Veikko Arvonen, Guest Blogger
Maxed Out 20’s
Being productive is something that many people wish to accomplish but not everybody does. Chances are that you can also benefit from increased productivity. Maybe you have a load of tasks to do with your personal life or a big project that affects your career.
Today, I’d like to review some productivity hacks and a step-by-step guide for them. These hacks are easy to implement and has been proven to help increase productivity. I can say that because I’ve tried it myself.
Have you ever been in a moody state that makes even the simplest tasks incredibly difficult? Or, have you ever felt like a superhuman storming through your daily tasks?
With this guide, you’ll learn how to achieve the second situation by utilizing your own biology and the way that a human mind works.
The goal is to get your daily tasks done as early as possible, with maximum effectiveness, so you’ll have more time and energy to do things you enjoy. Sounds good? Let’s start!
The Most Productive Hours of the Day
The first 3-4 hours after you wake up, are typically, most productive hours of the day.
I’m sure there are some night owls out there that would 100% disagree with this statement. However, I believe the people who stay up late at night are inefficient with their tasks and routines. It may take time and a ton of effort to reverse
Therefore it makes sense to schedule your tasks for this part of the day. Sure, you can get things done later too, but the first hours are great for several reasons.
Firstly, you’ve just woken up. This means you haven’t exhausted yourself yet. Your brain has just had some relaxing sleep and your body is rested. At this point, you are naturally the most productive version of yourself. I can say this by my own experience.
When I used this technique, I finished a school task in 30 minutes and received great feedback. If I had done it the previous evening, it would have taken much more time.
Secondly, you’ll gain a headstart for the day. When you’ve completed your first task within the first hours of the day, you’ll gain a productive mentality. This mentality includes a small sense of pride and an urge to move on to the next task. This creates momentum that results in many tasks completed at the end of the day.
How To Get In The Productivity ‘Zone’
Now that we know why using the first hours of your day are so important, let’s go through a step-by-step guide on how to utilize them.
Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as getting up and start working. There are several rookie mistakes that many people do and will ruin your productivity. Luckily, they are fairly easy to avoid.
If you want to be productive and get stuff done, you’ll have to take care of your basic needs. These needs mean getting enough sleep, taking care of nutrition, and exercising.
Let’s start with sleep. Obviously, it’s very hard to be productive if you’ve slept five hours and are tired all the time. You can’t focus properly and you’ll get frustrated easily. Therefore aim to have 7-9 hours of sleep during the previous night.
Some people can get along with less, some people could need more, but it’s all about your personal needs. Figure out how much sleep you need and make sure to get it. It will make your day 10x easier.
You should never work hungry. I’ve tried it and it doesn’t end up well. When you’re hungry, you’re distracted and can’t focus. I recommend having a nice, healthy breakfast before working and then eating regularly.
I’m not a nutrition expert, but this is not rocket science. Just eat regularly and focus on whole foods with quality carbs to keep your energy levels high. Avoid eating sugar or getting overstuffed with fast food. Simple as that.
Make sure to include regular exercise in your routine. It can be anything as long as you enjoy it and it requires some physical effort. Lifting weights and doing cardio is great.
Regular exercise helps you to be productive by giving your mind time to recover from your deep work. On top of that, it keeps your body healthy which also has a positive effect on your mind.
How to Start Your Morning
When planning your day, figure out what is the best time for you to wake up. Whatever you’re planning to do, you should have your first hours free for that.
If you’re working a normal workweek, it may be a good idea to wake up super early so you can utilize the first hours for your tasks before work. If you have more time, you can wake up pretty much whenever you want. Just make sure you get enough sleep and have the first couple of hours free.
Some people promote the idea of waking up at 5 AM every single morning, but it’s useless if you end up having too little sleep. Sure, many successful people do it but what really matters is how you use your time. Not when you wake up.
Secondly, start your day by immediately doing something useful. Brush your teeth, make your bed, cook breakfast… This sets you in a productive state immediately and creates momentum.
Don’t watch the TV or check your social media. It will distract you from important things and ruins your mood with all the negativity we see today. I recommend ignoring your phone for at least 30 minutes after waking up.
Completing The Important Tasks
If you’ve followed the previous steps properly, you should be well-rested, in a great mood, and have the next few hours completely free.
Before starting, write down your daily goals on paper. Then, start going through them one by one. I recommend starting with the hardest task, so they will get easier over time when your productivity starts going down.
The sooner you start, the better. Make sure to stay organized and have breaks. A good rhythm is 50 minutes of work and a 10-minute break. You can also try 75/15. Doing this helps you to stay effective and avoid taking too long breaks.
Another important thing is to get rid of all the distractions. Mute your phone and place it away from you. If you constantly keep checking your phone, you’ll find it difficult to get anything done. If you have other people in the same apartment, tell them not to distract you. Working in a library, a café, or another good location may also be a good idea.
Once you get into the state of deep, undistracted work, you’ll gain momentum that amplifies itself. Combine this with the principles you learned previously, and you’ll get things done as fast as humanly possible.
Once you’ve completed your tasks, congratulations! You’ve successfully implemented proven and effective productivity tips and you’re probably having many precious hours of your day left.
Working Smarter, Not Harder
The best thing is that you can implement this strategy for anything in life. Whether you’re studying, working, building a business, or just planning to improve yourself.
The key to success is not about neglecting your social life, hustling 24/7, and burning yourself out. It’s about working smart and putting effort into things that matter. I’ve seen people who work like crazy and only end up burning out with mediocre results.
However, if you work smart, you’ll achieve the same thing in an hour than you would achieve in three or four when working tired and forgetting these basics. I know that learning how to work smart requires effort, but it’s definitely worth it.
I recently noticed that I had an undone task that was supposed to be completed a day ago. It was 9 PM and I was exhausted. If I had done it there, it would have probably required time and frustration. However, I set up the alarm early the next morning, and I was done in 30 minutes. On top of that, I enjoyed doing it.
There you have it. Utilizing these hacks will help you leverage the most valuable hours of the day for maximum productivity. I’ve tested these productivity hacks and have proven that it works. In fact, the last time I used it was today!
So, what’s something you know you should do to get closer to your dreams? What are the required action steps you need to take? I challenge you to figure them out and trying these tips tomorrow.
Imagine completing all the daily tasks right away and spending the rest of the day doing something you love, knowing that you don’t have to worry about your to-do list that evening. With this said, I wish you a productive week.
Read Also: A Life Hack That Really Works