails, then bundle your drawing desk activities together, and bundle your emails desk activities together. I even have different color-coded calendars for the two kinds of tasks, to make it easier.
Also, be aware of your own individual habits and energy patterns. If you’re more focused and creative in the morning, schedule your creative tasks for then. If you’re more productive in the afternoon, switch to then. Obviously, deadlines sometimes rob you of the luxury of scheduling things for your optimum times, but do this when you have the opportunity to.
5 – Always have an end time
You know you only have a certain amount of time to get the job done, be it from a self-imposed or externally-imposed deadline.
You don’t sit around wondering what to do next because your calendar is telling you exactly what you should be doing and how long it should take. You don’t wonder “Should I be writing that blog post I’ve been meaning to write?” No. You put it in your calendar for Thursday. It’s scheduled. Do the thing you’re doing now.
Bonus upshot: Little to No procrastination.
This post was originally published on Dribbble.