Donna’s fa­vorite pro­duc­tiv­ity hacks

iPhone Life Magazine - - Productivity -

Just start: It's easy to feel daunted by new projects. I find that tak­ing the sim­ple step of open­ing a doc­u­ment, ti­tling it, and writ­ing a few bul­let points makes the project feel tan­gi­ble and ready to dig in to.

Batch process ev­ery­thing: Do you re­peat tasks that in­volve the same or sim­i­lar steps? You can usu­ally save time by group­ing these tasks to­gether and tack­ling each step for all be­fore mov­ing on to the next step (e.g., write your ar­ti­cles for the week, fact check all of them, then add images at the end).

Lis­ten to mu­sic with­out lyrics: I used to lis­ten to pop or hip hop at work, but stopped af­ter catch­ing my­self singing along in­stead of ac­tu­ally do­ing my job. Re­cently, I dis­cov­ered that lis­ten­ing to mu­sic with­out lyrics gets me in the zone with­out dis­tract­ing me (Try Spo­tify's Deep Fo­cus or Pro­duc­tive Morn­ing playlists).

Em­brace the chaos: Au­thor and pro­fes­sor Brené Brown is the first per­son who in­tro­duced me to the idea that when things feel messy, good stuff is usu­ally hap­pen­ing. For me, this ap­plies to big-pic­ture plan­ning meet­ings and com­plex writ­ing projects. When I feel over­whelmed and like I can't see an end in sight, that's of­ten when I've done my best work.

Know your next step: Be­fore I leave work for the day, I write down my ex­act next step for a project so I can jump right back in the next morn­ing with­out los­ing mo­men­tum.

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