Top 3 Tips to Double Your Productivity

How would your day and life be different, if you would double your productivity? Simple and effortless rituals make it possible. What would the ritual that increases your productivity by 50% look like? Discover the top three tools that build such a ritual and allow you to do things quickly and efficiently. Set yourself up to win and get closer to your goals and dreams by implementing the top three productivity tools.

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Outline your work step by step

Break it down!

Breaking your tasks down into digestible chunks makes it easier for you to process them. It is more motivating to get started when you have small achievable tasks rather than one big project in front of you.

Why?

It is challenging to estimate the time and workload of a big project properly. If you have small steps instead, it’s easier to get an overview of the work.

Another benefit is that you’ve created a plan to process the task by setting out each step. This increases your productivity tremendously. It is comparable with driving a car. You might have a destination, but without a plan how to get there, you might take accidentally some detours and it will take longer for you to get to your desired destination.

Example – Productivity by outlining

Preparing a Toastmasters meeting (Toastmasters is a non-profit organization that teaches members public speaking, communication, and leadership skills.)

A Toastmasters meeting has almost always the same procedure. A simplified agenda looks like the following:

  1. Toastmaster (3 min)
  2. First Speaker (7 min)
  3. Toastmaster (2 min)
  4. Second Speaker (7 min)
  5. Toastmaster (2 min)
  6. Break (10 min)
  7. Toastmaster (2 min)
  8. Evaluation First Speaker (4 min)
  9. Toastmaster (2 min)
  10. Evaluation Second Speaker (4 min)
  11. Toastmaster (2 min)

The Toastmaster is the person who prepares the meeting and chooses the theme of the day. He has several small roles between the speeches.

Now, how can you outline the preparation of the meeting?

  1. Brainstorm a topic and choose the theme of the day.
  2. Research the theme of the day and specify it.
  3. How often is the Toastmaster in front of the audience? How much time does he need to fill between the speeches? These questions determine how much material needs to be prepared. The agenda above shows one 3 minute introduction, four 2 minute slots between the speeches and one 2 minute closing. This reveals the required information for outlining the next necessary steps.
  4. Prepare introduction and presentation of the theme of the day.
  5. Produce material for four small 2 minute speeches that is related to the meeting’s topic.
  6. Formulate the closing of the meeting.
  7. Practice.
Example – Productivity by breaking it down

Reading a 400 page book and preparing a presentation about the topic.

If we do not break it down, it will be challenging to get an idea of how long this task may take. We work unfocused, when we do not have specific goals. The project will automatically take longer.

On the other hand, if we split the task into digestible chunks, then we can accurately estimate the time needed, and set some specific goals. The small goals give us the focus to work towards the achievement of them.

Let’s say we want to finish this project within a month. The presentation at the end may take a week. That means we have 3 weeks to read the book. How much time do we need to allocate in order to achieve this goal? That is a simple calculation.

400 pages divided by 21 days (3 weeks) is about 20. That means we would need to read 20 pages a day. That sounds easy to achieve and it motivates us more than seeing a 400 page book in front of us.

Now, we can also play easily with these 20 pages a day. It might be better to focus on this project 3 days a week rather than doing a little bit every day. Having that said, it would be required to read 60 pages 3 times a week.

In this way, we have broken the project down into easily achievable steps.

Both examples can be adapted to any task.

Schedule and commit to block time

Schedule and do not re-schedule unless it’s a true emergency!

Often we waste time by figuring out if we should do a task now or later. This thought process already takes time. Additionally, procrastination can come into play. But as soon as we schedule a task, as it would be a meeting with ourselves, we don’t need to think about it anymore.

It needs to be a must for us in order to start right away. This saves time as we have bypassed the initial thought process and the possibility of procrastination.

Tip: If you apply the step above first and outline each step, then you can easily estimate the time needed for your task. This makes it possible to know exactly how much time you need to schedule.

Put yourself in a positive state

Have you made the experience that things are going smooth when you are optimistic, excited, and happy? That wasn’t by accident.

Our emotional state determines how well we perform. Positive states support our productivity. Negative states lessen our performance.

Now, how can you put yourself in a positive state?

  1. Create a compelling reason by asking why you want to do this task. See the bigger picture and not just the task itself. So, what does it bring you in the future? What benefits will you get by getting it done?
  2. Let your brain know that you are excited to do the task by smiling.
  3. Get optimistic by visualizing your success in advance. That means imagine yourself as if you already have achieved it.

Being in a positive emotional state will give you a boost in productivity.

 

All three tips are easy to implement into your day routine. It only takes a minimum of time to get the maximum out of your day.

Are you willing to set yourself up to win? Leave a comment below and let me know how these tips have influenced your productivity.

If you are unsure how to outline a specific task, then write a comment below and I am happy to give advice.