How to be More Productive at Work?

Work, is well, work, and no matter what you do for a living, you going to have days you going to feel like it’s a struggle to be productive at work. We spend, on average, forty hours a week at work, and if we don’t find ways to enjoy our work there is a good chance you won’t have the energy to maintain your productivity daily

For most of us, our pay depends on productivity so this is a key leverage point for success, and having a job that you don’t enjoy can increase stress, anxiety and lead to depression in the long term.

So, if you’re not having fun at work, it can be bad for your wallet and your health, thankfully there are ways to improve your productivity at work, here are eight things you can do today.

1. Take a Time Out

One of the best ways to improve your productivity and reduce stress is by taking a break. If you working at a desk all day, it can do wonders if you get up and take a walk around and breathe some fresh air and move your body. Why not take a walk during your break, not only is it good for your health, but it is a great way to clear your mind which improves your focus.

Whatever you chooce to spent your break doing whether walking, snacking or just getting some time away, taking regular breaks can help you disengage from your work long enough to feel ready for the next challenge. If your work involves looking at a screen all day, then it is even more important for you to spend some time some time away.

2. Brighten Up Your Workspace

If you have a desk or designated working area, then you should focus on making that space as comfortable and fun as possible. Being surrounded by things that make you happy will help elevate your mood and energy. A picture of a furry friend looking at you when you look up from your work can be enough to brighten your day?

So, decorate that workspace as much as you can, and surround yourself with pictures of people you love and improve your mood at work.

3. Develop Positive Relationships

I have to admit that I’ve been guilty of this, but we all have to stop sweating the small stuff. There are only 40 hours in a work week and sometimes that means that some projects don’t get done right away. So, that email that you sent to the team that has a typo in it should not drag you down. We often beat ourselves up over the smallest mistakes and add stress to our lives unnecessarily.

So, let go of what is outside of your control and stop being so hard on yourself, focus on what you can do and watch your energy and attitude improve.

My previous job was very stressful, but you know what kept me coming in every day with a smile on my face? My co-worker Lauren did. We developed a positive relationship and supported each other during stressful work periods that helped keep me motivated to get through the day.

Also, having good relationships with your work colleagues is also helpful when discussing questions you may have but may not want to go to your boss about.

Co-workers make great friends because you see them every day, and they know exactly what you’re going through at work because they are going through the same thing.

5. Leave Your Work At The Door

This is probably the most challenging to do, and it is simultaneously the most effective to reduce your stress levels. When you come home from work, make sure you turn off your laptop and stop answering your phone.

Sometimes this isn’t possible if your job is on-call, but make sure you find time away from work to decompress without stressing about what tomorrow will bring. With more people working from home these days, leaving work at work isn’t all that easy. To combat this, set up a designated workspace in your home and only work in that area. Then, when the workday is done, walk away.

If you want some pointers to help you declutter your brain from a hard day at work, read our article 6 Tips: How do I declutter my brain?

6. Get In The Groove

Not all employers will allow their employees to listen to music, and with some jobs it’s not possible. If your employer will allow you to, then take advantage of the opportunity to create a positive work environment.

Listening to your favourite songs while working can definitely change your mood which can increase your energy and ultimately your productivity, a little music can go a long way to elevating your workspace.

Anyone that’s had a long list of chores to do at home knows that listening to your favourite tunes can lighten the task at hand, the benefits are easy to recognize. Find out more about music in the workplace in this BBC article : Does Music Help Us Work Better? – It Depends

So, put that power playlist on and watch your workday fly by.

7. Start A Competition

Sometimes to be more productive at work all we need is a little motivation, and a workplace competition can do exactly that. No matter how your work is tracked, it is always possible to find ways to create a competition. It might be that the office competes to complete specific predefined criteria:

  • Project by a Specific Date
  • Number Units Sales
  • Service Response Time
  • Services Delivered
  • Positive Customer Feedback
  • Territory Coverage

Honestly, it doesn’t matter how you choose to measure the competition, as long as it is fair and offers a prize and recognition, it will motivate people to do their best.

8. Get Active at Work

Taking time to exercise during your workday is great for your physical and mental health. If you have already eaten, then don’t be afraid to exercise during your lunch break. Whether it’s a walk around the building or something more intense, exercise can help elevate your energy level and give you the drive to get through the day.

Most people tend to leave exercise before or after work, but you should really do it when you have the most energy. For a lot of us, that’s the middle of our workday. Use your lunch break for a cardio workout and see how good you feel. It is always important to listen to your body and not to exercise when you feel unwell or fatigued, it might be a sign you need rest.

9. Remember to Rest

When it comes to improving how you feel at work, rest is by far the most underrated and ignored strategy. No one’s a ray of sunshine when they stressed out and short of sleep, it’s a combination for a disaster, and can seriously compromise your focus and increase the accuracy of your work.

Rest is also critical for recovery from exercise and to assist in your balancing all your body systems.So now you have a good excuse to give yourself a break, see taking time to rest and recover as a necessity to maintain long-term health and productivity.

Make The Choice!

As human beings, our energy and focus constantly ebb and flow and maintaining a positive mindet is a daily challenge! If you have strategies as outlined above, you can make your work experience a more enjoyable one.

Remember the choice is yours, you can’t change other people choices, but you can choose how you respond. No matter what the situation, there is always something you can do to improve things at work.

Do you want to be more focused?

We all want to achieve more in life and business, but to achieve more you need focus, and to be focused you need to know what prioritize when! If you want to learn how to do exactly that, follow the link below to get the low down no getting things done:

What is Focus Time – 5 Ways on How to Achieve More

5 Ways on How to Overcome Your Fear of Failure

how to overcome your fear of failure

Recognizing Fear of Failure

Whether you’re looking to earn respect, affection, or tangible rewards, the fear of failure can spoil your chances of success before you even get started. To be clear, it’s not a problem to consider the risks of pursuing a new goal. Risk analysis may even help you to succeed. However, a hyper-focus on these negatives represents a fear of failure, and the results are crippling. How to Overcome Your Fear of Failure is something all humans have to do.

“There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.”

– Paulo Coelho

How Fear of Failure Holds you Back

It can stagnate your career and ground would-be relationships. Playing through one dismal outcome after another, the fear of failure discourages risk-taking and innovation. As you ruminate over negative outcomes, you drain your mental energy, leaving nothing to focus on how you could be successful. The result is a self-fulfilling prophecy, where you fail because you simply feared that you would. The good news is, there are several concrete steps you can take to dispel the fear holding you back.

1. Get to the Bottom of Your Fears

Sometimes a fear is ambiguous. Maybe you just have a gut feeling that things will not go well. In order to address and resolve the fear of failure, it’s helpful to understand the true source. What exactly do you think could go wrong? It can be useful to write out the specific fears if you have more than one.

And, rather than stopping at a general fear of rejection, dig deeper. What specifically do you think would get you rejected? Are you afraid you’re lacking experience in a certain area? Are you nervous that you’ll stumble over your words? Many times, these areas that you identify are things you can act on. You can take an extra class, plan to practice the pitch or prepare a defence. These risk mitigation strategies will increase your chances for success and boost your confidence.

2. Develop a Growth Mindset and Redefine Failure

Perhaps you fear you will fail due to some personal attribute that you feel can’t be fixed or changed. If this is the case, you may be suffering from a fixed mindset. Fixed mindsets trap people into thinking that their current conditions and abilities cannot be changed. You can escape your fixed mindset by cultivating a growth mindset instead.

With a growth mindset, you focus your efforts not on the current state, but on the process, you’re working through to improve. You recognise that where you are right now is not where you will always be. Young children have this mindset mastered! A toddler will fall a thousand times in their effort to walk, but they will continue to pull themselves up and try again. With careful consideration, we can develop a growth mindset again.

To foster a growth mindset, you need to watch your inner dialogue. If you hear yourself saying you can’t do something. Try adding the word “yet” to the end of your thought. Perfectionist thinking must also be discarded. It’s better to embrace imperfection, and recognise that the progress you’re making, even if it is very small at first. As the name implies, a growth mindset is focused on learning and growth rather than obsessing over the current state of your ability.

If you are successful in switching to a growth mindset, you will be able to redefine failure. True failure is refusing to try. Any attempt, however successful it may or may not be, will teach you something. And learning is progress, which will improve your chance for future success.

Start a side hustle? Read this blog on active vs passive income

3. Make a Plan to Build Exposure

As with any fear, exposure therapy can help eliminate the fear. Make a plan to slowly build up to more and more exposure to the task you fear. For example, if you fear failing at a speech or pitch, practice in a low stakes’ environment first. You could start in front of a mirror or camera, by yourself. Then you can practice in front of a friend. Having success with smaller risks will build your confidence to tackle the bigger issue.

As you develop these exposure steps, be sure to set positive goals. For example, try not to pick a goal of not looking nervous. Instead, your goal could be to do the pitch while maintaining eye contact and calm breathing. Having a positive frame for what you’re trying to accomplish helps your mind focus on what you should be doing. Negatively framed goals based on what you don’t want to do may inadvertently lead you to ruminate on fears.

plan how to overcome your fear of failure

4. Evaluate All the Possible Outcomes

Many times we’re afraid of failure, but we haven’t thought through what would actually happen if we do fail. Or perhaps we imagine a worst-case scenario and stop there. Instead, it can be useful to think of the whole spectrum of outcomes that could happen. This helps us see that the worst possible scenario is not the only one. After listing out the outcomes, you can further assign likelihoods to each one. What are the realistic chances of each outcome? Chances are, your life is not at stake, and even the worst-case scenario is not as likely as you first imagined.

5. Have a Back-up Plan

By taking each negative outcome from the previous exercise, it can help to think through what your next steps would be in each case. There are always other jobs to apply for or relationships to develop. The comfort of knowing how you would proceed may take the sting off, should the worst-case scenario happen. One specific strategy to help you reframe the impact of a negative outcome is to consider how you will feel about the event in 3 days, 3 months, 3 years, and 30 years from now. Chances are that over time, a single failure will mean less and less to you, and that helps you keep the bigger picture in perspective.

Don’t forget to plan for the future – Planning for the future

Overcoming Fear of Failure

Fear of failure can hold you back. But with these five tips, you can pursue your goals. Hone in on exactly what you’re afraid of so that you can address the risk and develop a growth mindset in your abilities. By making small goals and focusing on your incremental progress rather than the outcomes, you will move in the right direction. Even if the worst-case scenario you can imagine comes true, you will have a plan to keep moving your life in the direction you want to take it.

Are you ready to Launch into the Digital Space?

7 Ways to Maintain Self-Discipline

How to maintain self-discipline

Maybe you’re trying to lose weight. Maybe you’re thinking about a promotion, a career change or a bigger bank account. But why learn how to maintain self-discipline?

Self-discipline can help with all of these goals. It’s one of the pillars of a productive lifestyle, and like a real pillar, it can support much bigger architecture for health, wealth and happiness.

What is self-discipline? How can you build it and channel it for a better life? Not everyone can do it, but if you think that you might be an exception, read on.

What is self-discipline?

Self-discipline is basically self-control. It means that you have enough control over your thoughts and actions to identity good behaviours, resist bad ones and work towards whatever aims that you have for the future.

How can self-discipline improve my life?

Self-discipline can improve everything from your eating habits to your efficiency at the office. It can help you sleep better, work harder, run farther and accomplish greater things. It’s one of the foundational skills involved with setting goals and seeing them through.

Three Cs of Self-Discipline

The best way to look at self-discipline is to memorize the three Cs:

  • Commitment: not giving up even when things get hard
  • Conscientiousness: accomplishing tasks thoroughly and competently
  • Confidence: believing that you can do anything that you set your mind to

Without all three of these cornerstones, self-discipline will fail. For example, if you don’t have conscientiousness, you might take shortcuts on your work or have lots of cheat days with your diet. If this is the case, can you really say that you’re a self-disciplined person?

7 Ways to Maintain Self Discipline

Now that you’ve learned about self-discipline and what it can do for you, it’s time to work on developing and maintaining it. Like anything else, self-discipline is a skill, and it needs to be sustained to keep it strong. Think of it like a muscle that will atrophy if it isn’t used regularly.

While there are many, many ways to cultivate self-discipline, here are just a few tried-and-true techniques.

1. Set Goals

The first step of any self-improvement routine is to establish what you actually want to get out of it. Is it health, happiness, money, friendship, confidence or something else entirely?

Once you’ve figured out the end goal, the next step is creating smaller goals to help you get there. Something that’s often used in professional project management is the SMART method:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Assignable
  • Realistic
  • Time-related

Under the SMART system, rather than just saying “I want to lose weight,” you would say “I want to lose five pounds by next month, so I’m going to exercise at least three days per week and cut back my calories by 500 per day.”

2. Establish a Routine

Your brain loves routine. In fact, if you don’t give it routines, it will create its own, and these might be unhealthy, unproductive or just plain gluttonous.

Change your habits by changing your routines. For example, if you want to improve your sleep schedule, start waking up and going to bed at the same time every day. Do this consistently every single day of the week until your body starts to anticipate your routine. When you start naturally waking up a few minutes before your alarm goes off, you’ll know that the routine has taken effect.

Read this blog on how I maintain my Daily Routine. (DMO)

3. Remove Temptations

With enough self-discipline, temptations aren’t a problem. You’ll have the willpower to ignore them even when they appear.

If you’re just starting out on your self-improvement journey, however, you might not have the physical and emotional strength to resist temptations just yet. They might manifest as cravings, distractions or general enticements that prove too much for you.

There’s no reason to make self-discipline any harder than it has to be, especially when you’re just starting out. Take the chips and sodas out of the kitchen. Remove the television from your workspace. Install browser extensions so that you can’t access social media from 9 – 5. If the temptations aren’t there, you can’t indulge in them.

4. Know Thyself

Retro instagram style image businesswoman hands holding white card sign with it starts with you! text message isolated on grey wall office background

What are your weaknesses?

This isn’t a job interview. You don’t have to dance around the subject or try to spin negatives into positives. Be honest: What bad habits do you have, and how will they impact your quest for self-discipline?

Once you’ve identified your weaknesses, it’ll be much easier to counter them. For example, if you’re on the disorganized side, you can invest in a good daily planner to manage all your tasks and projects. If you tend to lose track of time while working or taking breaks, you can start setting alarms for better time management.

There’s a way to conquer every bad habit. You just have to find it.

If you have a fear of failure you are welcome to check out 5 Ways on How to Overcome Your Fear Of Failure.

5. Track Your Progress

Tracking your progress is a great way to stay motivated, especially if your goal is something slow or not easily seen with the naked eye. It’ll be a real, tangible record of your efforts, and it’ll serve as physical proof that you are moving towards whatever finish line that you’ve set for yourself.

Here are just a few ways to track your progress:

  • Notebooks and journals. These are nice and private, and you can also customize them with colors, doodles, stickers and more.
  • Apps. Apps like “Stride” and “Way of Life” are multipurpose goal-setting programs that will allow you to make notes, generate graphs and give yourself rewards for a job well done.
  • Calendars. These can be hung on the wall for daily, visible motivation as well as a reminder of how far that you’ve come.

6. Have an Accountability Partner

This is a trick that’s often touted by weight loss gurus, but it can also be applied to work, school and anything else that requires self-discipline. The premise is simple: Have someone that you report to about your progress.

It could be a trainer or a lifestyle coach. It could be a friend who has the same goals as you. If your ambitions are work-related, it could even be a boss.

The psychology behind this trick is that it’s easy to underperform when no one knows that you’re performing at all. Once you put actual expectations on your performance, however, you might be motivated to perform well.

7. Refresh Your Motivation Regularly

Motivation isn’t a magical, inexhaustible resource. Like anything else, it can fade or get less effective over time, so it’s important to replenish it just like you’d replenish oil in a car.

Maybe this means finding new affirmations to post around your mirror. Maybe it means changing up your diet and fitness routines so that they stay fresh and invigorating. You can always find new clothes to buy, new food to try, new celebrities to admire and new goals to set.

The important thing is not to backslide into old habits when you realize that you’ve lost motivation. This is a completely normal part of the process, and it isn’t a sign of failure, weakness or a lack of willpower. It isn’t a sign that you should give up. It just means that you need to find new motivation to keep you going.

Bonus Tip

Being able to focus on one thing for a well-defined period produces better work. It also helps get the work done quicker. With less noise, you also tend to have less stress and worry. If your mind is in a stress-free environment your creativity booms.

To be focused means you need to have goals and objectives defined. Once you know where you are going you can organise your time around achieving the goal in short, focused bursts. Learn more about Focus Time Here.

Final Thoughts

It’s hard to have self-discipline. There’s no getting around that. If it were easy, everyone on the planet would look like a supermodel and have a million dollars in the bank.

It takes time and effort to have self-discipline, especially in the pursuit of specific goals. It takes inner strength. It takes a person who is really, genuinely seeking self-improvement.

Is that you?

Practise makes perfect, Positive Phycology lays out some Simple Exercises to Build Your Self-Control Muscle

If you like this article, you may want to learn the 5 Secrets to Ending Perfection Paralysis

Are you ready to Launch into the Digital Space?

How Your Smartphone is Affecting Your Productivity and Focus?

Technology has become integrated into our lives and has had a massive impact on our relationships. Today we can be having a conversation with people physically yet be digitally focused on another conversation on our phone. This is the twenty-first century connected world. Our family, friends, and co-workers have devices and often are not totally present when we talk to them, simply because something else has their attention. It is something that has definitely escalated during the pandemic as people found themselves isolated and not able to socialize.

There is nothing wrong with reading a blog, browsing through social media, or even chatting to a friend online. But it does become a problem when we cant balance our digital lives with our physical lives. This is the point where we need to take back control.

Notifications, the Concentration killer.

One of the biggest problems with having mobile devices is the constant notifications that distract our attention. We naturally want to respond to them. As if they calling us to take action. It’s human nature. Who is that? What if it’s urgent? And we feel the need to check every beep and ping that pops up on our phones.

In your work environment, it can be difficult to maintain focus when you have multiple apps screaming for your attention. One way is to go into your app setting and disable notifications for certain apps like social media. It’s one way to help you focus more. And if you have a moment you can simply open your app to see if there are any notifications or messages that you need to attend to.

Find out : How Social Media Can Accelerate the Growth of Your Business?

Set Times for Social Media

Whether you use social media for personal or business purposes, it can be addictive! You constantly feel the need to see what’s going on in the world. Or what are our friends posting? And this can waste a lot of your productive time especially while you at work. One way to gain control of the way you use social media is to set fixed times for checking and responding to messages or posts.

This is far better than constantly being distracted by it throughout the day. It will also help you avoid wasting productive time on social media. In fact, setting time aside for just social media will help you be more productive with your time online. It’s all about focus and more focus means more productivity.

Know When to Put Your Phone Away

Smartphones dominate our lives. Everyone has one and we see people around us on them all day. But there is the point where you need to just put them away and focus on the people around you? Having your phone in your hand all the time, around family or friends can send the signal you are not a hundred percent available. So why not put your phone away in your cupboard and ignore it while you spending quality time with people that matter. It will in the long run add more value to your life and show the people in your life you present and care.

It may seem like a small thing, even silly, but breaking away from your phone can make a huge difference to your productivity both personally and professionally.

Why not give it a try?

Maybe you’ll be surprised at just how much better you feel!

Are you ready to Launch into CyberSpace?

6 Easy Steps for Maintaining Good Habits

I have recently started running again. Usually, I set myself a goal and I go all out until I hit my target. (My new goal is to run 21.1 km in under 2 hours) But once the running goal is achieved, I tend to fall into lazy habits again. So how do I keep on maintaining good habits?

What is a good habit?

Before we get into how to maintain good habits, we need to understand what a good habit is. The free dictionary defines it as A behaviour that is beneficial to one’s physical or mental health, often linked to a high level of discipline and self-control.

Whereas many of these good habits can be general and common, it’s better you define your own good habits. At least define them in your own way. One person’s good habits will not fit another person’s good habits. It often helps you to define your values first. Knowing your values will allow you to form habits that you will be more likely to keep.

For example, my values include family, time outdoors, and exercise. One habit I have no trouble keeping is taking regular walks in the park with my family (That includes my best friend, Bruno!)

How habits work

The world counts have a great article on Habits. The importance of Good Habits. They explain habits in an interesting way.

There is a habit loop.

  • A trigger: This can be a place, time, person or even feeling
  • Routine: Something you do because of the trigger (i.e., watch TV)
  • Reward: This is a chemical response from your brain.

Because of the reward, the habit loop is reinforced. The loop is a self-reinforcing mechanism that over time becomes automatic. Knowing this means we can create good new habits.

Find out : How To Launch an Online Business

What is the importance of maintaining good habits?

So why is it even important to maintain these good habits?

They can keep you healthy

Eating good foods, exercise and mental health can all be set by creating habits. You need to identify them in your unique frame of reference and set the habit in motion.

They help you to reach your goals

Habits are the building blocks of doing things consistently to produce results. You will need to tweak, change, and reset your habits from time to time when you need to make the step to your next level.

If developed correctly, they keep you focused

By forming the correct habits, it can keep you focused on your goals. For example, I have a daily method of operation which includes a list. My habit is to get this stuff done first. If you want to learn more about DMO, check out this post. Daily Method Of Operation Simple and Fun.

Habits get you through the mundane

And let’s face it, a lot of the things we know we need to do to get where we want to be are not “fun”. Some of them can be rather mundane and easily skipped if not placed into a good habit. One thing I would not do if it were not a habit is to follow up with prospects.

6 ways for maintaining good habits

So now we know what a habit is, how habits work and why habits are important to keep. So here are 5 ways that will help you in maintaining them.

1 Access your goals (Regularly)

It will be very hard to keep a habit that is not in line with your goals. Make sure you have a defined goal, and a plan to get there. If these are in place, it will help you form the habit necessary to get there.

2 Start today

Start immediately. Don’t wait till next Tuesday. Habits are all about momentum. The momentum you have from the thought of what you need to do only lasts for this moment. Next Tuesday there will be an unforeseen problem preventing you from starting.

3 Start small

If you are unfit and decide to run 10 km tomorrow, you might do it once or twice. But when you feel sore and in pain tomorrow and the next day, your body will relate it to a painful experience. What we need for the habit is related to a good feeling. Rather run 1 km a day every second day for a couple of weeks. Build on that once the habit is formed.

4 Schedule it

Related to starting today, and starting small, just make sure it’s in your calendar. To begin with, it may be hard, so get it done first. Get it out the way. You’ll feel better when you get into bed at night. That is the feeling you need. In time the habit will form, and one day you even notice you are doing it. That is the ZEN in forming habits.

5 Get Accountability

If you find it hard to get started on your own, get a friend to hold you accountable. Just let them know what you are doing and why you are doing it. Share your schedule with them. Hopefully, they check in with you regularly. Eventually, hopefully, you will be telling them of your daily success before they ask the question!

6 Create new goals

I started this article with my problem. How will I keep a good habit going once my goal is achieved? Well, I think I may have answered it here above in a way. I need to make sure it aligns with my values (checked) and I will need to create a new goal before I reach this one.

The new goal after this one is: Run a marathon. 42.2 KM

Just a note here: Make sure you enjoy your success in between goals. Otherwise, you might lose the point of why you are doing what you are doing

In Closing

As important as it is to form habits, a habit can go into overdrive. Picking up this overdrive can be tricky, as habits are invisible when in motion. So just remember to regularly access your values, improve your goals, and listen to those around you. You should be able to spot one in overdrive.

So, happy habit forming!

Are you ready to Launch into CyberSpace?

Exit mobile version