Do you often leave the office after a long day only to feel like you haven’t accomplished anything you set out to? If so, you are not alone. Although Americans are working longer hours than ever before, many companies are reporting lower productivity. To fight the workday slump, you must fix the following four bad habits that are killing your productivity:
Not Creating a Daily Agenda
The office is a fast-paced environment with many balls being juggled in the air at once. You can be prepared, and catch the most important balls that keep you on track, or you can be unprepared, and drop all the balls, causing you to fail to meet your priorities.
To maximize productivity, create and follow a daily agenda. Focus on the most pressing items to handle first—these can be projects with a short turnaround or matters for an important client.
List each task and write down the approximate amount of time to get it done. This will help you to move along and not get stuck on trivial details that will hinder your progress.
Between our computers, tablets and smartphones, we are more accessible now than ever before. Stopping your work to check on an incoming text or browsing through social media to see what your friends did over the weekend is tempting, but it is a major productivity killer!
While it may be impossible to resist all forms of personal communication throughout the entire working day, limit it to your break times. Close all the windows to your personal email and social media accounts and silence your mobile until lunchtime, and just see how much more you’ll get done in the same amount of time!
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Mornings are a rush for everyone, as we try to do morning drop-offs and handle the nightmarish commute, few of us feel that we have time to devote to a healthy breakfast. Most of us resort to a sugar-laden coffee and a bagel or doughnut to tide us over until lunch.
The problem is, many of us end up working through lunch, and get by on vending machine snacks to tide us over. What ends up happening is a sugar crash every few hours that leaves us tired, irritated and in a brain fog.
To promote energy and productivity, make healthy changes to your diet. Instant oatmeal takes less than a minute to make at home or in the office and contains B-vitamins that metabolize energy. Or, grab a healthy juice full of vegetables, such as carrots and beets, that contain carbs easily digested for energy.
Sitting Too Long
Did you know that the very thing you think you must do in order to work is hurting your productivity? We are talking about sitting at your desk!
Research has found that sitting is not only bad for your posture and health, but it decreases energy levels. One source states that our bodies enter sleep mode when we sit, which leads to the following results: “your blood circulation slows and production of insulin, a hormone that helps turn food into energy, decreases.”
To fight these negative effects of sitting, you can take frequent standing and stretching breaks, switch over to a standing desk, or create a standing meeting policy at your workplace.