2017 Is going to be the year that big things happen for me. I can feel it in my bones! To make sure these big things happen though, I’m going to have to be very disciplined and a lot more productive than I’ve been in the past. This is no easy feat being the queen of R&R as well as someone who is easily distracted. So as a dedication to all my fellow procrastinators here are 5 tips and tools that I use to help me not get side tracked!
1. Loop Habit Tracker App
There are actually many free goal tracking apps out there but the one I’m currently using and am happy with is the Loop Habit Tracking App. Its a simple sleek design with no ugly ads. You simply enter things that you would like to make a habit and the app will remind you to do it. Once done you check it off. The app has a feature that lets you track your progress in graph format so that you can see how often in a month you actually followed through on your habits.
I ordered an agenda called the Passion Planner which I can’t wait to start using. I’m already using an agenda daily but I was really curious about these customized agendas that are geared towards achieving short and long term goals. You’ll see what I mean soon as I plan to do a post about the planner. But you don’t need a fancy planner to stay on track, a regular agenda can get the job done too. I know, I know “use a planner” may seem like really obvious advice for anyone who wants to stay productive, but sometimes the simple advice is the best. Besides you’d be surprised as to how many people I know who are disorganized, always late and forever playing catch up, who don’t use agendas so I felt it was worth a mention. Writing things down truly is the first step to getting sh*t done.
This may not be apparent but working out really does make you more productive in other areas of your life. The reason being that working out gets the blood flowing to the brain, making you more focused and alert to get more done in a day. Just think of it in terms of Newton’s law of inertia: A body in motion stays in motion! Likewise a body at rest stays at rest. ‘Workout’ doesn’t necessarily have to mean hitting the iron hard for two hours at the gym with the goal of looking like a ripped beast. It could simply mean getting outside and going for a jog, or even a brisk walk if that’s the level you’re at, or swimming or a Zumba class if that’s your thing. Whatever it is just get moving, get that blood flowing and get more done in your day then you would have had you not worked out.
StayFocusd is a Chrome extension that blocks time wasting sites, like Facebook for example, when you should be working on other things. It can even block you from using the internet completely for a set amount of time. I love the blurb used to describe what type of person can really benefit from using StayFocusd, it’s like it was written just for me:
‘You sit down at your computer, you swear you’ll be productive. Next thing you know, it’s twelve hours later. You’ve checked your email, updated your Facebook status, blown through 200 pages of Reddit, read every article in your Twitter feed, looked up your favorite band on Wikipedia, vanity googled yourself, cyber-stalked your ex, browsed through all of your high school crushes’ Facebook photos, and lost a week’s pay playing online poker.
What you haven’t done is WORK’
Okay, maybe I’m not as bad as the above description but I’m not far off. The point is why take more time to get the important stuff done because you’re too busy messing with mundane nonsense. Even if you think the other tabs you have open on your computer are important, chances are their not, you don’t need to answer every incoming Facebook message, nothing is that important. Get more done faster by being focused on the task at hand, multi-tasking ain’t all it’s cracked up to be.
Outsource as many tasks as you can afford to, especially if it’s something you aren’t particularly good at that would be really time consuming if you were to tackle the job yourself. I use Fiverr all the time for my website design and customization needs. For example I recently paid someone on Fiverr a nominal fee to switch my blog theme from Divi to Edge. In the past I would have tried to do the job myself and as a result spend two days in my pyjamas ripping my hair out trying to figure out what the heck I was doing. I’m not even joking, that’s how the customization of my first blog theme Divi went down, it wasn’t pretty. Not to mention in the end, despite getting most of it done myself I still had to get help from Fiverr freelancers. Now I just go straight to Fiverr if I can’t figure out the problem within a few minutes. It saves me so much time.
Fiverr is basically a marketplace where people sell their talents for $5 and up. Services offered range from designing logos, to website customization, to promotion of a product or service you have to offer, to weird stuff like tarot readings, a hot chick singing happy birthday to your friend or even prank calls. If you don’t know what Fiverr is I encourage you to check it out.
So there you have the tips and tools that I use to stay productive in my ever so distracting world. What are some of the things you do to stay productive?