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Super Boost Your Performance at Work in 6 Easy Steps

Super Boost Your Performance at Work in 6 Easy Steps

Many individuals may find that their work is slumping at work. This can be in the form of decreased quality of their product, multiple mistakes being made, or simply work not being performed as quickly as possible. In addition, low performance at work can also be tied to individuals who could be getting work completed, but are completely drained either by the middle of the day or near the end of it. Here are six ways in which you can boost your attitude and quality of work.

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    1. Chart your day

    The first step to increasing your performance at work is to have an idea of how your day will go, both in and out of your job. If you go about your day, simply based on instruction or the run of the day’s course, you will not only miss out on the important tasks that must get completed for the day, you’ll run around like a headless chicken while doing so. Before going to bed, make a to-do list of the tasks that have to get completed the next day. In the morning, review the list and make appropriate adjustments. Plan to do the more difficult takes in the beginning, so your day will progressively become easier. Make use of applications like Wunderlist to make task lists that can be complemented with notes, micro-tasks, and even multimedia.

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      2. Keep yourself updated

      There is a small scale and large scale component to doing this. Keeping yourself updated on the small scale involves continuing to ensure that you stay updated on current events. This allows you to become a well-rounded individual and more informed about what’s going on around you. When you awaken, have news pushed directly to your smartphone through push notifications, so that you can wake up informed.

      On a large scale, keeping yourself updated comes in the form of having your skills and tools continually contemporary. If you are in the tech industry, this involves ensuring that you are on top of the latest iterations in the programming language you know, or possibly picking up new ones. Even in a non-technical industry, learning how to do something as simple as making dynamic Microsoft Office documents can set you apart from the pack.

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        3. Maintain a healthy and active lifestyle

        Focusing on your health will allow you to gain a positive attitude about the work that you are doing. Sleep is directly related to your health, and so it is important to ensure that you get between seven to eight hours of sleep every night. Once your sleep is taken care of, the next aspect of a healthy lifestyle is what goes into your body.

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        Start by having a healthy breakfast that includes a good amount of protein, natural sugars, less caffeine and more of natural energy boosters. While it is true that coffee does boost energy, it only does so temporarily, and the period after it wears off is worse than before consumption. Also consider joining a gym or partaking regularly in active workouts and activities, like biking or jogging. Doing so can boost your energy for the day, although doing it in the middle of the day could be an even better to get through the work day past that afternoon slump.

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          4. Use the Pomodoro technique

          The Pomodoro technique involves making a list of the tasks that have to get done, setting your first timer for 25 minutes, and completing the first task in the allotted time. You can, of course, adjust based on the difficulty or the amount of time required. Then, take a short five minute break. This isn’t enough time to leave your desk, but at least time to move your eyes from the screen for rest.

          Then, get to work on task number two. After task number four, increase your break from five minutes to 15 minutes. Use this as a time to get a snack, briskly walk around the office, or chat with a co-worker. This can be difficult to remember all the steps for, so there are various applications on the market to help out, including Focus Time, or Simple Pomodoro Timer for those looking for a free option.

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            5. Plan for distractions

            It is true that encountering distractions is going to be inevitable. However, what differentiates those affected by distractions and those who are not is being able to plan for them and even welcome them at the right time. For example, use your breaks charted in the Pomodoro technique as a time to have your door open for individuals to come and ask questions or alert you of important news.

            Without the technique or without planning for distractions, you’d normally divert your attention to that distraction. However, I recommend taking note of the task they are speaking of and adding it to your to-do list. This will allow you to get to it in your own time and you can also alert them of tasks and points you have for them to accomplish during this time.

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              6. Know your cut-off point

              The last bit of advice for boosting your performance at work is to know when it’s time for you to stop working. If you are a freelancer or work from home, it’ll be easier to give yourself working hours and sticking to them. If you work in an office, these hours should be the times you are scheduled by your company to work (9 to 5, for example). By sticking strictly to these times, you are more likely to focus on your tasks to have them completed in time, and you are less likely to work late into the night, where the quality of your work decreases.

              Let us know in the comments below how you go about ensuring that your work performance stays optimal.

              Featured photo credit: new office 1/Fiksu via fiksu.com

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              Last Updated on November 19, 2019

              Work Smarter, Not Harder: 12 Ways to Work Smart

              Work Smarter, Not Harder: 12 Ways to Work Smart

              I imagine that like me, you say that you never have enough time and that you just cannot cope with 60 dozen things all at once.

              How on earth do you get out of that spiral?

              Many people never sit down and look at how to work smarter, rather than harder and even longer hours. But not you, you’re smart enough to try to learn effective ways to work.

              So how to work smarter not harder? Here are 12 smart ways you should be following:

              1. Improve Your Time Management Skills

              Easier said than done? Well, no actually, because there are a few simple rules that can really help you to manage time better.

              For example, when setting up a top priority task, you need to switch off the phone and ignore your email first. Then you need to abandon any ideas of multitasking as that will slow you down and ruin your focus.

              Finally, set a reasonable deadline and do everything in your power to meet it.

              “When you’re born, you’re born with 30,000 days. That’s it. The best strategic planning I can give to you is to think about that.” — Sir Ray Avery

              2. Speed up Your Typing and Use Shortcuts

              These days we’re all keyboard slaves. So why not speed up your typing and try to get rid of the two finger syndrome. In fact, when you save 21 days per year just by typing fast!

              This is exactly what I am doing now, so I cannot honestly say I am practicing what I preach!

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              But help is at hand. Try some of these apps and games to help you type fast: 8 Most Effective Games and Apps to Learn to Type Fast

              Using shortcuts on the keyboard is another time saver and can speed up your work.

              For example, press F2 to rename a selected file, while CTRL + I will put selected text in italics.

              There are so many of these. If you make the effort to learn them, they really can be helpful.

              3. Learn How to Use Productivity Tools

              It is well worth downloading all the useful tools and apps that can highly boost your productivity. Take a look at these 18 Best Time Management Apps and Tools and install whatever fits your needs.

              Now that is really a great way of working smarter, not harder.

              4. Use Your Phone Wisely

              Instead of writing emails, sometimes it’s better to pick up the phone and talk to the person responsible. It saves time, especially for important or urgent discussions.

              If that colleague works in the same office, it is even better to go and talk to him or her. It gives you a break, you get some exercise and you actually make human contact which is becoming quite rare in this electronic world.

              5. Keep a Tab on Your Tabs

              If you are like me, you might well find that you have a ton of tabs open at the top of your browser.

              In order to find the one you want, you have to search for them as they are off screen. Having all these tabs open slows down your browser too.

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              One solution is to use OneTab which can keep a neat list on the screen of all these tabs when you want to quickly get to one of them or you want to remind yourself which ones you have open.

              6. Use a “To Don’t” List

              We all know about to do lists and I find that they are generally great. They give me a great sense of achievement as I cross off the tasks done.

              But often, I find that we are doing non-essential tasks or ones that can easily be postponed. That is why many people recommend the to don’t list.[1]

              Some people prefer to savagely prune the to do list while others prefer to have two separate lists, to do and to don’t. You just have to work out what works best for you when you are trying to save precious time to become more productive.

              7. Expect Failure and Fight Paranoia

              When failure rears its ugly head, some people get a bit paranoid and fear that this may become a trend.

              Projects will go wrong and failure should be expected rather than feared. Learning lessons from failure and analyzing what went wrong is the best way forward.

              “Do not be embarrassed by your failures, learn from them and start again.” — Richard Branson

              And here you can find 10 Great Lessons Highly Successful People Have Learned From Failure.

              8. Be Concise

              Rambling on at meetings, in emails and even when introducing yourself to new clients can waste a lot of people’s time.

              One way is to practice and sharpen your “elevator speech,”[2] which tells people in 30 seconds or less why they need your skills and how they can benefit from doing business with you.

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              Just think of the many situations where this could be useful:

              • Making new contacts
              • Talking about yourself at a job interview
              • Meeting people at conferences or parties
              • Phone calls to new clients

              9. Ask the Right Questions

              “You can tell whether a man is clever by his answers. You can tell whether a man is wise by his questions.” — Naguib Mahfouz

              How do you get feedback? The secret is to ask the right questions at the right time.

              When you do this, you are gathering the information you need to help in decision making. This will save you time and you will be able to cut meetings to a minimum.

              Forbes magazine reports on research that they carried out on asking the right questions.[3] When that happens, the positive effects are increased by 400%. There are also other benefits in staff motivation and a positive impact on the company’s bottom line.

              Lifehack’s CEO Leon has shared about how to ask for feedback to learn faster: How to Learn Quickly And Master Any Skill You Want

              10. Learn as Much as You Can

              You should always be on a steep learning curve. Look at your skills profile and determine where you need to fill a gap. Talk to important connections and network in your niche.

              Keep up to date on trends and developments. It is a fact-changing world. When an opportunity arises, you will be the best equipped to seize it because you have never stopped learning. Just another way of working smarter.

              “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” — Mahatma Gandhi

              11. Look After Your Greatest Resource

              No, your greatest resource is not time. It is YOU.

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              If you do not get enough sleep, exercise and relaxation, you find that you become less and less productive. You begin to work longer and longer hours, which is the exact opposite of what you want.

              What you should be doing is making sure you are in the best shape. It is useful to remember that you need a break of 15 minutes after every one and a half hours of work.[4]

              Taking breaks and getting fresh air and exercise is one of the best ways of working smarter, not harder.

              12. Don’t Fall into the Trap of Working Smarter and Harder

              As a society, we are obsessed with doing everything smarter so we are more efficient and we save time all around.[5]

              But the most important thing to remember is to accept when we are ready to switch off that computer and not fill up the time with even more work!

              The Bottom Line

              The key to greater productivity is to work smarter, not harder. Working smarter saves precious time and energy for the things that really matter — your life goals, your personal growth, your health and your relationships.

              Stop working for more hours and start working smarter!

              More About Working Smart

              Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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