In this article, you’ll find out about nine things you should let go, stop or give up to increase your productivity. These thoughts will help you to find time that you didn’t even know you had.
We always speak of it and hear it all over on social media: We are supposed to adopt new habits, such as this new morning routine or specific tips and tricks that we can incorporate into our daily lives to be more productive.
But what if it’s all about less, not more. What if we started abandoning certain habits instead of constantly adding new ones? And despite quitting some, we’d still be productive, perhaps even more. Sounds exciting, don’t you think?
Once again, you can achieve a high level of productivity by STOPPING these 9 things. Let’s go!
Deadlines: Stop working without them
Stop working without deadlines. It doesn’t matter what type of person you are – from Marmot to Busy Bee – this tip helps everybody. Tony Robbins says: “when would now be a good time?”
Today: “Ahh, I’ll just do it later”
Later: “Tomorrow is fine too”
Tomorrow: “I’ll definitely do it next weekend”
Does that sound familiar? Then you should start setting deadlines to create a sense of urgency.
This gives you focus, and you will simply do the things, instead of dragging them days or weeks into the future.
Deadlines work especially well on tasks which you don’t enjoy as much as creating content, for example your tax return. But as we all know, eventually you’ll have to do it anyway. So why not this evening?
If you are the perfectionist type that loves to double and triple check things, then you should DEFINITELY not work without a deadline, as you will always find more to improve. But you don’t have to do that. At some point it’s just good enough.
Fun: Stop focusing on results only
“It’s about the journey, not the destination”. We have all heard this one before and it’s easy to say.
That shouldn’t mean that the result should not be important to you. But it is beneficial to not only focus on the end-result, but also on the process of getting there.
A result requires willpower, and willpower is limited in each person’s day. A process on the other hand is a proven strategy that you can follow. This makes each task clearer, you know what to do and can switch to autopilot.
This saves you time and energy and therefore makes you more productive.
With this you can concentrate on the small successes and will notice yourself nearing your goal.
Just make sure to choose an enjoyable route. That’s what it’s all about because the journey is about what you do daily.
Free calendar: Stop cramming your calendar
Stop ramming your calendar full from morning to evening with appointments and to-do’s, trying to plan every minute of your day.
You should actively schedule free time where you don’t allow any meetings. You should actively block time in your calendar in which you don’t have any activity, plans or to-dos to finish.
Call this blocker anything you like:
- Creative Break
- Time to Breathe
And use this time individually in any way you like:
- Take the time to do something that feels good in the moment
- Do some exercises
- Just take a break
- Have a quick power nap
- Try to stay offline for 30 mins and place your smartphone far out of reach.
- Meditate and take a breather
- Go for a walk around the block or in nature
- Spend time with your pet
You can also do something proactiv, like reading a book or learning something new. It’s all about not planning anything in advance and not perceiving it as pressure.
The goal is not to have a full calendar. The goal is to have a calendar that enables you to read, to learn and to speak with new people whenever you wish to do so.
We can promise you, this will help you to be more creative, or to stay creative, to live healthier, as well as to make you feel more awake and calm. And eventually, to be more productive when you really need to be.
Give your challenges room to breathe and re-start with new energy after a well-deserved break.
Decisions: Stop making so many decisions every day
What will I wear today?
Will I drive to the office today?
What will I eat today?
Will I exercise today?
It’s not without reason that Mark Zuckerberg and other public figures always wear the same outfit. It’s not without reason that the concept of meal prepping was invented and went viral on social media.
Why does this make sense in this context? These things all reduce the number of decisions that you are making on a daily basis! Decision-making is draining. With so many small decisions, you’ll lack the energy for other (truly) important ones. Additionally, you will of course save some time too.
Just see it this way, you don’t have to decide everything today, i.e. in just one day.
Stop answering calls while seated
It’s simultaneously easy and effective. It costs you nothing and is a win-win situation, as you are moving your body and gaining new perspective.
- Pace up and down the room
- Walk through the entire house
- Jump on the trampoline
- Use your stepper
- Run on the treadmill
- Climb stairs
All in all: It’s better to move than to sit, while you are on the phone. If you incorporate this small habit into your day, then you’ll do an easy daily workout, like 10,000 steps or 30 minutes of exercise. It’s fast and you’ll have it completed before you are finished working.
Stop waiting: Stop hoping for luck, create your own destiny
You can sit at home and wait for good things to happen, but sometimes it can take a long time for them to come into place.
Therefore, you should be the change that you want to see. Don’t wait with the mentality “when-then”, for example: When I retire, I will finally travel the world.
Productive people don’t just have luck, they have luck on purpose because every day they do the things that are required to shape their life the way they envision it.
There are small things you can do every day that can change your life. And don’t forget: “ordinary moments are a gift”.
Goals: Stop having too many
Do you feel like you are not achieving anything in your life? Then maybe you should try setting fewer goals for yourself.
Maybe you are wondering how certain people in your life or people with similar personalities seemingly reach unattainable goals. If you look closely enough, you will see that they only ever concentrate or have been concentrated on one goal at a time. They don’t try to be or to do everything at once.
Stop saying “Yes” to time-intensive activities
To steal time – well one can’t actually steal time. Nevertheless, it does sometimes feel like it when people start addressing you with their requests and you no longer have time for yourself after dealing with them. It may sound harsh, but sometimes you need to evaluate if you really need to attend to the request, or if you are better off using this time for yourself. It’s a fine line of course.
The next time you are not sure when somebody asks for your time, simply say no. Think about if you actually want to do it, if it is important, or if you get a feeling of guilt from saying no.
- Will you remember it at the end of the month?
- Will it still be relevant to you in one year?
If no, then it’s probably not that important. It’s your time. You are allowed to say no. Dare to say no and do it without feeling guilty.
Whenever you do someone a favor, you are gifting your time and restricting it for your own goals. Sometimes we need and want to be selfless, and that’s okay. But every now and then it’s okay to use time for yourself, to keep it for yourself and to safeguard it.
Not convinced yet? Just give it a try. Maybe start with a small request. It gets easier every time. Just think: You and your time are important.
Stop overworking yourself: No longer overwork yourself to death
It’s not worth it. Especially because inspiration comes from good rest. Studies at Stanford University have shown that creativity and productivity drop with time. Sometimes a 10-hour day is even less productive than a 6-hour day.
Overworking and overloading is the opposite of productivity. If you have arrived at the point where you feel you have no more energy left, tired, depleted and easily irritated, then it’s about time for some rest.
Give yourself that break. At some point your work will no longer improve. But the good news is: your your work gets better again after some time off. This helps your body to recharge its batteries and in consequence you’ll have a refreshed mind to get your thoughts in order again. Here it sometimes helps to do simple tasks, like small household chores.
Creativity is often increased when we are exposed to new (yet somewhat mundane) situations.
These nine points will help you to be more productive while doing less.
That means, you should stop!!! Why? It creates more time for other things – either for your business or your balance, ideally for both.
It’s not just about productivity in its usual sense. These nine points will also help you to be more consistent. To place the focus on the right things, to focus on your content.
Read here which Creator Tools are helping your productivity and are useful for you in your everyday life to lead a successful and relaxed Creator Life.