Being an entrepreneur and/or working from home can be extremely rewarding and fulfilling, but it can also be a challenge! Staying on task and remaining productive is a real challenge when you don’t have a boss, manager, or other co-workers to keep you on point. Today I’m sharing 7 different productivity tips that I use to keep myself moving forward and on task!
1. No Notifications
Notifications popping up on your phone or your computer screen is a proven productivity killer. I don’t know about you, but when you get notified that someone said something or sent you something, the urge to go and check it out is almost impossible to resist. But what happens then? You get lost in the endless scroll of social media or you get sidetracked responding to an email and before you know it a few hours have gone by. What you were supposed to get done gets pushed off until tomorrow. AGAIN. Don’t let notifications get in the way of getting your work done. I turned off all notifications on my phone a few months ago and let me tell you my productivity during the day has increased tenfold! I will never go back!
2. Schedule Blocks of Time
When you don’t have the structure of a 9-5 to deal with, working for yourself or working from home can be kind of a free for all. If you don’t go into every day without a plan, the day can tend to get away from you and you might end up feeling like you didn't get anything done.
Planning out your week at the beginning of the week and then scheduling blocks of time to take care of tasks can be a huge productivity booster. Knowing that every day from 9-9:30 you will deal with social media and from 1-3 you will focus on blog posting etc…can keep you on point and moving throughout the day. Hold yourself accountable to get done what you have pre-scheduled to get done. This will also free you up to not feel “guilty” during other parts of the day when you feel like you should be getting work done that you didn’t get done earlier in the day.
3. Have Office Hours
Having set office hours can be a huge benefit especially if you have other commitments, like children or a spouse, that also need your time. If you know that no one else will be in the house from 9-3, then dedicate yourself to working those hours. Anytime after or before those hours, work will not be done and you can focus your energies on other commitments. It doesn’t really matter what the hours are or when they occur during the day, but be honest with yourself about when you work best, when you have the ability to work in a focused way and stick to it!
4. Give Yourself Breaks
Along with scheduling blocks of time, make sure to also schedule yourself some breaks throughout the day. Whether it be a few minutes to go outside and take a walk, a quick 10 minute break to stretch, a lunch break with a favorite TV show or even a short afternoon snooze, taking breaks throughout the day gives your brain a chance to relax and re-energize!
5. Utilize Resources
Even though in many ways technology has made our lives more complicated, it also has the ability to make our lives so much easier and more efficient. Utilize some really great productivity resources to help you complete tasks that are repetitive or time-sucking. There are so many resources out there that can help small business owners and entrepreneurs (way too many to get into here), but I encourage you to ask others in your field what they use. Do some google searching or ask in Facebook groups for some resources that others use to keep on point and keep their days being productive. I promise you will find some really valuable things out there that can make a huge difference in your day to day work life!
6. White Noise
This might not work for everyone, but I find that having a little bit of white noise on wherever I am working lends itself to my productivity. Rather than the room being completely silent, having some music playing, a show on in the background or even this awesome new white noise website (Noisli) can provide some subtle noise in the background that helps keep me focused on the task at hand. I’m not at all sure why it works, but it just seems to!
7. Schedule Social Media
I’ve saved one of the best for last. Ohhh Social Media. This is probably one of the biggest struggles for most small business owners and especially creative entrepreneurs. We need to be on social media. This is often the main source of finding clients. But once you get there, it is so, so, SO easy to stay there. For hours. And HOURS. An easy solution to stay away from social media as much as possible during working hours is to schedule everything ahead of time. Use a resource like Buffer, Hootsuite, CoSchedule, or Edgar to plan all of your posts for a few days at a time and then walk away. You can still get your information out there, but you don’t loose hours in the process by getting sucked into juicy Facebook posts or group conversations.
I hope these tips have been helpful for you and that you now have some more tools in your tool belt for staying productive throughout the day! What is your #1 favorite productivity tip to keep yourself on point?
Today's post was written by the amazing and extremely talented Cinnamon Wolfe of Cinnamon Wolfe Photography.