I have always known hard work to be an essential secret of success. And because I like succeeding in all I do, I work hard.
The harder I work, the more I realize that I need to work a little harder in order to get better results. This creates a vicious cycle for me.
If you are like me, you must have gotten tired of this cycle. Of course you want to be more productive, but you don’t want to work harder than you already do.
Here are 8 things you can do to become more productive without working harder:
- Don’t multi-task.
Multitasking usually promises to get a million things done at the same time. What it won’t tell you is that it will take a longer time, and you will lose focus. Worse still, you may end up not completing any of those million tasks.
Don’t fall for that trap.
Be focused on your goals. Follow through with your to-do lists without distractions. Don’t do too many things at the same time. And please keep a tab on your tabs.
When working on an important project, switch off your phone if you have to. Ignore those emails unless they are very urgent. You can answer them later.
- Go straight to the point.
Make it a habit to go straight to the point. If you have a meeting, hit the nail on the head as soon as possible. There is no point spending one hour in a meeting that could have lasted for thirty minutes.
Prepare your elevator speech in such a way that anybody can know who you are and what you do in forty five seconds.
Time is a very precious asset; you don’t impress anybody by beating around the bush. Make it a habit to be concise with words.
- Learn every day
Make it a habit to learn every day. Learning will expose you to what other people have done to obtain the same results you desire.
Go for seminars, read books, listen to audio teachings, get yourself a mentor, and join a mastermind group. Whatever you do, make out time to learn every day.
My favourite quote was gotten by Mahatma Gandhi. He said, “Live as if you will die tomorrow. Learn as if you will live forever.”
- Type Faster.
Most of our jobs today have one or two things to do with a keyboard. Learn how to type faster. There are so many shortcuts that can give you better and faster results while working on the computer.
For instance, you can press Ctrl +N when you need to open a new document.
Get the Mavis Beacon Typing Tutor application and practice during your spare time. No matter how fast you type, you can always be faster.
- Call more than you type.
We tend to type a lot these days. There are so many texts to send, and so many emails to reply to. From my experience, calls still get better and faster results.
First of all, speaking over the phone saves you more time because we normally speak faster than we type.
Apart from that, emails and texts can be impersonal at times. So if you want better results with that client, prospect or boss, pick up your phone and call.
- Take care of your Health.
You cannot be productive if you are bedridden and hospitalized. Make it a habit therefore, to take good care of your health. Go for check-ups regularly, especially if you are above forty.
Exercise more, it clears your brain. It also makes for a better flow of oxygen to your brain. This alone can give you better results.
Also make out time to eat well. If you notice fatigue, please rest, take a nap, or sleep.
Personally, I get better results after a nap, than when I try to fight off sleep.
- Make a “don’t do” list, and keep it handy.
We all know about the importance of writing to do lists. Equally important is having a “don’t do” list.
Having this list will help you keep yourself in check, and prevent you from engaging in unproductive activities.
- Ask the right Questions.
Make it a habit to always ask the right questions. This can save you tonnes of hard work. You can easily learn what to do to get the result you desire if you ask the right question.
In conclusion, nobody will give you a special price for the effort you put in to obtain the result you did. All everybody is after is how productive you are at the end of the day..
Of course, hard work is still indispensable to success in any venture. However, smart work will help you become highly productive at the end of the day.
Toby Nwazor is an entrepreneur. He is equally a free lance writer who is passionate about helping other people live their best lives now. He is the co-founder of the personal development blog http://www.tobyandkc.com