Reaching a lull in the day is common, and it can be disastrous for maintaining motivation and work drive to keep pursuing progress and to get through grueling tasks at hand. Our bodies and minds can only handle so much work before we reach a breaking point, where we are in desperate need of an energy boost. However, thinking of the ways to be more prepared and efficient during the day can instantly rev our systems and refuel our draining energy supplies.
As a certified health coach, I work with clients on finding passion for their line of work, staying organized and on top of daily tasks and appointments, and keeping themselves nourished and energized to keep up the great work. Excelling cannot be achieved unless motivation, productivity and energy levels are all hard at work to boost our abilities to get. it. done. It's likely to experience moments of fatigue and de-motivation during the day, especially when a project appears too time consuming or we find ourselves running on little and insufficient sleep; however, we have the power to shift our mindsets, reinvigorate our bodies, and get excited to move on to more tasks and accomplishments. Use these eleven ways to be more prepared and efficient at work.
1. Prep Before Meetings
Walking into a meeting without adequate prep time can be stressful, as it's important to make sure that you are prepared to answer any questions and be able to really articulate your opinions well. "Set aside 20 minutes before meetings to do research on what the meeting will be about and to game plan a strategy to make the call or discussion work in your favor," says web designer and founder of 97 Switch, Jeremy Greenberg, over email with Bustle.
2. Get The Hardest Tasks Done First
"Work on the hardest parts of your day as soon as possible so that you can feel that you have already accomplished a lot early on, and it can set the tone for the rest of the day," says Greenberg. Also, studies show that our minds are better able to tackle more challenging things at the start of the day, and so it's best to knock those out and save easier tasks for that dreaded afternoon slump.
3. Wake Up To Exercise
Exercising in the morning can boost endorphins, which will make you happier and more productive. Also, research shows that exercise can make you more creative and have higher cognitive functioning post-workout. "Even if it is short, a little exercise in the morning is a great way to start thinking more clearly throughout the day," advises Greenberg. Find a class or gym that suits your needs, or go for a run outside.
4. Set Aside "Work Time" In Calendar
All "work time" is work time, right? Well, there is a difference between assignments, meetings and other commitments for work that must take place in the day and other more miscellaneous work tasks that can help further your career long-term, check off tedious, smaller tasks you keep putting off, or help you find personal success. "If you choose specific time in your calendar to tackle your 'to do list,' then you will know going into that time that you plan on accomplishing X, Y and Z in that time," says Greenberg.
5. Have An Open Mind
Going into work with an open mind and a positive perspective can mentally prepare us for a good, productive day ahead. If you go in thinking about all the work you have to do in a negative, stressed manner, then you will not be as prepared to go full force on your assignments or have enough stamina to persevere when the tasks become too challenging to handle. However, if you think about you work as something exciting, that will lead to accomplishments, you'll feel more prepared.
6. Prioritize Short-Term Tasks
While we might have a list of long-term goals we would like to accomplish, it's best to set aside time on the schedule for "long-term projects," and prioritize short-term work assignments in order to stay set on your immediate goal and get it done quickly, efficiently and stress-free. Taking on too many projects at once can result in less efficiency and productivity in all, when you would have been better off on tackle smaller items separately.
7. Eat Smart
Nourishing your body with energizing, protein-rich foods can keep you mentally and physically prepared for the day ahead and will boost productivity so that you feel more accomplished and relaxed during your assignments. Eating leafy greens, which are high in B vitamins, iron and protein, will energize you, along with eggs, legumes, fish and lean meats for protein. Nuts make for a great addition of healthy fat to maximize absorption of nutrients and benefit the brain. Of course, fruits and vegetables are always a key staple, too!
8. Pencil In Social Obligations
All work and no play is no fun. In order to be more efficient when at work, it's best to give yourself the proper balance of work and social life so that you can stay motivated and excited for work tasks at hand. Not having a social life that fulfills you can lead to stress, disappointment, resentment and inability to perform. Building a social connection will boost wellbeing and happiness.
9. Know When You Need Help
Some heavy work assignments call for additional help and support, and sometimes setting pride aside and reaching out for help is the greatest way to be more prepared for what lies ahead and to be more efficient and productive when working on the project together. Build a team of co-workers you find would be a useful resource and work together towards accomplishing the common goal.
10. Close Social Media Tabs
Unless your job involves social media, close those tabs until a lunch break or moment of downtime in the day. Facebook, Twitter, and other game sites can be extremely distracting and can lead to wasted time during the day. Experts share that getting rid of distractions can make you more efficient each day and help break a habit of constantly looking into these channels during work hours.
11. Learn The Basics
Learning and perfecting the basics is so critical for moving up at work. We often feel that we can short cut our way, or learn on the job, without needing to practice the proper techniques, terminologies or business model examples. However, while learning on the job is very real, and is expected, you shouldn't throw away the basics before really understanding them. Everything you do stems from basic steps, so always remember that.
Whether you have a lot on your plate, or have only a few smaller projects, it's best to make sure that no matter what task is at hand, you are completely prepared and driven to be as efficient and productive as possible. Having questions, understanding concepts, articulating steps and bringing in team members are all helpful ways to get it done.
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