Advertising
Advertising

8 Clever Ways to Level up Productivity in Your Office

8 Clever Ways to Level up Productivity in Your Office

With so many distractions, it’s not a mystery why we’re not getting any work done. It’s more than easy to get seduced by the internet (naughty little devil) and forget all about your tasks, just because you found something interesting and went down the information rabbit hole.

My office is quite dynamic and there’s always something interesting (or dramatic, possibly) going on and it can be really hard to for me to maintain my focus and stay productive throughout the whole day. Once I realized I’m not getting any work done, I decided to do some experimenting of my own and see what works for me.

1. Help!

img01
     Image source

    Don’t hesitate from reaching out. If you’re anything like me, you’re capable of spending hours trying to learn how to do a bit of work that the rest of your task depends on without asking for advice. Being stubborn, or persistent as I like to call it, can be good on occasion, but not in this particular one.

    The chances are at least one of your colleagues had experience with a problem you’re trying to deal with, and if they don’t seem to be able to help you figure it out they can point you in the right direction and give you a base to work on. Swallow your unreasonable pride and communicate with your office – that’s what the teamwork is all about.

    Advertising

    2. Getting Nowhere? Move on

    Creative jobs can be particularly troubling, especially on those gray days when you can’t find anything to be inspired by. If you continue to bang your head over one single problem for a while, it will create even more obstacles for you to solve.

    Frustrations like this make the whole thing worse – you end up doubting your skills. In order to avoid this blockade, you should simply move on to the next task unrelated to the problematic one if possible. This way, you’ll give your mind enough time to work without you pressuring it to come up with a solution and you’ll get there in time.

    3. Be a Busy Bee

    The very moment you catch yourself doing nothing productive, find something to do – anything that can benefit your overall performance. Procrastination is one deep abyss and you shouldn’t allow yourself to get anywhere near it because it’s really hard to get out of it.

    Therefore, don’t lose time on meetings that are irrelevant to your area of business, make sure you’re keeping up with your schedule and keep track of time – and this is very important – because it can get away from you without you even realizing before it’s too late.

    Advertising

    4. Listen to Your Body

    img02
      Image Source

      Let’s be honest – you can’t expect your mind to be capable if your body is yelling for nutrients – this is one snooze button you shouldn’t press (this is quite ironic coming from me because I really enjoy my beauty sleep).

      Many people are prone to energizing drinks and junk food because they believe it’s a way to intake a lot of energy for a short period of time. This isn’t healthy, which is why it’s not a solution. Traditional wake-up drinks like coffee work just fine for me, although there was a time when I had to cut back for a bit because I was exaggerating, to be frank.

      If calories are your concern here, you should read up on the subject – the numbers are fairly insignificant and you shouldn’t be bothered by them at all.

      5. Move Those Muscles

      A great way to make your mind work a bit faster is to move your body. Simple exercises like squats will get your blood going faster and help your mind become significantly more productive. The secretion of happy hormones that your glands produce while you workout will make your body more healthy and yourself more useful, and you don’t have to do them for everyone to see – a bathroom or lunch break will do here.

      Advertising

      6. Challenge Your Mind

      img03
        Image Souce

        I already mentioned how troubling lack of inspiration can be, and if you don’t seem to be able to start your engine in the morning, you shouldn’t consider the whole day lost. What you should do is take the matter into your own capable hands and light up your brain with an intellectual challenge such as Sudoku or a quick mind puzzle. There’s a bunch of these games online and you’ll be able to find the one that works great for you.

        7. Don’t Go Nowhere Near Social Networks

        Entering Facebook just to check something that won’t take more than a minute or two is one nasty lie you tell yourself and you know it. It won’t take less than fifteen minutes and that’s the best version – we all know how easy it is to get distracted, so this is a huge no-no.

        It’s not just Facebook but other social platforms as well, so my sincere suggestion is to steer clear of them. Check your messages (email included) while you’re taking a break; this way you won’t miss anything and you’ll stay disciplined simultaneously.

        Advertising

        8. Aesthetics is Helpful

        Instead of looking at a blank wall in front of you every time you have a blockade of any type, you should do something nice for yourself and decorate your desk with something you like – a family photo, a nice plant, a dear ornament, or something that’s just pretty to look at. Your office and aesthetics around you have a major impact on your performance and you should do something about it.

        The best thing for your productivity would be to try each of these eight things I have listed so you can test them all in order to find the one (or a couple of them) which works best for you. Professional stagnation will eventually lead to you going backward and this isn’t something you should make room for in your career – the sooner you deal with it, the sooner you will keep moving forward.

        Featured photo credit: great-action.com via great-action.com

        More by this author

        Being Asked a Tricky Interview Question? Give These Skillful Responses to Earn Extra Time 6 Useful Gadgets Every Proud Workaholic Should Own How Not to Get Ripped Off When Buying Your First Car How to Show Affection without Looking Needy or Being Clingy When Things Get Serious: How to Go from “Single” to “In a Relationship”

        Trending in Brain

        1 5 Proven Memorization Techniques to Make the Most of Your Memory 2 Are You Right-Brain Dominant? (7 Right Brain Characteristics) 3 17 Ways To Develop a Growth Mindset 4 7 Simple Brain Training Habits to Boost Your Brain Power 5 How to Increase Brain Power, Boost Memory and Become 10X Smarter

        Read Next

        Advertising
        Advertising
        Advertising

        Last Updated on January 21, 2020

        5 Proven Memorization Techniques to Make the Most of Your Memory

        5 Proven Memorization Techniques to Make the Most of Your Memory

        Do you forget stuff every now and then? Are you trying to enhance your memory but not sure how?

        All you need is the right memorization techniques to make the most of your memory.

        The human brain is fascinating. More specifically, the vast interconnections within our mind. Mendel Kaelen compares the human brain to a hill covered in snow,

        “Think of the brain as a hill covered in snow, and thoughts as sleds gliding down that hill. As one sled after another goes down the hill a small number of main trails will appear in the snow. And every time a new sled goes down, it will be drawn into preexisting trails, almost like a magnet. In time it becomes more and more difficulty to glide down the hill on any other path or in a different direction.”

        The intent of Kaelen’s discussion is to think of new ways to temporarily flatten the snow. Kaelen remarked,

        “The deeply worn trails disappear, and suddenly the sled can go in other directions, exploring new landscapes and, literally, creating new pathways.”

        The idea here is to temporarily rewire your brain, or as Michael Pollan remarked in How to Change Your Mind,

        “The power to shake the snow globe, disrupting unhealthy patterns of thought and creating a space of flexibility-entropy-in which more salubrious patterns and narratives have an opportunity to coalesce as the snow slowly settles.”

        So, how can we rewire our brain allowing deeply worn connections to disappear and new connections to form? The answer is quite simple. We must change the way we store information in our mind.

          Let’s examine 5 specific memorization techniques that will change the way you think and remember information.

          1. Build a Memory Palace

            What is it?

            The method of loci[1] (aka memory palace) is a method of memory enhancement using visualizations with the use of spatial memory. It uses familiar information about your environment to quickly recall information. It is a method that was discussed by Cicero in an ancient dialogue called De Oratore.

            How to use it?

            Ron White discusses in How to Memorize Fast and Easily: Build a Memory Palace, that it’s essentially a room or building that you have memorized and you use locations in the room to store data. Ron informs us,

            “You memorize locations in a room and then you later go back to those locations to retrieve the data that you want to remember.”

            Example

            An easy 5-step example, in the form of a Wiki, can be found at Artofmemory.com. Let’s examine the the steps:

            • Step 1. Choose a place that you know well. For example, your house or office.
            • Step 2. Plan the route and pick specific locations in your route. For example, your front door, bathroom kitchen, etc.
            • Step 3. Decide what you want to memorize. For example, geography, list of items, answers for a test, etc.
            • Step 4. Place one or two items, with a mental image, and place them in your memory palace. Exaggerate your images. For example, use nudity or crazy images forcing it to stick in your mind.
            • Step 5. Make the image into a mnemonic.

            You can learn more about this technique here: How to Build a Memory Palace to Remember More of Everything

            2. Mnemonic

              What is it?

              A mnemonic is a memory device that aids in retention and/or retrieval of information. Mnemonic systems are techniques consciously used to improve memory by helping us use information already stored in long-term memory to make memorization easier.[2]

              How to use it?

              Mnemonics make use of retrieval cues to encode information in our brain allowing for efficient storage and retrieval of the information. The trick is to learn how to easily create mnemonics. If you find that you struggle with creating your own, try the following website: Mnemonic Generator.

              Example

              I recently came across a video using mnemonics to memorize countries. Memorizing Countries using Mnemonics is a video created as an introduction to a class for using memory techniques to learn the names of countries on maps.

              I actively search for videos that provide enormous educational value, yet receive very little exposure. At the time of this writing, this video has received less than 4k views. Let’s examine the video.

              Goal: Create a mnemonic to memorize the countries in the Caribbean (just the countries you need to learn).

              Step 1. Looking at a map – write out each country (for which five were chosen).

              Cuba, Jamaica, Haiti, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico.

              Step 2. Write the first letter of each country vertically.

              C

              J

              H

              D

              Advertising

              P

              Step 3. Create a sentence or phrase.

              Cubs

              Just

              Hate

              Doing

              Push-ups

              Cubs just hate doing push-ups. (Cuba Jamaica Haiti Dominican Republic Puerto Rico)

              3. Mnemonic Peg System

                What is it?

                According to Artofmemory.com, a mnemonic peg system is a technique for memorizing lists and it works by memorizing a list of words that are easy to associate with the numbers they represent.[3] These objects are the pegs of the system.

                How to use it?

                The trick is to create a Number Rhyme System with each number having a rhyming mnemonic keyword.

                Example

                Let’s look at an example of a Number Rhyme System:[4]

                0 = hero

                1 = gun

                2 = shoe

                Advertising

                3 = tree

                4 = door

                5 = hive

                6 = sticks

                7 = heaven

                8 = gate

                9 = line

                Another technique like the Peg system is the Number Shape System.[5] Here you are assigning mnemonic images based on the shape of the number. Watch the following video for an example of this system: Number Shape System for Memorizing Numbers.

                4. Chunking

                  What is it?

                  Chunking is a way to remember large bits of information by chunking them into smaller pieces of information. We are more likely to then remember the information when we put the small pieces back together to see the entire picture.

                  How to use it?

                  In the video Chunking – A Learning Technique, we can see that there are several ways to chunk information.

                  Example

                  Let’s examine a simple example using a nine-digit number.

                  Step 1. What is the number you are trying to remember?

                  081127882

                  Step 2. Cut the number into smaller pieces through chunking.

                  Advertising

                  081 – 127 – 882

                  Let’s look at one more example from the same video.

                  “Piano teachers will first demonstrate an entire song to students. They will then ask their students to practice one measure at a time. Once the part has been learned and the neural connections in the brain have been built, then students go on to the next measure. After all chunks have been played separately, they are combined until the entire piece is connected.”

                  5. Transfer of Learning

                    What is it?

                    Transfer of learning is a way to learn something in one area and apply it in another. Authors of Thinking at Every Desk, Derek and Laura Cabrera inform us about the transfer of learning,

                    “If a student has a high transfer skills, she can learn one thing and then teach herself 10, 50, or 100 additional things.”

                    How to use it?

                    There are two specific ways to use it:

                    1. Vertical Transfer (aka Far Transfer). Think of learning something in grade school and applying it another grade or later in life.
                    2. Horizontal Transfer (aka Near Transfer). Think of learning a concept in history and applying it in math.

                    Example

                    I provide a detailed step-by-step example for this technique in this article:

                    Learn How to Learn: How to Understand and Connect Difficult Ideas Easily

                    The Bottom Line

                    The key to using the techniques discussed here is to remember that we must actively think about information.

                    We cannot simply drill information into our brain through rote memorization. We must change the way we think about memorization. We must find a way to “shake the snow-globe” in our mind or flatten the snow so that we can create new learning paths.

                    Or as Derek and Laura Cabrera point out, we must insert “Thinking” into the equation,

                    “Information X Thinking = Knowledge”

                    More About Enhancing Memories

                    Featured photo credit: Nong Vang via unsplash.com

                    Reference

                    [1] Remember Everything: Memory Palaces and the Method of Loci
                    [2] The Learning Center Exchange: 9 Types of Mnemonics for Better Memory
                    [3] Art of Memory: Mnemonic Peg System
                    [4] Art of Memory: Number Rhyme System
                    [5] Art of Memory: Number Shape System

                    Read Next