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16 Quick Tips To Enhance Your Mindset, Focus And Productivity

Quick Tips To Enhance Your Mindset, Focus And Productivity

* Note: this post originally appeared in the form of a newsletter to my subscribers over at Blogging Wizard. Want to sign up? Click here to get started.

Have you ever felt like you just don’t have enough time to get all of your work done?

You’re not the only one. It’s something we all struggle with at one time or another.

So what can you do to make the most of the time you have available?

Below, you’ll find a collection of quick tips that will enhance your mindset, focus and productivity.

Let’s get started:

#1 – Develop your own daily routine

How you start each day will largely determine how productive you are. If you feel like your body is resisting getting into work mode, don’t worry, that’s natural.

Try starting each day with meditation, followed by exercise and you’ll notice your productivity improve.

You could also include a few minutes to organize your workspace and time to go through the tasks you’ve got lined up for the day.

#2 – Know whether you’re a ‘maker’ or ‘manager’

There is no single schedule that will suit everyone. Most people fall into one of two camps – makers or managers.

Makers work best when they have half/full day blocks of time to work on a project.

Managers can easily switch up tasks every 30 minutes or so without it negatively impacting their productivity. This post by Paul Graham explains the concept in more depth.

#3 – Use the ‘time boxing’ strategy

When you group similar tasks together, you can work through them with less friction. The idea is that you allocate blocks of time and work on similar tasks in each time block.

For example, if you have several blog posts planned for the week ahead, you could do the research parts for each one in the same time block.

#4 – Identify your “one big thing”

What’s the main thing you want to get done in the next week?

Sure, there are always a lot of smaller tasks, but when you focus in on very specific objectives, you’ll be able to work quicker.

#5 – Plan your week out in advance

Every Sunday, try spending just 10-20 minutes to get your calendar sorted for the next week. It doesn’t have to be ultra-specific; all you need is some direction.

#6 – Create a default diary

Sometimes things don’t go to plan, so it helps to have a default diary that covers all of the critical blog management tasks.

This also makes planning out your time easier.

#7 – Get clear on your priorities

First, get clear on what you’re trying to achieve, then you can assign priorities to all of the smaller tasks that’ll get you to your goal(s).

#8 – Write your daily to-do’s on a notepad

Every morning, I write out my to-do list onto a notepad that sits by my computer. This notepad never moves and it’s only ever used for this single purpose.

I find that by writing out my task list, I’m more focused on what I need to do. Also, cross off tasks as you do them to build up a sense of momentum.

#9 – Check emails later in the day

I like to block out some time (maybe 30 minutes to an hour) in the afternoon for managing emails. This ensures that my day starts off my way and not as part of someone else’s agenda as most emails are.

It also means that I’m not constantly checking emails throughout the day, which can be a huge drain on productivity.

#10 – Cut out negative influences where possible

Things like the mainstream media present a disproportionate view of the negative to positive ratio of the world.

Swap out these sorts of influences for ones that will inspire you.

#11 – Listen to music that doesn’t distract you

If you find yourself listening to music and singing along to the words, you’re distracted from the task at hand.

Instead, try listening to music that has no words and is designed to improve your focus.

I use Brain.fm which generates audio patterns scientifically proven to enhance focus and concentration.

This is subjective. I know some people that prefer to work in silence – ultimately, go for whatever works best for you.

#12 – Eat a frog a day (or not)

Is there a task that you’ve been avoiding?

The more we avoid things, the more of an issue they can become. Start your day off by completing one of these tasks and you’ll work through other tasks far easier.

This doesn’t work for everyone – an alternative would be to start off working through small tasks to build up momentum. Try each approach and see what works for you.

#13 – Use tools to boost your productivity

The key here is to take a balanced approach. Use too many (or the wrong) tools and they’ll just drain your productivity.

Find a productivity tool that fits with how you want to work and stick with it – avoid the shiny object syndrome. I like using Workflowy for lists and Asana for team management.

#14 – Limit your time for work

Because we work for ourselves, it’s easy to work crazy hours, but the truth is that work expands to fill whatever time you give it.

So try giving yourself half the time and see how much more you can accomplish in that time.

#15 – Stop multi-tasking

Focus on a single task instead, and see how it impacts your productivity.

#16 – Take regular breaks

When we’re laser focused on the work at hand, it’s easy to become fully immersed in what we’re working on. That usually has a negative impact on productivity.

The brain can only focus for so long without taking a break.

I have a physical timer next to my computer that’s set to go off every 30 minutes to ensure I take my eyes off the screen – this helps me stay alert + maintain my focus.

Over to you

Do you have any quick tips to add to this list? Let us know in the comments below!

* Note: this post originally appeared in the form of a newsletter to my subscribers over at Blogging Wizard. Want to sign up? Click here to get started.

Adam Connell

Adam used to manage the content marketing efforts for brands earning well over 8 figures in annual revenue. Now he teaches entrepreneurs how to create a blog that thrives in a noisy online world over at BloggingWizard.com and here on his personal blog. Interesting fact: Adam can 'split the atom' on a yo-yo.

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  • Valuable tips – #9 and #10 are the most important ones, IMHO 🙂

    • Thanks! Indeed, just those two make a significant impact 🙂

  • Roy Dressel

    I agree with andy90, now I just need to try and implement #9. I am good a cutting out the negative, but email is an issue with me. I get cough up in email first thing and often get sent off in a totally different direction then what I had planned. Sometimes that’s a good direction with a new assignment, but often not.

    • Hi Roy – I can definitely relate to that. Email is one of the most tricky to master because often our line of work requires us to monitor/reply a lot more frequently than what would be the most productive.

  • Thanks for sharing Adam. I am intrigued with the maker vs manager’s schedule. A fresh perspective.

    • Sure thing, Mickey. Thanks for stopping by. It’s very interesting – it adds perspective to a lot of previous work experiences.

      • No prob Adam. Glad that you shared with us some hacks. Sometimes we are too bogged down with the chase that we overlook to take a step back and find ways to do things better

        • So true, Mickey. Finding some time to step back and think about our approach is so important.

          • Thanks Adam. Another challenge is we need more ways to get motivation and energy

          • Sure thing, Mickey. Great point – motivation can be a big challenge. That would be a great topic for another one of these quick tips style posts – thanks for mentioning it!

            – Adam

          • Np Adam. Please do let me know if you happen to write one on this once you are done with your current commitment. Btw, I like the quick tips style posts. Straight to the point and concise. Easy reading 🙂

          • Sure thing, will do. Glad you like the quick tips style 🙂 I wanted to try something completely different from the usual long-form content I publish on Blogging Wizard. It’s easier from a writing standpoint too!

          • Good point Adam. Maybe I could apply the same style too. Easier to write and read. Like they say, “simplicity is the ultimate sophistication”.

          • Maybe. Ultimately, you’ve got to go with what works best for you – for some, long-form is what works best. For example, if organic traffic is a goal, long-form usually performs best (but UX is a big factor there too now). As with all things, it’s worth testing just to see how it works for you.

            That said, I completely agree – simplicity really is the ultimate sophistication. Great quote!

  • Soukaina

    Hey Adam, thanks for the great advice! I love the point that you make about limiting your time for work. Like you said, I think it’s so easy to get caught up working. Especially when you are working for yourself. Unfortunately, people who work remotely feel that they have to “prove” themselves, so they often get stuck working harder and longer than most people. At least that has been the case in my experience. I always try to be active for at least half an hour a day whether it’s cardio, yoga or just walking. Regular activity keeps you healthy and also allows you to get away from all those pesky screens that we’re always sitting in front of.

    • Hey Soukaina, sure thing – glad it was helpful for you. I know you mean, I’ve had a similar experience.

      Great point about regular activity. It’s so critical for anyone that uses a computer for long periods of times. And there’s the productivity benefits to it too.

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