Productivity Thoughts

One of my favorite topics to study and ponder is productivity…I love it.  Ironically, I tend to find myself spending time studying productivity instead of being productive but I digress.

This past week I came across a great little article from Inc.com titled 10 Simple Steps to Exceptional Daily Productivity BY JEFF HADEN. If you are looking to improve your own productivity habits or are a junky like myself, the article is a good read.

Here are my thoughts as I read the article and evaluted my own productivity style of late:

1. Every Sunday map out your week – when I do this it is great but I find it requires a great amount of disclipline…me, Sunday is a lazy day so this is a weekly battle.

2. Actively block out task time – great, great advice. Especially when working on a big project over several months.

3. Follow a realistic to-do list – key word is realistic…I am a repeat offender in creating unrealistic, impossible, pie in the sky to do lists.  Journaling this past year has helped me identify this pattern AND to live into #9.

4. Default to 30-minute meetings – I’ve got nothing.

5. Stop multitasking – this comes as a relief…just focus on one thing at a time. There is freedom in this simplicity.

6. Obsess over leveraging edge time – using your down time to create a productivity edge…cut out time wasters and add items that help you meet your goals.

7. Track your time – a real eye opener…either journaling or a variety of apps available online.  A side note: treat time like money…don’t spend $20 on a $5 task…which takes me back to #2.

8. Be thoughtful about lunch – again, time is one of our most precious commodities…make it work for you and be intentional.

9. Protect your family time – boundaries, discipline, etc…whatever you call it…make it happen.  Again, journaling helps to keep me honest in this regard…it’s very easy to fall into bad habits and working too long and hard is one of mine…especially with those ridiculous to-do lists.

10. Start every day right – the article focused on exercise and how it affects the whole day…which I wholeheartly agree.  I would, however, also like to add prayer.  I can be the most productive person on the planet but if I’m working on the wrong stuff, what good is it?  I’ve got to have the wisdom and discernment that can only come from the Holy Spirit.

Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good conduct let him show his works in the meekness of wisdom. 14 But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth. 15 This is not the wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic.16 For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice. 17 But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. 18 And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace. John 3:13-18

How about you?  What keeps you on track? Helps you accomplish your goals? Where are you on the productivity scale?

Donna Matthews is a blog writer at the DJRanch where she strives to remain authentic while not taking herself too seriously. She is also the creator of Slay The Chaos (www.slaythechaos.com), where she writes about productivity and organization. She is a member of The Writers Guild and Write Space in Houston and is currently writing her first book.
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