When your day is full of responsibilities, running behind schedule may be hard to avoid explains Paul Haarman. When you feel like you are drowning in work and never get everything done on time, all you can think about is how much more productive you could be if only there were a little bit more hours within a day. But what if we told you that it is possible to be productive every single day, accomplish more and have a perfectly balanced life? Well, it is.
Here are some tips on how to get more done in less time and achieve maximum productivity:
1) Organize your responsibilities
First thing first – you need to take a good look at the things you do daily and prioritize them. Make a list of all the activities that you consider being important for you – work, family life, hobbies, friendships etc., as well as those that help you relax – watching TV or reading a book. It is also recommended that you make separate lists for personal, professional and household projects as they may require different strategies of managing your time. After this task is completed successfully it will be much easier to focus on the most important ones and ignore those that don’t bring you joy or satisfaction.
2) Learn to say “No”
If you find yourself in a situation when somebody asks something from you, but you know for sure that it is not what you want to do at this time, simply refuse politely. Saying no may be hard sometimes, especially if people are asking for your help every single day. It’s okay. You can suggest making a schedule for this kind of requests and agree upon certain days when one activity will take precedence over the other. For instance, Tuesdays may be dedicate to helping your friend with his homework while Fridays could be reserv for working on a project together with a colleague from work. This way, deadlines will still be met and you will have enough time to fully enjoy your free Saturdays says Paul Haarman.
3) Learn to delegate
Another great way of saving up some time is delegating tasks that should be by somebody else. If you are a student, it may be hard for you to split responsibilities with roommates or find suitable candidates for sharing home chores, but if you live with the whole family – try asking your parents or brothers and sisters for help. It might sound absurd at first, but sometimes older people can provide useful suggestions on how things should be organize in order to save time and energy. And don’t forget about hiring housekeepers once in a while as they may greatly improve hygiene conditions within your household as well as help you survive those never-ending piles of dirty laundry.
4) Practice time management on weekends
How often do you waste your weekends sleeping all day long or just staying at home with nothing to do? It’s time to stop that. Try planning your free days by yourself and it may feel like they are shorter than usual, but at least you will be absolutely sure about what you have done during this period of time. If it is winter, go for a run in the nearest park. If spring is around the corner – organize a picnic for your family or friends, plant some flowers or perform some DIY works in your garden (there are plenty of videos on YouTube showing how to make beautiful pottery planters). And if summer has arrived – take out your paintbrushes and give your bedroom a fresh, new look!
5) Set some time boundaries
It is important to let other people know when you are absolutely unavailable for a certain activity. For instance, you may turn off all your devices during the final exam day in order not to be distract by calls or texts from friends or colleagues. Or perhaps it would make sense for you to shut down Facebook every Sunday evening so that you get enough sleep before starting a new week on Monday morning? Those “digital breaks” will allow you to actually relax and recharge your batteries before going back to work or school explains Paul Haarman.
Our life is full of different tasks and activities that must be complete in order to thrive in this world. However, there should always be a place for entertainment and relaxation as otherwise, we risk losing hope and drive to keep moving forward. So the next time you do not know how to spend your evening, make a list of things you like doing most of all. And if you don’t have enough time to include them all into your daily plans – try restricting yourself only to the most important ones.