Everyone wants to be able to look back at their week and give themselves a pat on the back for achieving their set goals. The whole essence of having a productive week is the ability to reach your goal.
However, it has posed such a great challenge to people in modern times particularly with the abundance of distractions today online. A study conducted at the University of California Irvine revealed that it takes an average of 23mins and 15 seconds to refocus after a distraction.
Here are five hacks to help you have a more productive week.
1. Plan your week early
2. Optimize your weekly plan
3. Concentrate on one task at a time
4. Track progress
5. Learn to say no
1. PLAN YOUR WEEK EARLY
The best time to plan your week is between Monday morning and Sunday evening. It is a good idea to review your previous week on Sunday evening and plan for the new week accordingly.
Reviewing your previous week allows you to identify your errors and shortfalls, reveals why your week was not as productive as you had hoped, and helps you plan your upcoming week. The mistakes made last week will be repeated if you do not review your previous week.
Regardless of the time you choose, make sure it helps to make your week productive.
2. OPTIMIZE YOUR WEEKLY PLAN
To-do lists are another proven hack you can use to stay organized during the week. By itemizing tasks, they become clearer and easier to accomplish. Productivity coach and author David Allen say you can still have a productive week with a long to-do list. Make your to-do list concise, eliminate unimportant tasks, and ensure it is result-driven.
You will be able to focus on the tasks and accomplish them faster by listing them in order of importance. By focusing on more important tasks: you can have a more productive week.
3. CONCENTRATE ON A SINGLE TASK
Following that to-do list succinctly is the next step. You should avoid multitasking by choosing a task and focusing on it, and do not pick up any additional tasks until you have completed that task if you want to have a productive week.
In this article, we mentioned that if you get distracted, you need at least 23 minutes to be able to focus again on your task, this can be very draining because it could also take you up to 50 minutes in extreme cases. Too many distractions like this will leave you frustrated and unproductive.
FOCUS ON BEING PRODUCTIVE INSTEAD OF BUSY – TIM FERRIS (AMERICAN PODCASTER, AUTHOR AND ENTREPRENEUR)
4. TRACK PROGRESS
One of the reasons people don’t have productive weeks is that they focus on the tasks and pay no attention to results. Tracking progress will help you free up your to-do list, it takes off tasks that have been done and shows you how far you have come.
Results are always an encouragement to do more. When you focus on results it gives you a sense of fulfilment and encouragement which in turn makes you happier and success-driven. You should document your results and track them throughout the week. This will go a long way in improving your weekly productivity.
5. LEARN TO SAY NO
There is a popular nursery rhyme that goes:
Wherever you go
Wherever you be
Do not say Yes
When you need to say No.
People believe saying no might make them come off as wicked or snobbish but when you say yes to everyone, you will only be piling up tasks for yourself. At some point, it is important to say no politely and turn down some requests for assistance.
This will help you avoid piling up tasks that will make you exhausted and unproductive, and will help you have a more productive week.
A lot of people are struggling with having productive weeks which is why this report by Forbes showed that about $190bn has been spent annually on both the physical and emotional effects of burnout in the workplace. By applying these hacks, you will be on your way to having more productive weeks henceforth.
Productive weeks will culminate into a beautiful career journey for you, check out some of our publications on career success and growth: