Isn’t it time we all start to think about how to work smarter and not harder?
Because multi-tasking is a modern day myth.
There, I said it.
Trying to do multiple things at once saps our energy and splits our focus.
But with technology constantly vying for our attention, how can we be more productive when we’re regularly torn between priorities? Here are my top tips and examples.
Know What Works for You
Whether you’re a morning person or a night owl, being your own boss means there’s a certain degree of flexibility that you can exercise when it comes to where you work and when.
Consider when you’re productive and then schedule tasks that require the most amount of energy and focus when you are likely to be at your day’s peak.
Having social media notifications ping regularly can be the perfect distraction when we’re not fully focussed on the task at hand. I switch my phone to night mode which limits my unhealthy need to check my phone every time it pings for my attention and puts me back in control.
Close the Inbox
Where possible, close the inbox entirely to avoid being sucked in to responding to items which can easily wait. I use the Outlook app on my phone which enables me to snooze emails so that they reappear at a certain time of day meaning I’m not stuck with an annoying notification.
Use the Pomodoro Technique
I’ve spoken about Pomodoro and Tomato Timer a couple of times now and continue to use it daily.
It’s simply a way of managing your time and maximising focus by outlining 25 minutes (Pomodoros) of deep focus work, followed by five minutes’ break. Then, after four ‘pomodoros’ have passed, you take a longer break of up to 20 minutes.
Block Time in the Calendar
In line with my Pomodoro approach, I’ve also started planning my day by blocking out 30-minute chunks in my calendar. All items can be shuffled around based on client demand, but this rough outline has hugely helped me stay focussed, more productive and on track throughout the day.
Multitask – but Not How You Might Expect
Audiobooks and podcasts have revolutionised my life. I listen to at least two business books per month with Audible and honestly wouldn’t have time to learn so much if I wasn’t maximising my commuting/walking/running time. This is the only type of multitasking I’d ever recommend.
If you are thinking about how to work smarter and not harder, I offer a free consultation and would love to hear from you.