How To be so Productive You Can't Stand it You might think that creatives as diverse as Internet entrepreneur Jack Dorsey, industrial design firm Studio 7.5, and bestselling Japanese novelist Haruki Murakami would have little in common. In fact, the tenets that guide how they – and exceptionally productive creatives across the board – make ideas happen are incredibly similar. Here are 10 laws of productivity we’ve consistently observed among serial idea executors: 1. Break the seal of hesitation. A bias toward action is the most common trait we’ve found across the hundreds of creative professionals and entrepreneurs we’ve interviewed. 2. When our ideas are still in our head, we tend to think big, blue sky concepts. 3. Trial and error is an essential part of any creative’s life. To avoid ‘blue sky paralysis,’ pare your idea down to a small, immediately executable concept. 4. When working on in-depth projects, we generate lots of new ideas along the way. 5. 6. 7. 8. Few activities are more of a productivity drain than meetings. 9.
The Zeigarnik effect: uncompleted tasks stay in mind until you finish them If you, like us, are constantly looking for more efficient ways to work, then you will really appreciate what the Zeigarnik effect has to offer. It carries the name of Bluma Zeigarnik, a Lithuanian-born psychologist who first described this effect in her doctoral thesis in the late 1920s. Some accounts have it that Zeigarnik noticed this effect while she was watching waiters in a restaurant. Bluma Zeigarnik, 1921. Zeigarnik didn’t leave it at that, though. If you look around you, you will start to notice the Zeigarnik effect pretty much everywhere. As writer Ernest Hemingway once said about writing a novel, “it is the wait until the next day that is hard to get through.” Now you’re probably wondering how the Zeigarnik effect improves productivity. The Zeigarnik effect means good news for procrastinators: you are less likely to procrastinate once you actually start a task. Compare this to the 8-hour work day. Have you observed the Zeigarnik effect anywhere else?
43 Simple Ways To Simplify Your Life Post written by Sherri Kruger. Follow me on Twitter. Simplicity. How can we make things simpler, more streamlined, or more efficient? Is this all just hype or is there actually something to this simplicity thing? Reducing complexity in my life has reduced stress, increased free time, and top priorities are actually top priorities. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36. 37. 38. 39. 40. 41. 42. 43. There are countless ways to simplify your life, these are but a few.
The Secret to Productivity: Focus Technology has helped us do so much more, so much faster. But many experts argue that work-related systems and tools haven’t necessarily made us more productive. How many times does your phone, tablet or computer chime to indicate email or a Facebook notification? The reality is that while technology has the ability to improve productivity, too many people allow it to distract. Ultimately, the key to getting more done in less time requires focus. A cluttered, overly busy mind is like a cluttered, messy home; it takes too long to find stuff and get things done. Stop switch-tasking. Schedule tasks in blocks of time. Focus on the one-thing. Turn off notifications including the ringer on your phone. Wear headphones. Keep your work area organized based on how you work.
Designing The Perfect Daily Routine: The Ultimate System Harvard’s Positive Psychology Professor, Tal Ben-Shahar, believes happiness is the result of balancing meaning with pleasure. But understanding what gives us meaning and what gives us pleasure is not as easy as it sounds. In this article, I will teach you how to track everything you do and then restructure your activities in the optimal way. You will learn the best way to end procrastination and develop the right habits such as meditation, exercise, and learning so that you can grow every day. You will learn how to work diligently on that which gives you meaning and reward yourself accordingly with pleasure. Work, for example, is thought of by most people as annoying and tedious, but psychologists Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi and Judith LeFevre show otherwise. In their article, Optimal Experience in Work and Leisure [PDF], they show that while people say they prefer leisure over work, actually, they have more ‘flow’ and ‘peak experiences’ at work. aTime Logger 2 The Meaning Map 1. 2. 3. 4.
Boost Your Productivity By Quitting These 10 Everyday Habits That's Ruining Your Productivity Being productive isn’t easy, regardless of how badly you’d like to be and how hard you think you’re willing to work. But increasing your output at work and in life is a much more attainable goal if you’re not sabotaging yourself with bad habits. Here are 10 things that are ruining your productivity and you should stop doing right now: 1. Since most of us work with access to the internet, it’s easy to get side-tracked looking up the answer to a random question that just popped into your head. That’s why Quora user Suresh Rathinam recommends writing down these thoughts or questions on a notepad. An alternative way to this writing on your journal what you did through the day. 2. Whether it’s a new diet, workout routine, or work schedule, one of the most difficult things about forming a new habit is the urge to cheat as a reward for sticking to a routine for a while. 3. As researchers have found, people have a limited amount of willpower that decreases throughout the day. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.
How to Spend the First 10 Minutes of Your Day - Ron Friedman If you’re working in the kitchen of Anthony Bourdain, legendary chef of Brasserie Les Halles, best-selling author, and famed television personality, you don’t dare so much as boil hot water without attending to a ritual that’s essential for any self-respecting chef: mise-en-place. The “Meez,” as professionals call it, translates into “everything in its place.” In practice, it involves studying a recipe, thinking through the tools and equipment you will need, and assembling the ingredients in the right proportion before you begin. It is the planning phase of every meal—the moment when chefs evaluate the totality of what they are trying to achieve and create an action plan for the meal ahead. For the experienced chef, mise-en-place represents more than a quaint practice or a time-saving technique. “Mise-en-place is the religion of all good line cooks,” Bourdain wrote in his runaway bestseller Kitchen Confidential. Most of us do not work in kitchens. Finally, prioritize your list.
22 Life-changing Tips on How To Phenomenally Boost Your Productivity I’ve been testing and adjusting various productivity techniques for the past five years, read lots of books (most of them repeating) and here’s some of my findings: It’s not about time. It’s about energy. We try to squeeze as many hours in one work day, to be “productive,” but in the end everything depends less on time, and more on your focus, motivation and overall well-being (all of them linked directly with energy levels). I’ve recently talked about my productivity techniques obsessions in an internal presentation at Grapefruit, and the resulting presentation is on Slideshare: Productivity porn Some of the key findings: Decide what’s important because in 5 years, 80% of what you do today will not turn into anything. Sleep, food and exercise can help you triple your outcome, because they increase focus, motivation and energy levels. The 2-minute rule: if you can do something (like replying to an email, or a house chore) in 2 minutes, do it now. Tiny habits (Tiny Habits w/ Dr. Pomodoros.
A Pattern Language for Productivity, Pattern #3: Checklists by Andre · 4 Comments Checklists are mental inventories made physical. Instead of trying to hold your thoughts on a topic entirely in your head, write them down as a list. Having a list to review reduces the need to rethink what you need to consider about a topic. For instance, a travel checklist would include all of the items you need to take with you on a trip: TicketBoarding passDress suit2 casual shirts2 casual pantsToiletriesEtc… For blogging, I brainstormed a checklist of future articles to write. Checklists are a great way of seeding the mind for further thinking on a topic. Toiletries to takeAirport restrictionsWhat’s already available for free in the hotel roomDrugstores and markets near hotelCommercial toiletry kits The first checklist was meant to be an inventory of what to bring. You can spend five minutes creating a checklist of checklists that would be useful to make during windows of free time: Checklists are a great way to avoid reacting to problems in a knee-jerk fashion.
How to Be More Productive and Eliminate Time-Wasting Activities by Using the 'Eisenhower Box' | James Clear Dwight Eisenhower lived one of the most productive lives you can imagine. Eisenhower was the 34th president of the United States, serving two terms from 1953 to 1961. During his time in office, he launched programs that directly led to the development of the Interstate Highway System in the United States, the launch of the Internet (DARPA), the exploration of space (NASA), and the peaceful use of alternative energy sources (Atomic Energy Act). Before becoming president, Eisenhower was a five-star general in the United States Army, served as the Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces in Europe during World War II, and was responsible for planning and executing invasions of North Africa, France, and Germany. At other points along the way, he served as President of Columbia University, became the first Supreme Commander of NATO, and somehow found time to pursue hobbies like golfing and oil painting. Urgent and important (tasks you will do immediately). Elimination Before Optimization Sources
Why Efficiency is Overrated – and What to Do About It An awful lot of time-management techniques show an obsession with efficiency. And being efficient – getting tasks done quickly – is certainly important. But efficiency for its own sake is worthless. Sure, you could spend three hours implementing a new system that lets you automatically tag every email as it comes in. But I doubt that you’re going to look back in ten years’ time and say, “Wow, my inbox was always so well organized.” If you pay too much attention to efficiency, you might actually become less effective. Here’s how efficiency is damaging: Playing the Numbers Game Efficiency tends to reduce everything to numbers: How many emails did you answer this morning? Now, I’ll be the first to agree that paying attention to metrics can help you with your time management. What about that long, heartfelt email from an old friend? Change It: Cut yourself some slack, and remember that there are many situations that can’t be reduced to numbers. Shying Away From Challenges Inability to Enjoy Life
52 Tips for Happiness and Productivity By Leo Babauta This is something I’ve been wanting to write for some time — a Handbook for Life. Now, is there any handbook that can be a guide to every single person? Of course not. This is just a list of tips that I think will help many people in life — some of them common-sense tips that we often forget about. It’ll also become apparent from the links in this handbook that I’ve written about this stuff before. How to use this handbook This handbook is not meant to be a step-by-step guide, nor should you adopt all the tips below. Pick and choose the tips that will be most useful to you. 52 Tips for Happiness and Productivity Try rising early. Are You Taking Productivity Too Far? Since you’re reading Pick the Brain, I expect that you’ll agree with me when I say that productivity is a good thing. Being productive generally means: You’re living up to your full potential (instead of daydreaming about what might be … and never actually doing it)You’re being proactive rather than reactive, taking control of your own lifeYou feel good about yourself and your life: each day, you have a sense of accomplishmentYou’ve got clear goals, and you’re on track to reach them Pretty great, huh? It sounds like a recipe for a happy life. Except… …can you end up being too productive? The Darker Side of Productivity Like I say, I’m all for productivity. But … I know that sometimes I take it a little too far. Yes, getting things done (or if you’re a David Allan fan, Getting Things Done) is good. When you get overly focused on being productive: Your relationships suffer. Do you need to take your foot off the pedal? Taking a Break From Productivity You could: So … a challenge for you!