Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on August 6, 2019

9 Killer Productivity Lifehacks to Supercharge Your Success Rate

9 Killer Productivity Lifehacks to Supercharge Your Success Rate

Without productivity, you can’t accomplish anythingOr your results will be very lower than your true potential.

Productivity is the quality of creating something. Productivity is measured by the positive outcome of the energy you devote in a project.

The higher it is the more you can achieve. When your productivity is sky-high you can distribute your work and finish it in the best way possible, thereby achieving more goals and getting bigger rewards for your work.

Unfortunately, your productivity is highly threatened by many enemies.

These enemies can be very destructive and if you let them affect your productivity you jeopardize your success. You risk of not getting your work done, losing deadlines or even worse surrendering without even trying.

We all have the same 24 hours every day. The way we use these 24 hours is up to every one of us.

If you find the right methods, the right productivity lifehacks, you can take advantage of these 24 hours to the utmost.

The scope of this article is to give you 9 really powerful productivity lifehacks that will help you become a repetitive winner.

You probably won’t be able to implement every technique because it depends on your every day schedule. I hope that you will find some tips among the list that suit your lifestyle. The more of these tips you follow, the better for your productivity.

1. Enter the 2 Hour Hermit Mode

What is the 2 hour hermit mode? Will you need to live alone in a remote cabin? Of course not, unless you would enjoy that experience.

What you have to do is simpler than that.

For 2 hours every day, focus on your work and try to do what you have to do completely undisturbed. Lock yourself in your room, in the bathroom or even in the garage. Stay somewhere where you can find COMPLETE quiet for 2 hours.

It doesn’t matter if your mom is calling you endlessly, if your girlfriend wants to meet you or if your house is on fire. You have to be completely alone and focused on your craft.

Find a place where no one will disturb you. Absolutely nobody. Even if the God wants to talk to you, he will have to wait until the 2 hours are over.

That’s how important it is to be completely undisturbed. If you are working on something important and then you answer a phone call you are done. Adios productivity.

You lose all your momentum. Your brain takes a big break and gives a signal to your body that you should rest more.

How to enter the hermit mode:

Advertising

1. Simply close your phone or put it in airplane mode. Answer any calls or messages after the 2 hours.

2. Logout from all social media.

3. If you live with your parents or roommate tell them to be quiet for these 2 hours and lock yourself in your room.

4. If you can’t find a quiet place, consider going to your local library.

5. Have some water or snack next to you for when you are thirsty or hungry. Going to the bathroom is acceptable; you don’t want to smell like urine…or something worst than urine.

If your schedule is too demanding, it doesn’t necessarily need to be 2 hours. You can spend 60 minutes or even 30 minutes. If what you want to do is important, you will find some time.

Otherwise, it wasn’t so important. On the other side, if your schedule is too loose, you could definitely enter the hermit mode for more than 2 hours.

2. Close Your Phone until as Late as Possible

When you are working on something, whether this is just your homework or an important business plan, hearing your phone ringing can really destroy your concentration. By putting your phone in silence mode or even better closing it you have the oportunity to work uninterrupted.

Just like with the hermit mode, you reduce interruptions and you can be more focused on your craft.

3. Focus on One Task at a Time

Multi-tasking can reduce your productivity up to 40%, according to behavioral psychologist Susan Weinschenk.

According to Susan, people can’t do more than one task at a time. Actually, multi-tasking is just switching between different tasks.

It’s impossible to do them all together so your brain focuses to one of them and quickly changes that focus to another task.

If you think that this helps in getting more things done, you should know that it actually takes MORE time than if you did each task separately.

Your brain can focus on only one cognitive (mental) task. You can only be reading or you can only be watching the news, but you aren’t able to do both together.

What actually happens when you are trying to watch the news and read simultaneously is that your brain switches from the one task to the other. So you are not multitasking at all. You are just switching tasks and produce LESS.

If you want to keep your productivity levels high stop switching between tasks. Do one thing at a time and prioritize your work. Then do the most important tasks first.

4. Start Your Day Doing What You Hate

Okay, this doesn’t sound really great, I know. Just let me explain.

Advertising

When we have to do something boring or an unpleasant task, we tend to procrastinate. As a result, we push that task later in the day and in the end we don’t do it at all.

We continue saying “I will do that later” or “I will finish tomorrow” and this later/tomorrow never really comes.

Just do it right after you wake up or within 1-2 hours after waking up. That way you are sure that you won’t procrastinate during the day. It also helps in increasing your self-confidence.

When you say that “I will do this,” and you really do it, you send a subconscious signal to your mind that you are a person who keeps their promises. Someone who is reliable. This results in feeling more confident with yourself.

5. Split your work with the 25-5 method.

This method can be a part of the Hermit Mode and boost your concentration to the maximum.

The idea is that you split your work into two parts. The first part is 25 minutes of uninterrupted work. The second part is a 5-7 minute break for water, snack or just for flexing your muscles and walking around.

Use a timer with an alarm clock that reminds you when your 25 minute work period or your 5 minute break is over.

This is very effective if you plan on entering the hermit mode for very long periods, like 4+ hours. Even for 2 hours it can be very effective, because your brain will get tired after a while.

On the one hand, knowing that you have to be fully concentrated until your alarm rings makes you become ultra-productive and you get more work done. On the other hand, you have 5 minutes to give your brain enough time to relax but without relaxing too much.

Don’t make the mistake of logging into social media or answering your phone during your breaks because it can turn your 5 minute break into a 50 minute one. 

6. Listen to Audio books or Podcasts While You Are Eating.

Your meals are a perfect chance to supply your body with essential nutrients and become a little smarter simultaneously.

While most people spend their meals watching TV or just staring at their kitchen wall, you can differentiate yourself from the thought-castrated masses and use that time to educate yourself.

Of course, if you choose a book/podcast that you don’t like just because I told you to do so, it won’t work. Find something that you love to learn.

You have countless topics that you could choose from like:

  • How to improve your self-confidence.
  • How to lose fat effectively.
  • How to meet beautiful women.
  • How to build muscle.
  • How to improve your memory.
  • How to make money.

and much more.

You don’t have to start listening to audio books of Nietzsche or Freud from the beginning. Find something that you want to learn, something that would be enjoyable and could improve your life.

But you may be wondering: is listening to audio books going to make me smarter? Does it have the same effect like reading a real book? It seems that it depends on the subject of the book but generally it has the same effect. A study on college students in 1997 found that those who listened to a short story could write a summary as well as those who read it.

Advertising

7. Use Dead Time to Read or Learn Something New

When it comes to productivity and accomplishing your goals you must learn new things constantly.

It’s impossible to achieve a goal if you are not improving yourself. If you are not taking a step closer to that goal every single day then it won’t work.

You might say that you don’t have enough time. But the fact is that many of us have a lot of time that is wasted.

What did you do the last time you took the bus?

What did you do when you were waiting for a visit to your doctor while you were sitting on his comfortable couch?

What did you do when you took your car and went to work?

Most likely, you were just waiting the time to pass, you were scrolling your Facebook timeline, constantly checking your e-mail, listened to music or just staring out of the window.

But you were wasting time that you could use to learn something. Start reading e-books on your phone or listen to an audiobook/podcast during such “dead time.”

If you are on the bus and you have 30 minutes ahead of you, don’t let them pass away. Read a book and become a little smarter. If you are driving, then listen to an audio.

You can’t imagine the difference in your mindset after a year if you started to listen to audiobooks every day for 30 minutes while you are driving to your work.

Start now, you can find audiobooks or e-books for dirt cheap online. And you can listen to podcasts that are completely free.

8. Use the 3 Color Layer Checklist Method

That’s something I recommend in my e-book Beat Procrastination in 10 Minutes.

Traditional checklists are boring.  However, the 3-color layer checklist is more unique. It’s a great way to be more productive and get important tasks done all the time.

Why? Because you prioritize your tasks based on importance. All you need is a piece of  paper and 3 colored pens. I prefer using red-black-blue.

Then you split your work:

Level 1-Red: Top priority-Emergency work that must be done today.

Level 2-Black: Medium priority

Advertising

Level 3-Blue: Low Priority

When the day is over you must have done all tasks in the first 2 levels. But there is a rule: For every task on level-3 you must have two tasks on levels 1 & 2.

This ensures that you don’t put all the work in the low priority layer to avoid it.

For example, if you have two tasks on the blue layer, you must have two on black and two on red or 3 on red and 1 black. The ratio should be 2:1, Red & Black to Blue.

This system will allow you to become more focused by learning to identify and finish the important tasks first. You will always have the important work done and if you have time you can finish the low priority tasks as well.

9. Start Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent fasting will allow you to burn more fat while eating less and saving time. Actually you won’t eat less food but you will eat fewer meals.

That’s because you will skip your breakfast. While common wisdom says that you should eat a large bowl of cereal to “activate your metabolism” this doesn’t provide any benefits. Eating makes your body spend energy to digest the food.This is known as the Thermic Effect. However, increased meal frequency doesn’t add any benefit as the thermic effect in 24 hours remains the same if you eat the same amount of calories, no matter if you consume these calories in 3 or in 6 meals.[3]

The food industry has invested millions of dollars to convince us that breakfast is essential. Eat pancakes, muffins, milk, cake and cereals because your body will enter in starvation mode if you don’t. That’s what they told us and we believed it.

In fact, skipping breakfast not only helps you to burn more fat but it has other benefits like increased growth hormone and boosted mental alertness.

But what has this to do with productivity?

When you skip breakfast you eat only 2-3 meals per day. Lunch and dinner are fine, but you can have an extra smaller meal in between.

This saves you a lot of time from breakfast preparation and gives you the ability to enjoy huge meals without getting fat. Or eating a dessert (wink).

In reality, you take the breakfast calories and put them in your dinner or lunch.

Generally speaking, you shouldn’t only skip breakfast but you should also cut your meals quantity. There is no need in having 5-6 small meals per day “because this activates your metabolism.”

Whether your goal is building muscle, losing fat or maintaining your weight, it’s all a matter of how much calories you eat and if you get the right quantity of nutrients. You can achieve that only with 2-3 meals per day.

It will save you a ton of time from cooking, eating and even spending energy to digest the food.

What are your best methods to improve your productivity? I would love to hear to your ideas.

More by this author

Damian "Pros" Prosalendis

Entrepreneur, Business Owner

killer productivity lifehacks 9 Killer Productivity Lifehacks to Supercharge Your Success Rate starting your own business Why Starting An Online Business Online Is Easier Than You Think They Say Money Can’t Buy Happiness, It Can Buy Something More Important Though personal branding 8 Secrets People Good At Personal Branding Never Told You malcolm gladwell 39 Inspirational Quotes By Malcolm Gladwell That We Should Revisit Every Day

Trending in Productivity

1 7 Techniques to Stay Focused and Avoid Distractions 2 How to Set Short Term Goals for a Successful Life 3 10 Best Calendar Apps to Stay on Track in 2020 4 What Is a Habit? Understand It to Control It 100% 5 5 Key Traits of a Charismatic Leadership

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Last Updated on December 9, 2019

7 Techniques to Stay Focused and Avoid Distractions

7 Techniques to Stay Focused and Avoid Distractions

The world has become a very distracting place, you don’t need me to tell you that. Where once we could walk out of our house or office and disappear into our own world with our own thoughts, we are now connected 24 hours a day to a network that’s sole purpose is to make us available to anyone and everyone at any time they choose to disturb us.

Of course, it is very easy to sit here and say all you have to do is turn off your electronic devices and just allow yourself several hours of quiet solitude; but the reality is far harder than that. There is an expectation that we are available for anyone whenever they want us.

However, if you do want to elevate yourself and perform at your best every day, to produce work of a higher quality than anyone expects and to regain control over what you do and when you will need to regain some control over your time, so you can focus on producing work that matters to you…

The good news: You do not have to become a recluse. All you need are a few simple strategies that will allow you enough flexibility in your day to stay focused to do the work that matters and still allow you to deal with other people’s crises and dramas.

Here are 7 ways you can stay focused and be less distracted.

1. Find out When You Are at Your Most Focused

According to research, brilliantly documented by Daniel Pink in his latest book, When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing, our brains have a limited capacity to stay focused each day.[1]

From the moment we wake up to the time we turn in for the day, we are using up our brain’s limited energy resources and, depending on the time of day, we will be moving between strong concentration and low concentration.

This means that for most people, their optimum time for sustained concentration and focus will be soon after they wake up. For others, it could be later in the evening—a kind of second wind—but that is rare.

Advertising

Once you understand this, you can take time to learn when you are at your best and to protect that time on your calendar as much as possible. If you can, block it off and use that time for the work you need to do that requires the most concentration each day.

2. Get Comfortable Using ‘Do Not Disturb’ Mode

We have the ability to switch our electronic devices to do not disturb mode. Where all notifications are off and your phone or computer will not alert you to a new email or message.

Now after testing this function for a number of years, I can happily report that it does work.

When I sat down to write this article, I put all my electronic devices to do not disturb, closed down my email and began writing. I am safe in the knowledge that until this article is written, and I turn do not disturb off, there will be no interruptions or distractions.

Of course, it is not really about whether do not disturb works or not, it is whether you are willing to turn it on or not.

Most people believe they have to be constantly available for their boss or customers. This is not true at all. What has happened is because of your always available status, you have conditioned these people to turn to you first whenever they have a problem.

You are not actually helping them at all. You are preventing them from having to think for themselves and develop the skill of problem-solving. By not being so readily available, you help them a lot more.

What it comes down to is your boss and customers are going to be far more positive with you, if you deliver your work to the highest quality and on time than you being available 24/7. Trust me on that. I also tested that one.

Advertising

3. Schedule Focus Time Every Day

This technique is a lot easier than you may think.

First, you figure out when you are least likely to be disturbed. For me, that is between 6 and 9 am. for a lot of my clients, they find the first 90 minutes in the morning at their workplace is when they are not likely to be disturbed. This is important because you want to be building consistency.

Most people start their day by checking their email and other messages. While they are doing that, they are not going to be bothering you. Now there is no rule about when you should be checking your email. The chances are email is not going to be where you want to spend your most focused time, so you can decide to check your email at say 10:30 am.

Dedicate 30 minutes from 10:30 am to 11:00 am for email processing and use the first 90 minutes of your day for doing your most important work. You will surprise yourself by how much work you get done in that ninety minutes.

4. Plan Your Day the Night Before

One of the inevitabilities of life is there is always a plan for the day. The choice is whether the plan you have is a plan of your own making or not. If you don’t have a plan, then the day will take control of you. Other people’s priorities, urgencies and dramas will fill your day. As the late Jim Rohn said:

“Either you run the day or the day runs you.”

If you take control and make it a habit to plan out what you want to accomplish the next day before you go to bed, you will find yourself staying more focused on your work and be less likely disturbed.

Now when I say plan your day the night before, I do not mean you need to spend an hour or so planning and mapping out every minute of the day. Planning your day should only take you around 10 to 15 minutes and you only need to decide what 10 things you want to complete — 2 “must do” objective tasks and 8 “would like to do” tasks. What I call the 2+8 Prioritisation Technique:

Advertising

Do not be tempted to go beyond 10 tasks for the day. When you do that, you do not have enough flexibility in your day to handle crises and other unknown issues that will pop up throughout the day.

When you do not build in flexibility, you will soon stop planning your day. Only plan tasks that will have the biggest positive impact on your work and projects.

5. Learn to Say “No”

I am sure you’ve been told this before. We are wired to please and this results in us wanting to say yes to every opportunity that comes our way. The problem is we cannot do everything and every time you say “yes” to one opportunity, you are saying “no” to another opportunity. You cannot be in two places at the same time.

Jay Shetty shared an inspiring video on JOMO “Joy Of Missing Out”. Here’s the video:

Rather than allowing ourselves to be succumbed by FOMO (the Fear Of Missing Out), we should replace that ‘fear’ with the “joy” of missing out. Because of our need to please, we say yes to things we really don’t want to do; yet when we do that, we miss out on doing things that bring us joy—creating something special, spending time educating ourselves and just having some quiet alone time with ourselves.

Learn to say “no” every time you get a notification to your phone. Ignore it. Learn to say “no” to your colleagues when they want to gossip. Learn to say “no” to volunteering when the thing you are being asked to volunteer for does not excite you. Just learn to say “no”.

By saying “no” to opportunities, distractions and interruptions, you are saying yes to better and more meaningful things. Things you do want to focus your attention on.

6. Create a Distraction-Free Environment for Your Focused Time

This has been possibly the most powerful tip I learned when it comes to focusing on what is important. Have a place where you do only focused, high-concentration work.

Advertising

Now this place needs to be clean and only have the tools you need to do your work. If it is writing a report or preparing a presentation, then it needs a table and a computer, nothing more. Files, paper and other detritus that accumulates on and around people’s desks need to go. A clean, cool and well-lit environment is going to do a lot more for your focus and concentration than anything else.

The dining table in our home is where I go for undisturbed, focussed work. I take my laptop or iPad, and only have my writing app open. Everything is closed down and the computer is in “do not disturb” mode. There is nothing else on the dining table just my computer and my water tumbler.

Because that is my designated focus area, I only go there to work when I have something that needs total focus and concentration. I am there right now!

7. Be Intentional

The reality is, if you absolutely need to get something done then you need to be intentional. You have to have the intention of sitting down, focusing and doing the work.

There’s no magic tricks or apps that will miraculously do all your work for you. You need to intentionally set aside time for undisturbed focus work and do it. Without that intention, you can read as many of these articles as you like and you still will not get the work done.

It is only when you intentionally set yourself up to do the work, turn off all notifications and do whatever it takes to avoid distractions will the work get done.

The Bottom Line

The strategies and tips I shared in this post will go a long way to helping you become better at focusing on the important things in your life. No matter what they are, you are in control of your time and what you do with it and where you spend it, never give that control away to anyone else.

Protect it and it will be your servant. Give that control away and it will become your master and that is not a good place to be.

More About Staying Focused

Featured photo credit: Manny Pantoja via unsplash.com

Reference

Read Next