Block Up the Biggest Drain on Your Personal Productivity

This is probably the hardest challenge that you have to deal with to guarantee your productive time. The reason why it is so difficult is because it involves a variety of different causes.

The workplace is a primary environment for social contact and it is one of the most satisfying aspects of work. Effective teamwork requires good personal relationships and the ability to get on with other people is often the primary requisite for a job. Some jobs ask for a friendly, outgoing personality. All this is fine except that it is very easy to overdo the social side of work to the detriment of your productivity. Just keep time log for a couple of days and note the amount of time you spend socializing. You may be very surprised when you find out the total time and no doubt, you will want to make some changes.

Here are a few hints that you can use to improve your personal productivity by cutting down your social time to a reasonable amount. One of the difficult things to control are the people who visit you in your workplace. If you have a door, try closing it. If you don’t have a door, position your desk so it is facing away from the traffic flow. Train yourself not to make eye contact whilst you are working.

These next three suggestions may seem a little extreme but your personal productivity is extremely valuable to you and unwittingly you may have been attracting people in such a way that they interrupt you.

  • Don’t keep extra chairs in your office.
  • Hide your personal coffeemaker with the extra cups.
  • Make sure that you don’t have a candy jar.
  • Ensure there is nowhere to sit except your chair by piling books on flat surfaces.

One of the best remedies for extinguishing socializing is to try this. Keep a folder marked “Visitors.” In the folder keep some papers with really boring jobs on them. For example, “I’ve got a couple of minutes work to do first before we can talk, so whilst you’re sitting there would you mind totaling this column of figures for me?” You will find that people will stop coming round to interrupt you and waste your time. The sorts of boring stuff that you can put in the folder could include proofreading, the comparison of two documents or anything that requires concentration and is not creative.

If your boss drops by and wants to socialize, your strategy is to show that by limiting your socializing your boss will benefit. You can do this by emphasizing the task that he or she wants you to do for them is on your desk at the moment and you are working on it.

Reasons to Buy Personal Productivity Software

Every person needs to track his activities one way or another, especially businessmen or corporate executives whose entire day is spent in meetings. In all honesty, meetings are really time wasters. These are not really productive, and most of the time, these are just nothing more than chitchats. Technology has made it possible to have gadgets that no one before ever thought would have existed, just like the personal productivity software.

This software program is nothing more than a checklist made high-tech. The purpose of having this is to set calendars and activities right. This is a great way of not being late with certain activities and meeting deadlines. In essence, it maximizes productivity in an organized way using a to-do list methodology. It aligns tasks and provides any person to strategically approach things in accomplishing tasks-whether it is office work or business enterprise activities.

In any case, a software program such as this is very much recommended for people who cannot afford a secretary or do not need a secretary. Designed for achievers, this is something that goal-oriented people will certainly want to have. In a snapshot, this allows you also to prioritize things and put things to do in specific order. Somehow, this software allows users to put a weight or bearing on how important the tasks are. After the list is updated based on the importance of each activity, the organizer will show the user what needs to be done first.

Just like any computer calendar, this can be programmed in a daily, weekly, and monthly basis. Reminders may be set so the user will never forget anything. However, one thing that sets the difference is that this software will show the user how much time is remaining before the deadline is due. It also shows the user how much time is left before the task can actually be completed.

There are many brands of this type of software, each having something more to offer. Before choosing one, make sure you know your purpose and check the features carefully before making the purchase. You may be buying something packed with lots of features that you do not actually need. What happens is you end up tinkering on your software and spend more time on it instead of getting more jobs done. Make sure that you know your purpose, too, and that these purposes are in line with your primary goals. Of course, what you need is to get things done faster to achieve your goals faster as well. Another thing that you have to greatly consider is that you are buying this gadget to boost your confidence as you trudge along the daily hustle and bustle of life.

And lastly, make sure that the personal productivity software program you will get will help you become more effective at work, not counter-effective. So many people just end up in analysis paralysis because they too much effort working out how to manage time. You cannot manage time. Period. What you can manage is your activities.

How to Double Your Personal Productivity in Just 30 Days – 1 – The Art of Prioritizing

How often have you said to yourself, “If only I could get twice as much done as I do now!” The good news is, you can… as long as you have the right method and the motivation to change. In this 3-part series, I’m going to teach you a step-by-step method that will allow you to double your personal productivity in just 30 days. Actually, you could do it in a week, but I prefer to allow for the fact that most people aren’t very consistent at applying new information!

There are 5 mistakes people make that cause them to struggle with low productivity and the feelings of frustration and inadequacy that brings, and I’m willing to bet you’re making some of them every day:

1. Wasting time on tasks you don’t need to do at all

2. Putting time and energy into Low Value Tasks (LVTs); tasks that have little or any impact on your bottom line or your ability to achieve your goals

3. Failing to distinguish LVTs from HVTs (High Value Tasks) correctly and failing to devote 80% of their time and energy to the HVTs

4. Not working on your HVTs when your physical and mental energy is highest

5. Allowing interruptions during your working time

What is an HVT?

A High Value Task is any task that contributes directly or indirectly to achieving your goal. In network marketing or any home business, this means an HVT is a revenue generating activity. Some revenue generating activities give direct and immediate results, such as making an offer to your list or following up with your leads, while others are more indirect, such as writing articles like this one or producing videos about your business. The direct ones generate revenue now and the indirect ones fill your bank account later.

Either way, your success will be directly proportional to the percentage of your working time you spend on those revenue generating activities. And, by the way, the same applies to a health goal, a relationship goal or even a spiritual goal. Since actions bring results, more of the right actions bring the results you want faster.

Consequently, your ability to identify your HVTs and to concentrate on them single-mindedly is your ticket to success. This is the first and most important element in prioritizing your tasks. You’re probably familiar with Dr. Steven Covey’s famous distinction between what seems “urgent” and what’s actually important. It’s no accident that what seems “urgent” is more often than not an LVT, while everything truly important is by definition an HVT. Success, therefore, requires the inner strength to resist the lure of the seemingly urgent.

Prioritizing Your Time and Energy:

Lots of people talk about prioritizing tasks, but few mention the need to prioritize your time and energy. What this means is that after you’ve identified your HVTs, you need to allocate your time and energy to accomplish them. And your success will depend on how consistently you match the Highest Value Tasks with those times of day when your mental and physical energy is at its peak.

For most people, this means first thing in the morning. True, some people can work productively late at night, but for most, creative tasks are best done early in the day. And there is a huge psychological payoff for this – if you can get your top 1-3 priorities off your plate by 10 or 11am, you feel absolutely wonderful! Developing this habit is one of the most important things you can do to ensure your success in business and in life precisely because it gives you a feeling of control over your life, your work and your results.

The Bottom Line:

If you want to double your personal productivity right away, you can do so very easily by following these simple steps:

1. Distinguish your HVTs from your LVTs

2. Devote an increasing percentage of your working time to your HVTs

3. Schedule work on your HVTs for times when your mental and physical energies are at their peak

4. Schedule your HVTs so that you can complete as many of them as possible by mid to late morning each day.

In part-2 of “How to Double Your Personal Productivity in 30 Days,” I’ll share the secrets of preparation – how to prepare yourself and your workspace to guarantee your working time is much more productive than you’ve been used to. See you there!

– Dr. Symeon Rodger

Personal Productivity Secrets – Part One

I felt inspired to write this article because of my own battle to become more productive. I usually work alone and seldom collaborate with others. Consequently, my productivity (or lack of it) becomes glaringly obvious.

Realizing this fact, I began to search for tools and techniques to help me improve in the areas of time management, personal productivity, and goal-setting. That was twenty years ago.

Recently, the thought occurred to me that other solo-workers will eventually come to the same conclusion I came to years ago — “If I want to increase my output, I will need to find the techniques to help me”. This is the first article in a five-part series. Following these steps will dramatically boost your results and your own personal productivity.

Before we launch into an avalanche of personal productivity and time management tips — there is one important step for you to complete. You will need to do an assessment of your current time usage. The step requires absolute honesty on your part and no one needs to see your results.

Starting Monday morning, do the following:

1. Get a digital watch, a notepad and pen
2. Record the start and stop time of every activity you do throughout the day
3. At the end of day add up and total the results for each activity
4. On Friday total up the columns

You now have a snapshot of your time usage for the week. The purpose of the exercise is to get a baseline of what you do and exactly how long it takes to do it. From the data you collect you will discover exactly where every minute goes and how efficiently you use your time.

Knowing where you spending your time will provide you with a foundation. Using the information you’ll receive in the next article in this series will help you to build upon that foundation.

Being completely honest with yourself about exactly how long you spend doing things like checking email, searching Facebook and doing low-priority busywork is up to you. No one will care if you fudge your numbers but if you’re serious about improving your performance on the job or at home, then doing this step is immensely important. The result of the assessment is the starting point you’ll build on.

Make the commitment to track your time over the next week and we will look at your results.