Have you ever had to do a task in the office which you really really wanted to get over and done with because you’re so exhausted already from having to work at it for days and weeks and you can’t seem to finish it because of things beyond your control?

Recently, I just went through 2 of the most long-running tasks that I’ve had to simultaneously work on for my day job. It was so frustrating because it took me a month including many of my weekends during that time to finish both of them. There were even days and nights when I barely interacted with people in the office and my hubby so I wouldn’t lose my focus. It wasn’t a good time and I don’t think that anyone should have to go through it again unnecessarily.

To help you get by during very challenging times in your work and personal lives just like what I went through, I recommend the following activities to increase your productivity and finish what you’re required or what you’ve set out for yourself to do:

1. Fill your calendar with your to-dos

You have to make sure that all your relevant work-related tasks will be part of your daily and weekly schedule for however long it’ll take you to get them done. Without appearing unkind, you’ll have to decline even inquiries on other matters while you’re working on your more urgent tasks.

2. Do the hardest task first

Although there may be other tasks that you’ll need to attend to every now and then, you’ll have to work on the most urgent or arduous deliverable for majority of your working day. Once it’s done, you can just breeze through the less burdensome ones and will end up getting more done.

3. Avoid chitchats like the plague

Though you don’t want to appear snobbish, you should avoid chitchats that last for more than 10 minutes during times that require you to finish a task at work. Transfer to an empty spot or room if your coworkers are talking their ears off.

4. Block out noise

When you don’t have an ideal working space and your colleagues can just approach you while you’re focused on your work, then it’s time for you to invest on a good pair of wireless noise-cancelling headphones. People will have second thoughts in disturbing you with trivial matters.

5. Listen to suitable music

Oftentimes, it helps to listen to music which induces focus while working on highly analytical tasks. Otherwise, you can opt for music that boosts your spirit and makes it more enjoyable for you to accomplish the task at hand.

6. Don’t read emails

If you want to get some serious work done, you should avoid starting and filling your day with visits to your inbox. It will derail your plans for the rest of the day when you read people’s requests from you. Instead, set times when you’ll look into your emails specially if you have other pressing matters to attend to at work.

7. Make use of templates

When your work entails that you regularly prepare documents such as proposals to corporate clients or even just emails, you can accomplish them faster when you have templates for them. With this technique, you won’t need to always start from scratch.

8. Simplify what you can

When your work entails that you regularly prepare documents such as proposals to corporate clients or even just emails, you can accomplish them faster when you have templates for them. With this technique, you won’t need to always start from scratch.

9. Put systems in place

Whether you’re an employee or you have a business of your own, setting up systems or structure in the way you do things will help you to be as organized as possible.

10. Automate what you can

In line with simplifying your work, automating certain tasks will greatly benefit you. Using applications that can generate reports at a predefined time or send out notifications when a certain condition is met are good examples. Automated events such as those should be something that you should personally look into or recommend to management.
If you’re like me who does chores at home as well, the next tips are a few things that make my weekdays more bearable and my weekends more enjoyable.

11. Sleep at a preset time

You have to commit to retire at night at a preset time to set the following day’s tone. Sleeping too late might result to waking up late the next day and a rushed pace at the start of the day. Conversely, sleeping too late but needing to wake up early the next day might cause you to feel groggy and, overall, less productive.

12. Wake up at the right time every day

You have to commit to retire at night at a preset time to set the following day’s tone. Sleeping too late might result to waking up late the next day and a rushed pace at the start of the day. Conversely, sleeping too late but needing to wake up early the next day might cause you to feel groggy and, overall, less productive.

13. Follow a morning routine

Try to stick to a set of activities that you’ll do as soon as you wake up in the morning. It’ll set you off to a good start because you’ll feel that you’ve already accomplished a few of your to-dos for the day.

14. Follow an evening routine

Just like sticking to a routine in the morning, you should also establish your evening routine before you retire at night to cap off on a good note and to set yourself up to a good day.

15. Iron work clothes for the entire week

It’s not a delightful chore for most of us but something that you’ll be grateful that you did (preferably on weekends). Think of what your coming week will look like then choose and iron your outfits for the entire week. It’s one thing off your list which you’ll be thankful for specially when you have to extend your stay in the office to finish an urgent task during the week. To make it more bearable, listen to upbeat tunes, an audio book or a noteworthy podcast.

16. Prepare undergarments for the entire week

Other than your work clothes, you’ll also want to prepare a set of undergarments for each day of the coming week. You’ll avoid frantically looking for a pair of socks while you’re hurriedly dressing up in the morning.

17. Load laundry several days a week

Put 1-2 loads of laundry on certain days of the workweek to avoid having a massive pileup on weekends which will lessen your time to relax or do other things such as your side hustle.

18. Do another task while watching tv or listening to music/podcast

You’ll want to do another household chore like folding clothes while watching tv or listening to your favorite tunes or even a podcast. This way, you’ll make it more enjoyable specially when you ask your kids to help out.

19. Do another task whenever you go to another area of the house

Whenever you transfer to another area of house, think of other tasks that you need to get done in that room/floor. It could be putting another load of laundry in the washer or removing them. That way, you’ll make your trip more productive.

20. Set “me” time

No matter how much your family and work demand from you, self-care is essential to your wellbeing to maximize your productivity when you need to. Allot 2-4 hours per week for yourself. You might find that you’re able to do that only on early Saturday mornings. You can actually just go for a walk or watch a movie or even read a book in the comforts of your home.

Takeaway

As a wife and/or mom and an employee or entrepreneur or even a homemaker, women have to go through hectic lives on a daily basis so it greatly helps when we set ourselves up to be as productive as possible at work and at home. How about you? What productivity tips do you swear by?

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