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With your Bartercard business, life can get fairly hectic. Maybe it doesn’t feel as productive as it could be. Some people aren’t morning people it’s understandable. Or perhaps the sheer volume of tasks to do seems almost overwhelming.

Apart from coffee, what is your morning routine when you start work on your business from either your desk at home or out in the workplace? For most, the first task to complete is checking or sending emails, which sounds perfectly sensible – but what if it wasn’t?

The challenge of answering emails first and foremost is that it can create a reactive mindset, hijacking our focus, where the priorities of others become the center of attention.

Instead, Dr. Ron Friedman (award-winning social psychologist and bestseller on increasing workplace effectiveness) suggests you complete 3 other tasks before you begin your actual work.

These surprising, yet simple suggestions from Friedman combine science and research, reminding us of the superior results we can achieve by deliberately taking time out to plan – before we begin a task.

Would you like to know more and try it out for yourself? Here’s how:

It all starts with a planning session.

Preparing for what is to come is important. You need to distinguish between what is urgent and what feels urgent. This will enable you to determine the tasks you need to focus your attention on firstly.

From the very moment you sit down you should ask yourself this – “When the day is over, and I’m leaving here with a sense of accomplishment, what have I achieved?”

Productivity – The TO DO LIST

  1. Begin by creating a plan of attack. Break down any complex tasks into specific actions.
  2. What are your goals? Break down the goals into specific, smaller actions that begin with a verb (action word). Why? These small specific actions make it very clear what your intentions are.

Eg. Make A Sales Call. This goal becomes more focused by listing the required actions

  • Research the prospect company
  • Schedule a phone meeting with the contact
  • Clear my schedule and commit to a call location for the phone meeting

Research has indicated that being specific about goals and the tasks required, increases successful outcomes. Also having the required steps mapped out in advance reduces the need for additional thinking later in the day and lessens the likelihood of procrastination.

  1. Priorities – what are they? Begin the day with the tasks that require the most mental energy. As the day continues, most of us find our willpower and focus become less effective. So begin early while your mind is agile.

Circadian rhythms influence sleep-wake cycles, hormone release, body temperature, and other important bodily functions. These impact our alertness and productivity. Rather like most people you’ll be more productive earlier, between  9:00-11.00am, but not so much mid-afternoon – so Dr. Friedman suggests leaving the easy, repetitive and fun tasks to later in the day.

Have you now finished your To Do List? In less than 10 minutes you should have completed the entire exercise and set yourself up for a significant increase in productivity.

When you start every morning with these 3 step mini-productivity sessions, you’ll be more effective at prioritizing while your mind is fresh and have a list of specific, easy action items (rather than a broader list of goals) to follow and complete.

So when you next wake, remember to put your email on hold and firstly take control of your tasks to do.

Be more effective, be more productive and seize the day!

Bartercard New Zealand

Author Bartercard New Zealand

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