By: Katherine Muniz Jan 25, 2017

10 Small Ways to Turn the Page to a More Productive 2017

Whether you want to be more productive at work, at home, or in your personal life, making small changes and adopting positive habits can help you live a more efficient and productive life. Here are ten ways you can turn the page to a more productive 2017.

1. Start small – Instead of dooming yourself to failure with unrealistic goals, focus on bettering yourself in small ways. 42.4 percent of those who make New Year’s Resolutions never succeed and fail on their resolution each year. By consciously embracing better choices, habits start to form, and consistent habits drives measurable, long-term change. 

2. Eliminate distractions – According to one study, when people pause working on a task, it takes 23 minutes and 15 seconds before they get back to the original task. Resist the urge to get sidetracked and focus on completing projects under a self-imposed deadline. 

3. Sleep more – Nearly a third of American workers are sleep-deprived. If you’re one of those people, you know how miserable it is trying to get through the day when you’re tired. According to WebMD, previous studies have linked insufficient sleep to depression, a weaker immune system, and memory issues. The key takeaway is that a good night’s rest is crucial to being productive. 

4. Stop multitasking – Multitasking doesn’t make you any more efficient or productive. Instead, studies show that multitasking, or switching back and forth between several activities, increases the energy needed to focus on completing one project effectively. You might be surprised at how hard it can be to concentrate on one thing at a time, but it’s a skill worth developing.

5. Automate tasks whenever possible – Modern technology makes ticking off tasks more convenient then ever. From auto paying your bills to auto running your payroll (like with FingerCheck360), there are plenty of time-saving ways to put your life on automatic. 

6. Take advantage of your commute time – According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the average travel time to work in the United States is 25.4 minutes. While this may not seem like much, a lot can get done in half an hour. Instead of playing games on your phone, use that time to knock out short tasks, like replying to emails, creating a daily to-do list, or even listening to audiobooks.

7. Just start – The key to being more productive may be as simple as just starting. Instead of opening emails and submerging yourself within the deep vortex of the internet, focus on starting the work you’re responsible for completing. When you feel mentally fatigued, take a short break during which you can allow yourself to pursue leisurely activities. 

8. Work with a sense of urgency – The service industry often requires that employees work with a sense of urgency in order to assist customers as quickly as possible. Developing a sense of urgency in the way you work, regardless of industry, can help you be more productive. If you can channel this mentality, and work more efficiently, your dedication and commitment could earn you a position with greater responsibility. 

9. Take a break when you feel mentally fatigued – Research shows that burning the midnight oil and working break-free doesn’t actually make you more productive. According to the Division of Sleep Medicine at the Harvard Medical School, working in long stretches without breaks impair your ability to focus and access to higher-level brain functions for days. Try taking a fifteen-minute break a couple of times during the day.

10. Eat better – As the saying goes, you are what you eat. Consider incorporating these fifty super healthy foods into your diet. Opting for takeout in the middle of a work day may sound like a wonderful idea, but it will most likely make you incredibly sleepy and lethargic. Instead of going for fast food, try to incorporate some healthy options at least a few times a week. 

We’re all familiar with the feeling of making a goal, only to let ourselves slip back to our old habits weeks later. Instead of vowing to completely reinvent yourself this year, take a more realistic approach. Start with these ten actionable steps to being more productive.

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Category: HR

Katherine is a New York-based digital writer who joined Fingercheck in 2015. She promotes Fingercheck through the power of the written word. She graduated from Fordham University with a B.A. in Communications and Media Studies with a focus on Journalism. Connect with her on LinkedIn

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