3 Tips To Save An Hour A Day
Let’s be real… There’s a lot to do in a day. You’ve got your work and mission, which deserve your very best. Then there are responsibilities like kids and families that are a priority, you have passions and projects that you enjoy doing, and of course there’s your self-care to ensure that you have the capacity to show up on fire for all of the above.
That’s why today I want to share with you 3 tips that when incorporated in your life, will give you an hour of time back so that you can have more balance, harmony, and success.
Tip #1 - Use a schedule to sniff out distractions.
Nir Eyal, a friend of mine who’s a world-renowned author, wrote a book called "Indistractable". In this book he makes a really important distinction - If you want to avoid getting distracted you need to be clear on what you’re being distracted from.
In other words, there is no ‘distraction’ unless you’ve clearly defined ‘traction’. Traction is simply when you’re following through on what you want to be doing. Your schedule is your testament to all of the things that you want to get done. It’s your intention for how you plan to spend your time, and when you see it as a reference point of that intention you can quickly determine what is a distraction and get better at avoiding them.
Tip #2 - Get in control of your communications
We live in a world where pings, dings, and rings are constantly hijacking our attention. When we address these notifications it pulls us out of a task and redirects our focus. Once that text, email, or phone call is addressed, we return to the original task but we need to refamiliarize ourselves to return to producing quality work.
And that’s the problem. There’s something called “attention residue” which causes our brain to remain occupied by what we were just focused on even when we’re no longer paying attention to it. It causes us to have a fraction of our normal cognitive function and perform at a fraction of our fullest capacity.
So in order to eliminate this ‘mental hangover’, what you can do is batch your communications. Dedicate a few segments of 30 minutes throughout the day to stack your communications with other people so that you can stay more focused outside of that time.
Tip #3 - Productivity isn’t about getting more done, it’s about doing what you want to be doing
Society has come to equate how productive we are with how much we get done. That’s not the case. Productivity is actually about how effectively you spend your time, which includes work, personal, and self-care activities.
When you broaden your lens to view other non-work related things as productive, you start seeing how good of a day you’re having. You realize how on top of everything you are. And with that positive perception you gain momentum that carries you between tasks, helping you transition fast and keep pace with the day.
And a bonus tip: Give yourself buffer time
This is an extension of the last point about momentum. You can really magnify the impacts of having momentum by running ahead of schedule and completing things that you didn’t expect to. What’s the best way to do that? Give yourself some dead space to make sure you get through fewer, critical things. And also, adding buffers in your schedule helps you take on the inevitable things that come up in the day without consequence.
Implement these things - using a schedule to sniff out distractions, get in control of your communications, redefine productivity, and give yourself buffer time - and you’ll feel how effortlessly your day flows!