8 Ways To Feel Productive – All The Time!
We’ve all been there. You’re on a roll, working or studying, when…CRASH! You hit that brick wall.
Sometimes, your brain has just taken in too much information. Or procrastination strikes. Or nothing coming out of your head sounds quite right.
Here are some tips to overcome those pesky unproductive moments.
Take a walk
According to a walking study done by the University of Birmingham, those who took a 30-minute walk during their workday felt “more enthusiastic, less tense, and generally more relaxed and able to cope than on afternoons when they hadn’t walked.” It also increases your ability to think creatively, according to Stanford University.
You can make your walk even more productive with apps such as Charity Miles. For every mile walked, Charity Miles will donate .25¢ to a charity of your choice.
Listen to a podcast
There’s a podcast for everything these days. If you’ve thought about a topic for a podcast chances are someone’s already one step ahead of you. Here are a few that may help you get back to work:
Kevin Kruse is the founder of several multi-million dollar companies, a motivational and key-note speaker, and a New York Times best-selling author about the business world.
He now has a podcast about everything on success in business. With episodes such as how to survive in an office environment to how to get your work done and inspire others working with you to do the same. (His most current podcast is “The Cure for Procrastination”.)
Tim Ferriss interviews some of the world’s most successful people in a plethora of different fields. He chats with them about what makes them tick and what their most successful habits are in order to get the job done. He and his guests offer advice on how you can apply these practices to your own life.
Merlin Mann and Dan Benjamin host this podcast. They talk about productivity, creativity and struggles in the office along with best work practices.
Take a minute and tidy up
Marie Kondo has taken the world by storm with her book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. And there’s no reason why her theory can’t apply to you, too.
Take a look around your desk. See anything that you don’t need this minute? Put it away. Dirty dish? Take it out and clean it.
Getting things off your desk is likely to get them out of your head. You’ll stop subconsciously worrying about them and still be productive with tidying up. Plus, it’ll give your brain a break from whatever you’re working on.
Make a To-Do List
Make a list of things that you still have to do and things that you have already accomplished. Doing this will break down your process and keep it manageable while reminding yourself of what you’ve already completed.
Try to make sure that your list is full of singular things that are very likely to be finished but still part of an overall project – as David Allen suggests in his famous productivity self-help book, Getting Things Done.
For example, instead of writing in “discuss project with Steve and make sure to have completed X, Y, Z by Friday”, write “email Steve about project and schedule time to meet”.
- Chat with a friend about your work
Talking to a friend about your work will instantly hold you accountable. It will also make you more motivated to get things done within a specific time frame. Plus, if you’re stuck on something talking, it out may make things clearer for you.
Just make sure you pick a friend who will motivate you and not one who will persuade you to do something else instead!
- Play an educational game on your phone
Your phone doesn’t just have to be a connection to your social media but can be a huge learning tool.
There are thousands of learning games available on iPhone and Android that make for great breaks from work. Here are a few to get you started:
Duolingo is one of the world’s most popular language learning apps. The best part of all? It’s completely free.
It doesn’t feel so much like a language learning app and more like a fun game. You won’t feel like you’re doing homework when playing.
Elevate is a personalized brain-training game that helps to improve focus, speaking skills and processing speed. It’s also completely free.
Unstuck is an app that connects you with a community of people who are all trying to get “unstuck” in their work. Learn from their tips and help yourself get motivated. Once again, it’s completely free.
Resist the call of Netflix
Give yourself one more chance and try a TED Talk instead. TED has multiple talks about not only productivity, but creativity, how to work better and smarter. There are even sections on how to find the perfect job (or the perfect employee).
Finally, allocate yourself assigned break times
Your mind will need to process everything that it has internalised. The only time it has to do this is when you’re taking a break or when you’re sleeping.
Without breaks, information will start to go in through one ear and out the other. So do yourself a favor and give yourself a break every once in a while. A great app to help you with this is FlatTomato.
So there you have it: seven ways to stop shirking and get working!
Inspiring Interns is a graduate recruitment agency which specialises in sourcing candidates for internships and giving out graduate careers advice. To hire graduates or browse graduate jobs London, visit their website.