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Improve Your Home Office Productivity With These 4 Timeless Quotes

Improve Your Home Office Productivity With These 4 Timeless Quotes
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Quotes are a wonderful way to get inspiration for your day. At the same time, they provide us wisdom in a very compact form.

When it comes to productivity, there are lots of great quotes related to that topic. Although they play a very important role when inspiring and motivating us, the true value comes when you apply the wisdom in your real life.

Enter your home office.

You know that you’d like to be more productive in that environment, but you don’t know how. If this is the case, then these quotes and the steps for applying them are for you.

Enjoy this wisdom and make sure to put the advice into action.

1. “If you eat a frog first thing in the morning, the rest of your day will be wonderful.”

~Mark Twain

    Do you have a difficult task that you seem to be putting off: Is it calling to clients or sending an e-mail to your customers?

    Whatever the task is, you are not alone, since we all have those kinds of “frogs” on our list. However, some people take care of those tasks as soon as possible while some people postpone them until they are forced to do it.

    Would you like to belong to the first group of people?

    How to:

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    When you eat the frog first thing in the morning, your day goes much smoother than if you were to postpone the task until later part of the day.

    In my situation, I deal with a task like this in 3 steps.

    First, I’ll just make a decision to take care of the task as soon as possible. Sometimes I’ll decide to do the task next day first thing. This way I have more time to prepare for it mentally.

    Then, I set the exact time when I will call that person or send that e-mail. This happens by marking the task in the calendar and also setting a reminder on my mobile phone. This way I don’t have any excuses, like forgetting it.

    Finally, I just get started with the task when the time is right. I take the first steps and then often I realize that I actually want to finish what I have just started.

    For instance, if it’s sending the e-mail, I start writing the message. After few lines of doing so, I want to finish the message at once and send it right away.

    Alternatively, if it’s a phone call, I prepare myself for the conversation by deciding what to say. In addition, I have a pen and paper (or other note taking equipment) ready, since I most likely have to write something down during the conversation.

    After I have “eaten the frog,” I feel much better since the task is now done and I don’t have to think about it anymore.

    2. To do two things at once is to do neither.

    ~Publius Syrus

      When you work on too many things at the same time, you are unable to focus properly on any of them, and thus you’re not making any real progress.

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      On the other hand, if you are putting your focus on the one thing at a time, you’ll notice that you are getting much more done that way.

      How to:

      Try to remember those times when you worked on two things at the same time: What was the end result? Did you have to go back to your tasks and fix the errors since you weren’t focusing enough?

      Now listen to this: Would you like to save time and get things done faster? If so, then single-tasking is the answer.

      If you’re working on your computer and creating content for your blog, then following Facebook or Twitter updates at the same time are out of the question (except if you need those sites for research purposes).

      Or, if you are preparing for the webinar presentation while talking to your wife, neither one will get your full attention.

      On the other hand, if you move to an environment which is distraction-free (from electronic or other type of distraction), you’ll realize that it’s much easier to focus on your stuff and get your work done.

      Finally, if your mind is running wild with ideas while you are doing the task, just write those thoughts down. Have a pen and paper with you while you work and “flush your mind” on a frequent basis so that it’s clear of internal “blabber.”

      Afterwards, you can take a look at the list and do the stuff that you have been writing on your notes.

      3. “The best thing to spend on your children is your time”

      ~Louise Hart

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        Your family is the most important thing you have. If you have children, make sure you spend enough time with them. This applies especially to the time when your children are small.

        How to:

        Make a decision to have a work schedule that you follow and let your children (and your spouse) to know about it.

        When you finish working, be with your children 100%: Don’t play around with your computer or do other stuff, just be fully present.

        Play with your kids, go outside for a walk, and just spend quality time with them. Be truly interested what your children have to say and become a good listener.

        You’ll realize that time will fly fast and your children will grow up quickly. That’s why you should spend more time with them when they are young.

        Do it now while you have the chance!

        4. “If you want to make good use of your time, you’ve got to know what’s most important and then give it all you’ve got.”

        ~Lee Iacocca

          Do you know what the most important part of your business is? Are you focusing on something that doesn’t really move you towards your goals?

          Whatever the case is, you need to figure out your essential tasks and focus on them 100%.

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          How to:

          Set aside some time – an hour or two – and really give your business some careful thought: Figure out what the core tasks are which bring you the most important results in your business.

          Then, list all of the tasks that you do on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis and figure out the ones to get rid of, the ones to delegate, or the ones to automate.

          If possible, hire a coach who can lend an outsider’s view to your business and who can tell you the strategies and tasks that you should be focusing on.

          For me, hiring a coach has been a game-changer, as I have been able to find the right things to concentrate on.

          Besides, having a person to whom I can pitch my ideas to has been very valuable, since he has been able to shoot down my crazy ideas (not all, but some of them), which would have otherwise taken me off track.

          When you know your overall direction, it’s much easier to put 100% on the right tasks – on a daily basis.

          In Conclusion

          Quotes are a great way of giving you more inspiration and motivation for your day.

          At the same time, the true power of them is revealed when you put them into practice.

          Make sure to take at least one of these quotes and implement it into your daily life. That way your home office productivity gets a boost and you will feel more confident in reaching your goals.

          Featured photo credit:  Young beautiful woman with white laptop in luxury room via Shutterstock

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          More by this author

          Timo Kiander

          Productivity Author and Founder of Productive Superdad

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          Last Updated on July 21, 2021

          The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

          The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)
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          No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

          Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

          Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

          A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

          Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

          In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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          From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

          A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

          For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

          This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

          The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

          That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

          Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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          The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

          Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

          But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

          The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

          The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

          A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

          For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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          But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

          If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

          For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

          These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

          For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

          How to Make a Reminder Works for You

          Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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          Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

          Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

          My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

          Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

          I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

          More on Building Habits

          Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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          Reference

          [1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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