10 Personal Productivity Tips to Keep You on Track

“The bad news is time flies. The good news is that you’re the pilot.”  Michael Altshuler

Time has always been a sneaky little thing when it comes to your personal productivity. Mentally, you’re probably still getting into the swing of a new year and have great expectations for 2017. Reality says that it’s almost Valentine’s Day, which means February is half over and March is right around the corner. Before you know it, the year will be one-quarter shot and your co-workers will be starting to talk about kids getting out of school and where they will be taking their summer vacations. Yikes!

Managing multiple projects, objectives and deadlines is a full-time job. It requires all of your concentration, skills, talents and dedication to keep your personal productivity high. If you are going to be successful at managing your time, one of the first things you need to do is identify your challenges and gain control of your workday.

This can be easier said than done. After all, managers, co-workers and team members all require a piece of your precious time and that’s just at work. Unless you’re a hermit, you probably have an outside life that requires your attention as well. (At least, we hope you do!)

These 10 personal productivity tips can help. Following these simple guidelines frees up precious time to spend on the truly important tasks and projects on your plate. Use these rules and watch your productivity grow.

  1. Know how you currently spend your time. In order to manage your time, you must first know how you spend it. Keep a fairly detailed log for a week to see exactly how you use your time.
  2. Identify your “prime time.” Some people work best first thing in the morning while others tend to “wake up” later in the day. Identify your best time and use it to carry out your most important or difficult tasks.
  3. Do tomorrow’s planning tonight. This allows you to start off working first thing the next morning without having to decide what to do first.
  4. Ask yourself “Why am I doing what I’m doing right now?” While this may seem like a silly question, it is, in fact, a valid one. It’s easy to get sidetracked on less vital issues. Asking yourself this question can help you refocus your attention where it is most beneficial.
  5. Continually look at ways of freeing up time. Remember that this is a process so constant tweaking is perfectly acceptable.
  6. Plan your work, and work your plan. Don’t spend your time making a plan unless you actually intend to put it to use.
  7. Delegate whenever possible. Don’t fall into the trap of feeling you have to do everything since no one else can do it as well as you do. Not only is this not true, you’re causing yourself additional stress by trying to do it all.
  8. Delegate wisely. It is poor planning—and unfair to your employees—to delegate tasks to them that they don’t have the skills, time, authority or resources to do.
  9. Identify your high-payoff items. Spend most of your time and energy on those items with the biggest return.
  10. Concentrate on results, not on being busy. While you may work hard and go home exhausted after a long day at work, at the end of the day, consider what you actually accomplished.

Do these tips and get control of your workload and your life.  Who knows? You may even get back to enjoying those two days where most of America takes off from work. What were those days called?

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