This year, I have been working towards making my workspace a place that promotes creativity and productivity. Little did I know, my environment was having a huge effect on my output. This week, I am going to share some strategies I have implemented in my life that has boosted my focus and creativity, increasing both the quality and quantity of my work. Feel free to adapt these strategies to fit your working preferences, habits, and routines.
Being busy is not a synonym for productivity.
The thought in the old paradigm was: A busy person will find a way for it to get done. Nowadays, the saying is: A busy person will find a way for it to get done… until they burn out.
The question people should be asking is “How should I manage my energy?” not “How should I manage my time?”
Having a hard time starting a project? Stuck looking at the computer screen and nothing is coming to mind? Are you considering alternative terrible fates you would rather do than continue working on your deadline? Try a few of these suggestions and you will be focused and back to working hard in no time!
Time is not money, time is life. Unlike money, we can’t get more of it by working harder, we can only learn how to better manage the time we have.
My grandfather, like most grandfathers, has about three favorite stories he manages to work into every conversation we have. In his story about working in the corporate world in the 1960s he ends it by saying this: if you don’t plan your day, someone will do it for you.
One of the first things people say to me when they walk in my apartment is, “I wish I had more time to read.” Books are strewn across the kitchen table, in stacks by my desk, floor to ceiling shelves in the living room, in between spice racks in the kitchen, on the bedroom nightstand – you get the picture, a lot of fuel if there was a fire (my dream is to have a miniature bookshelf in the bathroom but my girlfriend won’t give in).
So here’s my confession...
You know, if I just had time I would blog, or exercise, or take long walks, or be able to work 40 hours a week. Sound familiar? Time management is a challenging area for most of us and it’s something we don’t want to think about when it comes to our personal life and when engaging with friends. But in the business environment it is a must-have tool for your tool kit.
What is your weekly word count? I read the results of a study by Xerox that stated an informed worker reads 1,000,000 words per week. Let’s put that in perspective. 1,000,000 is the same as reading the book War and Peace twice! I took apart my week to see how much I read so I could prioritize my reading and find some way to better manage the time I spend reading - I hope you do the same. I did not include any pleasure reading or content to help me learn new things. I only included the work-related reading that is needed to be functional in my job and stay current.