Being productive requires an open and coachable mindset and a resolve to TAKE ACTION when opportunity arises.
Here are some secrets I learned that helped me become more productive and shape my career.
1. The 6
People often waste time in the morning when they come to the office, not quite sure exactly what to do first. Take about fifteen minutes the night before to list the six most important tasks you need to accomplish the next day. Then take another few minutes to prioritize that list. When you come to work the next morning, do everything to complete the first item on the list, and move on to the next one. The items you don’t complete become the first tasks for the next day.
2. The 10
Like “The 6”, “The 10” helps you refine your tasks to be more efficient.
Write down ten ways you can take what you do, and do it better. Think outside the box. If you come out with only one idea, then that’s one amazing idea you have towards increasing productivity in your life. Keep a log of all your best ideas and start putting them into ACTION.
3. Getting up early
The old adage “early to bed, early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise” probably doesn’t sound as appealing as sleeping in on a Saturday morning, but try it. There’s hidden truth to the power of rising early and its strong correlation to success.
You won’t become wealthy overnight, but rising early fosters an attitude and atmosphere of pride, success, and accomplishment. You’ll truly feel better when you actually get up early and start accomplishing things.
4. Time equals money
To be successful, you have to start with the right mentality. You will never find successful people “wasting” time. By wasting I mean not taking advantage of an opportunity to be productive. Successful people realize that time is an asset itself, and should be invested in activities that help them grow. Ask yourself “how can I achieve the goals I’ve laid before me?”
5. Mobile University
Mobile or Car University can be described as taking advantage of your spare time to better yourself.
Spend at least thirty minutes a day reading. Steven Covey, the author of 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, refers to reading as “sharpening the saw”. So don’t leave your saw to rust and lose its edge. Keep it sharp.
If you have long commutes, there are droves of audio options just for you. The average American spends about 100 minutes per day commuting. Instead of the radio, try listening to audiobooks and podcasts. Put that time in bumper-to-bumper traffic to use and learn something new. You could be on your way to achieving the equivalent of a master’s degree.
But choose your books carefully. In your pursuit to be informed and productive, your choice should be intentional and the content always informative. Read about your industry or things that interest you. Read about the people who inspire you or whom you want to emulate.
The only way to see big results is through small change, so take small steps. Begin small by taking advantage of your commute time.
There are many paths and secrets to success that are not written in stone, but these are simply some important lessons that many successful men and women have learned along the way. Life never gets less busy. Responsibilities grow and compete for your limited time. If you can find ways to keep yourself present and accountable, they will lead you to success.