8 Surefire Ways to Get More Work Done Today
Raise your hand if you wish there were more hours in the day. Entrepreneurs—I’m guessing you have both hands raised.
Running a business in today’s digital world is time-consuming, as the internet never sleeps. According to Wells Fargo / Gallup Small Business Index, entrepreneurs work an average of 52 hours per week, with 57 percent working at least six days per week.
If only there were more hours in the day, right?
Well, while the days will never be longer than 24 hours, there are ways you can accomplish more in that small window of time.
Here are 8 simple ways that you can accomplish more starting today:
#1. Do not combine work with relaxation
An advantage of being a successful digital entrepreneur is you can work from home, but that doesn’t mean you should combine work with play. Watching television while trying to market your business, for example, is a bad idea. Both activities require your full attention and should be focused on individually. Multitasking only works if one of the activities is mindless, such as folding laundry while taking care of a business call.
#2. Determine your best working hours
For some people, early mornings are when they’re the most productive. Others accomplish more at night. Play around with your schedule for the week and track how much you accomplish during certain times of the day. Save your hardest work, or your work that requires the most of your attention, for the times when you are the most alert.
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#3. Start exercising
Incorporate exercise into your daily schedule to give you energy, reduce your stress levels and burn off some steam. It doesn’t matter if you choose to work out in the morning or in the evening, for 15 minutes or an hour, just make sure you’re getting your heart rate up at least once per day.
#4. Block online distractions
Checking email and social media throughout the day can add up to hours of wasted time. If you can’t control yourself, use an app or website to block social media sites during certain times of the day. Successful business owners realize the importance of being “plugged in,” but they also realize the importance of completing their necessary tasks on time.
#5. Take action on emails immediately
Quit reading emails and putting them off until later. That can add up to an entire day’s worth of time every month. You spend a few minutes reading the email, you decide to go back to it later, you forget about it, you remember it, you go back to it, you re-read and then you respond to it. Instead, respond to all emails immediately. Delete emails you no longer need and keep your inbox neat and tidy.
#6. Plan for the unexpected
People often get behind on their schedules because something unexpected comes up—they run into a friend at the coffee shop, they receive an email that takes longer than expected to respond to or they have a family emergency. Try leaving a few gaps in your schedule to allow for the unexpected. By being prepared, you’ll never fall behind and should be able to accomplish all of your tasks on schedule.
#7. Make thought-out—yet quick—decisions
A perfect example would be trying to find the best deal on a hotel. You could spend hours, days even, searching for the best prices, the best rooms and the best views. Instead, give yourself an allotted amount of time to research and then make a decision. The same rule applies to your business. Don’t dwell on decisions and overthink every little detail.
#8. Get enough sleep
In the short-term, inadequate rest can make you anxious, forgetful and put you in a bad mood, making your workday significantly less productive than if you got your eight hours of shut-eye. In the long-term, lack of sleep can lead to high blood pressure, obesity and even a heart attack. While you may need to stay up late working on occasion, try not to make a habit of it.
We all have days where we feel super productive. Think back to those days and see what separated your productive days from your unproductive ones. Your personal preferences, coupled with the strategies mentioned above, should give you the extra few hours needed each day to dedicate towards your work.