Women at Work: 5 Productivity Tips + Tricks You Need Now
Is anyone else a productivity junkie? I'm always looking for ways to work smarter (and, sometimes, harder), and I love the idea of apps or little life hacks that make your work even more productive than it already is.
Here are just a few of my favorite productivity tips + tricks:
1. Turn off push notifications.
Sounds crazy, right? Like you could never live without push notifications? Trust me, you can. I recently did a full "Notifications" audit and went through every app in my phone and inspected the notifications I receive from each.
I talked a bit more about it here, but it's one of the best things I've done! Now, I only receive notifications from my must-have apps—like Messages and Phone, for example. All of those other pesky notifications—i.e. every single Instagram like and all of the News alerts (that just stress me out anyway)—are gone, and instead, I actually open each app at the end of the day to find out what I missed.
2. Use Asana.
I don't know if I could live without Asana. It's kind of like Grand Central Station for all of my lists and ideas. I create different "Projects" for different areas of my life, and then within each, I house a million different tasks. It's the only "To Do List" app I've ever found that works for me and actually helps keep me WAY more organized—and, the feeling of checking something off in the app is very dramatic and helps me feel like I did a job well done.
3. Check your email less.
A lot of people let their inbox interrupt their life all. damn. day. But the most productive people actually schedule time for their emails, and then the rest of their day is devoted to actually getting work done—what a concept!
I know some people work in jobs where this just isn't feasible, but hear me out. What if you checked your email first thing in the morning when you get to the office. Spend 30 minutes to an hour clearing out your inbox and adding new tasks to your To Do List (that's perfectly organized in Asana!). Then, completely close your inbox tab. Move onto a project that's on your perfectly prioritized To Do List.
After lunch, try opening up your Inbox again, and clearing anything out from the past few hours. It might sound wild to not be in your inbox for a few hours, but I promise you—nothing that urgent is going to come in, and if it does, you can deal with it right after lunch. Once those messages are cleared, close your inbox again until the end of the day. Then, about 30 minutes before you're done working every day, open it up one last time to clear out any messages that came in that afternoon, and organize your To Do List for the next day.
This distraction-free time throughout the day away from emails (where you're actually able to work and accomplish things) might stress you out at first—but will be a welcome change, I promise.
4. Use Unroll.Me to clear out unwanted emails.
I don't know about you, but not much more stresses me out than a cluttered email inbox full of spam messages and feeling like I'm wasting time sifting through all of the junk. This happens in my personal inbox, in my blog inbox, and at work (yes, I juggle three emails at once—oy vey!). Use a tool like Unroll.Me to automatically remove all of the clutter from your life, so you can focus on the messages that matter most.
5. Take breaks every hour.
This was a hard one for me to learn, but is so very crucial. I used to sit at my desk for hours and crank through things, only to come up for air and realize I hadn't eaten, felt burnt out, needed to pee (lol), and was in desperate need of fresh air. Now, with my Apple Watch, I get reminders once an hour to move around. I use this time to get up and get some more water, take a bathroom break, walk somewhere to pick up lunch, or even just walk outside for a breath of fresh air. It's one notification I'm happy to get every hour because it reminds me to get active (and, in turn, leaves me more productive).
What are your best productivity tips? Let me know in the comments section!