Are you looking for tips to boost your productivity so that you can make the most out of your time? Then welcome! This blog post is all about how to build a high-productivity schedule.
Whatever line of work you’re in, productivity is a necessity. You may be an entrepreneur wearing far too many hats wanting to make sure you’re able to do all you need to do to launch your business. You may want to start a podcast in your downtime, but you need to get through your other tasks efficiently to actually have that downtime! Or perhaps you’re simply looking to get more done in the day during your working hours so that you can cultivate more time for your family, friends, or hobbies. Whatever the reason, being able to reach high levels of productivity consistently is the goal.
But productivity doesn’t just happen. It has to be planned, cultivated, and honed. In short, productivity is a skill. Which is great news! Because skills can be learned! They can be developed. And they can be mastered! Which means that we’re all capable of becoming highly productive.
And one of the best ways we’ve learned how to do this is to design a high-productivity schedule for our workflow.
Designing a productive schedule is essential for managing time and tasks efficiently. It helps to maximize productivity by reducing distractions and procrastination, and allows you to focus on your goals and accomplish your daily tasks. Studies have even shown that having a plan or routine can help increase motivation, reduce stress levels, and even improve mental health.
All this and improved productivity? Yes, please! Keep reading for our best strategies for creating a high-productivity schedule that will actually work for you!
Strategies for Creating a High-Productivity Schedule
1. Identify Your Most Productive Hours
We’re going to start the creation of a high-productivity schedule by asking a fairly simple question…When do you feel most productive? Have you ever thought about that? We’ve found it’s an often overlooked aspect of productivity.
We’re not all wired the same. Some of us wake up with a tank full of energy, ready to tackle tasks from the get-go. Others take a little more time getting going in the morning, but really hit their stride come afternoon or evening.
And because of this, one way to increase your productivity is to identify your most productive hours.
These are the times of day when you are most alert and focused, and therefore able to complete the more complicated tasks more efficiently. It’s important to identify which hours of the day you are most productive so you can plan your schedule accordingly. If you’re someone who takes a little more time warming up in the mornings, rather than tackling the big tasks first, knock off some of your smaller tasks. Then, when your energy levels kick in, you can tackle those bigger tasks or projects.
We’ve found that it’s super important to pay attention to your natural rhythms and work with them, rather than against them. By figuring out when you work best, you can maximize your productivity and achieve more in less time.
Not only will it help you complete tasks more efficiently, but it will also help you feel more accomplished and energized throughout the day as you work with your energy levels and find your high-productivity zone.
2. Create a To-Do List of Tasks You Need to Accomplish
The next step in creating a high-productivity schedule is to create your to-do list. Keeping a to-do list is a great way to stay organized and on track. Start by jotting down all the tasks you need to complete. We find it best in terms of productivity to list everything, from sending emails to finishing that big project. Write it all down.
Once you have your full list, you can then start to prioritize your tasks, so that you know what tasks need to get done first. From the main list, you can move tasks into your weekly schedule. Add a mix of some smaller and bigger tasks to your daily schedule, keeping the times of your highest levels of productivity in mind.
That way, come the end of the week, you’ll find that you’ve actually accomplished all you set out to do! Rather than looking back, wondering what you did with all your time.
3. Break Down Big Tasks into Small Steps
Moving on to step 3…breaking down the big tasks. Often, we put off the “big tasks” because they feel, well, too big! We’re overwhelmed just thinking about them. So we procrastinate completing them until it’s a mad rush at the end and we wish we started sooner!
And that’s why breaking down big tasks into smaller, more manageable steps is a strategy for high productivity.
It’s a game-changer when it comes to completing goals efficiently. By doing so, you’re no longer faced with an intimidating task, but instead a series of manageable actions. It’s like solving a complex puzzle – each small step leads you one step closer to the finished product. This approach allows you to focus on one task at a time without feeling the pressure of the entire project. As you complete each small task, you can gain momentum and a sense of accomplishment.
Breaking down bigger projects into smaller tasks is also a great way to measure your progress, which can be incredibly motivating and spur on momentum for even greater productivity!
4. Get Rid of Distractions
This is a big one! If you want to boost your productivity, you have to minimize your distractions. In today’s fast-paced world, distractions are everywhere, and they can suck up your productivity like a vacuum.
And the thing with distractions is that there are some things that are definite distractions, but we don’t always recognize them as such. And they’re just merrily sapping our productivity in the background.
Every time a notification pops up on your screen, that Netflix show you’ve got playing in the background, they’re all secretly stealing your focus and chipping away at your productivity.
So, the next step in creating your high-productivity schedule is to identify your distractions and work out how to diminish or completely eliminate them.
If you’ve just realized that simultaneously watching Netflix, or listening to your latest true-crime podcast while trying to complete your work tasks is probably not helping you get through said tasks as quickly as you could, the solution here is easy. Just switch those off until the task is complete. (Hint: These could be your rewards for completing the task at hand. More on that in the next strategy!)
Try turning off any social media or email notifications that you may have activated. You can get all these when you enter the app. You don’t need them popping across your screen whenever there’s a new notification. These seemingly slight distractions add up at the end of the day!
Create a Distraction-Free Zone…
Next, think about your workspace. Is it a zone conducive to high productivity? Or are there some hidden distractions stealing your concentration and your productivity?
You want your workspace – whether that’s at the office or at home – to align with your desire for increased productivity. If you work from home, perhaps you need to look at relocating your desk to a quieter part of the house. If you work at an office, you might not be able to do too much about your workspace location, but you can still create a distraction-free zone. Clean up your desk, minimize visual distractions, or invest in a pair of noise-canceling headphones.
Any and all of these would be effective in helping you boost your productivity.
5. Create A Reward System For Task Completion
The final two strategies for creating a high-productivity schedule may seem frivolous, and even counterproductive.
But trust us! They’re what have been missing from the not-so-productive schedules of past you!
Our first more unorthodox strategy for building your high-productivity schedule is to create a reward system of sorts for task completion.
Huh? Rewards for task completion? What am I? Five?
No, you’re human. And we tend to work better when we’re incentivized! And that’s why building some kind of reward system into your schedule takes it from average to one that yields high productivity.
The idea here is to create an extra layer of motivation and reward as you complete more tasks throughout your day. By setting achievable goals for yourself and attaching a reward to their completion, you are incentivized to work diligently and efficiently.
Don’t overcomplicate things…
The rewards don’t have to be elaborate. They can be anything from a snack break with your favorite caffeinated beverage, to a short break in your day to do something you enjoy. The key is finding what motivates you and sticking to it.
The satisfaction of completing a task, paired with the excitement of earning a reward, can be a powerful combination. So as you’re creating your own unique high-productivity schedule, try adding some incentives for completing certain tasks, or a certain amount of work.
These can be great motivators in their own right, but they also help to bring balance to your schedule, which is actually vital for helping you stay highly motivated and highly productive. By implementing a reward system, you may find that you’re able to tackle tasks with greater energy and focus and enjoy a sense of accomplishment when you’ve earned your well-deserved reward.
6. Take Breaks at Regular Intervals Throughout the Day
Last but not least, when you’re creating your high-productivity schedule, you need to make sure that you’re also scheduling in regular breaks throughout the day. Wait. Aren’t breaks counterproductive to productivity?
Taking breaks at regular intervals throughout the day is not only good for your physical health but also for your mental well-being. Studies have shown that taking short breaks every hour can increase productivity and prevent burnout. By taking a few minutes to stretch, go for a walk, or simply step away from your screen, you can recharge both your body and mind. And this ensures that you’re always operating at your best and you’re always “in the zone”.
Incorporating breaks into your daily routine can also promote creativity and reduce stress levels. All of which leads to high levels of productivity.
So don’t neglect the downtime! Make sure that you include slots for regular breaks as you build your high-productivity schedule. And you’ll always be functioning at your best, which means you’ll consistently be able to achieve high levels of productivity.
We all desire to be more productive. Whether it’s to help us hit our daily tasks more efficiently, carve out more time for our podcast side hustle, or just to have more downtime after work, productivity is a powerful tool. And when it comes to improving our productivity, building a high-productivity schedule is key.
And with these strategies, a high-productivity schedule is totally achievable!
By identifying your most productive hours, creating a to-do list of tasks you need to accomplish, breaking down bigger tasks into small steps, getting rid of distractions, creating a reward system for when you complete tasks, and taking breaks at regular intervals throughout the day, you’ll be able to make steady progress towards achieving your goals. Take the time to create a high-performance schedule that works for you, set achievable goals that are realistic and achievable with your lifestyle, and start making some real progress!
Related read: 10 Top Free Resources to Boost Your Productivity