This is a life-saving strategy when it comes to becoming more focused and productive… especially if you are easily distracted like me. Purchase a time blocking cube use it religiously. I use this one here.
Decide how long you are going to spend on the task at hand then set the timer. This strategy is reserved for tasks that will take anywhere from 5 minutes – 1 hour. Work without pause or break until the timer goes off.
The idea is that you will have completed the task within the allotted time then can move on to the next. It sounds so simple but it is major if you are a procrastinator and trying to work through any to-do list. Don’t knock it until you try it!
Honestly, I’m so over people saying they can’t meditate.
If you can’t sit for five minutes focusing on your breath then you probably need it more than anyone. At the most basic level meditation gives you CLARITY and a sense of CALM.
Many successful, high preforming people swear by meditation. Major ideas and breakthroughs happen during meditation. Meditation can be the difference between handling a problem well and letting a problem shake you.
The same way we take care of our bodies by eating right, exercising, showering, etc we NEED to take care of our minds by meditating. It should be as routine as brushing your teeth every morning.
Use the 60 second rule
If something is going to take 60 seconds or less (e.g. hanging up your coat, grabbing the garbage out of your car, loading the dishwasher, texting someone back, making your bed) then do it right away, do it immediately.
Those small 60 second task when uncompleted become much larger tasks and they add weight to your to-do list and linger in the back of your mind. Clear up that headspace for more important things – a clear mind ensures you have room for ideas, creativity and joy to come through. Also, getting things done (even small things) helps to build momentum to get larger tasks done. You’ll feel a sense of accomplishment, a sense of “look at me go I’m a badass”.
Improve your relationship with food
Food is fuel. We eat it to give ourselves energy to thrive day to day and accomplish our tasks. It’s easy to forget this and to eat simply because it tastes good, its a cost effective meal or we are bored. Shift your thinking and truly make the connection between what you put in your body and how you feel.
What you eat directly affects your energy levels, your mood… yes, your mood, and duh your health. NINETY percent of serotonin is made in your digestive track…. SO, a healthy gut equals a happy you. A healthy gut can’t be achieved by eating processed, frozen, high sugar foods… or foods that don’t agree with your body specifically. Take the time to get to know what feels good to you. Don’t shoot the messenger.
Move your body
I know this is the obvious one that is talked about all the time but its honestly that important! A survey done of the oldest people alive in North America today found that they all engaged in daily physical activity even at their ages of 100+.
I’m not saying you need to do a high intensity workout everyday BUT many of us spend nearly 40 hours a week sitting in an office chair. The effects of this on our bones, joints, moods and overall health are undeniable. Especially since we can safely assume that most people aren’t sitting ergonomically correct.
For physical, mental and emotional health reasons it is crucial to get the minimum recommended 30 minutes a day of moving your body. This can be going for a walk, yoga, Pilates, dance, playing a sport, doing a workout video at home, go to the gym… whatever feels good for you.
Write it down
They say we have about 70,000 thoughts a day swirling around in our heads. No wonder we get so overwhelmed sometimes. Create a note in your phone for random thoughts/ ideas/ to-do’s. This note will act as your dumping ground.
Throughout the day when things come to me I write them down in a note. Sometimes I go back to them and act on them, sometimes they are never to be looked at again. It doesn’t matter. What matters is I’m getting it out of my head, onto my phone and literally reducing stress and clearing space in my mind for more peace, joy, intuition and creativity.
Instead of thinking the same things, feeling stress or overwhelm that you will forget, over-thinking about the thought JUST WRITE IT DOWN. If anyone looked at the note in my phone they might think I was crazy. It’s the most random running list of nonsense. It’s a graveyard for my thoughts… but hey, it works and every now and then there is a golden idea in the mess.
Set monthly intentions
Each month decide what your focus is for that month. What are you working on? What improvement to yourself and your life do you want to make? What small change can you commit to that will result in big long term improvements?
This is the best way I’ve found to routinely check in with myself and ensure I am overall heading in the direction I want to be in. The days turn to weeks and the weeks to months and before you know it you are celebrating New Year’s Eve again!
We’ve all been there… time truly slips by and a lack of improvement kicks in. Don’t get stagnant! Be self-aware and intentional about what you want and how you will achieve it.
Limit screen time
Our phones can serve as major procrastination tools. The apps we use on them can sometimes be responsible for those shitty, negative, comparison feelings we get. It’s so important to disconnect. Instead of mindlessly scrolling and checking your phone a thousand times a day create a screen time limit!
Step 1: if you have an iPhone you can literally go into settings and set a screen time limit. Go to settings – screen time – app limits – add limit. Select the apps then select the amount of time each day you are willing to spend on it. In that same setting, you can view how much time you currently spend on your phone. The numbers can be daunting.
Step 2: turn off ALL notifications on ALL apps. I did this a few years ago for Instagram and it changed my life. NOTIFICATIONS ARE DISTRACTIONS. You can check and respond to all your notifications at once (perhaps at night or in the morning on the following day).
If you are like me and are trying to build an online business it can be tricky to limit screen time. What I noticed when I set limits is that I didn’t waste any of the time on my phone just scrolling. You stop getting lost going down the rabbit hole of your feed. Instead you start to actually use your time wisely and deliberately.
If you enjoyed this blog post you may also like 3 Ways to Squeeze Meditation into Your Busy Schedule.