by Sam Horne
So let's face it we are guilty of saying ' ...but I don't have enough time to...'
go to the gym
spend time with the kids
build a side business
look after myself
This prevents you from committing to building the life and dream that you want.
In reality - we all have the same 24 hours in a day, a homeless guy and a billionaire - we are all the same!
The question is "How do you spend yours?"
So if you want to make changes and can't figure out how, we need to implement strategies to become more productive.
Stay away from your phone as long as possible in the morning
The morning is the best time to ensure you don't hit the screen straight away for scrolls.
If you use your phone as an alarm, you can continue to do or (or buy an actual digital clock alarm...you know old school style) but keep it on FLIGHT MODE.
If you seek to have more time for yourself in a morning, start building this in...start small and wake up just 10-15 minutes earlier for a couple of weeks then gradually build it with 15 min increments.
When you look at your phone - it has been found that it is an addiction for many, releasing dopamine and serotonin creating that addiction cycle. Do you ever just feel like you are pulled to your phone despite not needing to actually use it? I know I do....for me this is where my morning walks come in; podcast, headphones and just walk, breathe and practice gratitude.
You choose to start the day PROACTIVELY or REACTIVELY....Your phone will cause a reactive response more often than not.
To become more PROACTIVE - you need to work on yourself.
Want to go a step further? Turn of all phone notifications where you can. Luckily I never have been able to get my IG notifications to work anyway so this does save me some pain!
2. Prep your brain!
Tasks take time to transition into, take 6 big deep breaths (in through the nose, out through the mouth) as you move into a new task for the day. This calms your brain into the brain waves required to hit a more focused level.
3. Eliminate all distractions where possible
Create a better space to work, take time out from your kids where you can for a short set period of time, stick on your headphones, listen to music (I use binaural beats). Reduce computer notifications - either permanently or periodical.
Have you ever listed all of your distractions? Grab a pen and paper and jot them down, then like a business plan; plan how you work to reduce these as I appreciate we can not remove everything but we can consider techniques to help improve them. Use your 24 hours wisely!
Did you know a distraction (even like getting a text and not even reading it) can knock your focus and then take 10-20 mins to then refocus on the task at hand!
4. Stop Multitasking!!!
There have been studies to show WE CAN NOT MULTITASK....yes even women! The conscious brain can only do one thing at a time. If you are multitasking it is known at task switching, and this will actually take you longer to get these tasks done as your full productivity won't be applied to each task. You will do better doing one at a time!
In studies it has actually shown that multitasking actually makes you appear dumber as your quality of work becomes worse. Be a SINGLE TASKER!
5. Have a Notepad to hand
Whenever you are working on something and required focus, yet an idea pops into your head...write it down. Physically getting it down; it helps your brain to see it as something physical and tangible, but also releases it, so your brain can crack on.
Before starting your main tasks of the day; something I find useful as I come to sit at my desk is literally brain dump on my notepad all the things I feel i need to get done in that day too - so it’s there in black and white, not in an app, on another browser tab...PAPER! You can then hyperfocus on your single task.
6. Always have headphones
Regardless of where you work, have some with you. Like I mentioned before, I use Binaural beats and ‘focus’ - there are loads of these on YouTube so choose one that suits you and tune in whilst you work. The brainwaves the B.Beats triggers works on those required to focus in, as well as ones that also work on deep sleep, calmness, creativity...try it and have a search for your next task.
7. Pomodoro Technique!!
Hyper focus mode right here! Using your binaural beats use a track where you set it to the last 25 minutes of play. For this time you solely focus on just this task, then take a 5 min break and repeat this 3x over before taking a 20 minute break.
WHY?? The human brain peaks in focus around 10 minutes, then it begins to drop.
So if you work for 60-90 mins on a task, 10 mins in your focus drops….then this downward dip is potentially a huge waste of time and ineffective working.
Pomodoro allows you to have 3x spikes of epic focus in the same 90 minute window!
Using your phone timer to set these timings can also prove as a distraction, when you keep checking’ if you are nearly done yet...phantom phone syndrome too when you ‘think’ you feel it going off.
8. Focus Rating alarms
As some of you know I set and label my alarms through the day, not only to remind me to eat, but also to remind me of my affirmations and I read and say them back to myself.
Depending how many you wish to set - also when your alarm goes off; rate your focus on a scale of 1-10 and log it for a week to see if you notice any times that you are more or less focused on a weekly routine.
What are your best chunks of time? Do your most important tasks in this chunk of time!!
You can really use this to your advantage to ensure you do your best work within this time!
Which one will you start with this week??
Become your own Supreme Minority!