5 Little Tips You Need To Plan A Productive Day
People often assume that the way to check whether you’ve had a productive day is to see how many of your tasks you’ve actually completed. However, it is more about whether you’ve got the important stuff done. You don’t just stumble upon having a productive day, you can’t just wake up and do whatever task comes your way.
These things need to be carefully thought out and planned. You need to have an effective productivity system set in place to make sure that you have all the things you need to do written down and then you need to figure out an effective way of how to complete those tasks.
To do that, all you need to do is plan your day. Whether you do this the night before or first thing in the morning, you’re already increasing your chances of having a productive day. It usually just takes 5 minutes to create this plan. But, if this doesn’t convince you, just check out these 7 tips that you need to plan a productive day.
- Review your To Do list the night before
Before doing the actual planning, you must read over the tasks you’ve set yourself to complete. Once you know what you need to get done, you can start to make a plan for the day that will allow you to hit the ground running. It is usually most effective to make your plan the night before but if for some reason you need to do it first thing in the morning that’s fine; it is better having a plan than no plan at all.
- Look for the most important task
If there was one task you wanted to complete on that day, which one would it be? You need to ensure that when planning your day you prioritise your tasks and always put the most important one at the top. If you only get that one task done then don’t look at your day as not being productive, doing one big task can be just as productive as completing 5 smaller ones. You don’t need to get a lot of stuff done, you just need to get the right stuff done.
- And do your most important task first
People would usually argue that you should start with a smaller task to ease you into having a productive day. But you are not equipped with having an unlimited source of energy and time. Which is why you must use them carefully and put your time and energy into something that is worth using it on. Therefore you need to start your day off with completing the most important task first because no matter what happens after that you’ve still had a productive day and whatever tasks you complete afterwards should be seen as a bonus.
- Always have your To Do lists nearby
You may plan and schedule a large chunk of your day due to set deadlines or it may be a time specific task. However, there may be times where your day doesn’t go according to plan and you may need to adjust your plan. A productive day happens when you make the best use of the time that you have available. To do this, you need to be able to check your task lists whenever you need to and make sure you pick the most appropriate task to complete.
You may find that your meeting or your lecture has been delayed by 10 minutes. Rather than wasting those 10 minutes, you could quickly check your To Do list and see which task you may be able to complete in that short amount of time. If you are someone that is always on the go it may be sensible to have your To Do list written on your phone or download an app such as Google Calendar so that you always have easy access to it.
- Picture your productive day
Allowing yourself to see your productive day can be enough to motivate you to put it into practice. When you visualise your day, you will see the most important parts of the day and those tasks will therefore be at the front of your mind. Plan it. Picture it. Do it.
Although a productive day requires planning, you cannot plan every hour of that day because things can happen which are out of your control which is why you need to have flexibility built into your schedule to prepare you for those bumps in the road. Remember, a productive day is not about getting everything done. It is about getting the most important tasks done. There is a lot going on in the world that is fighting for your attention, so make sure you pay your attention to something worth focusing on.
Mine Sherefali is a contributor for Inspiring Interns.
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, visit their website.