How to boost your productivity (and kill distraction)

Escaping the distractions at this age, is a heck of a difficult task. No matter how many times we try to align ourselves with our dream-life, nothing seems to work. We tend to slip back into our old ways. But, not this time!

Read this well-tailored 5-steps guide to become a productivity champ, right now!

1) Sort out your internal emotions

Why is it important?

This is the M-O-S-T important point in the list – especially if you get overwhelmed or anxious comparatively easily.

Life can be quite challenging, but it is these challenges that make our life more pleasant. If you had a bad day, before you settle down to work on anything important – Organize your emotions. Emotions have the ability to control our mind, obstructing our productivity. Don’t let heartbreaks keep you from giving your best at your work.

Thinking over-and-over again of the situation won’t change it. It will do more harm than good. It’ll distract you from the urgent and important tasks.


Sorting out your emotions is necessary because:

  • Your emotions affect your behavior and productivity
  • You will be vulnerable to distractions.

How can you do it?

  • Before starting your work, take a deep breath and imagine situations as you want them to be. You’ll feel better.

There’s no point in compelling yourself to go through a hurtful situation twice, isn’t it?

But the question still stands, how do I control my emotions in long-term?
Here’s how.

2) Plan out the day

Why it is important?

Our mind thinks around 2,500 to 3,300 thoughts in an hour. 90% of which are repetitive and 80% of which are negative. That’s enough to give a person mood swings for the whole day and to set us off from achieving our goals.

A properly planned day will keep your mind calm and help you achieve your goals. Apart from that, we will have a record of our progress. It’s a sure way to know whether you are progressing or deteriorating.

  • Calms your mind: Planning out your day tells your brain that you have planned proper set of actions to attain your goals. Thus, preventing it from getting panic.
  • Record of your progress: Apart from keeping your mind calm, planning before hand would help you keep a track of your progress. You can the days when you went super lazy just by flipping couple of pages.

How you can do it?

You can use an A4 size sheet, notebook or anything for the purpose. I prefer to use a diary.

Brainstorm a quick to-do list. Include everything that needs to be done. Don’t forget to mention your day-to-day life tasks. Now, distinguish between those tasks based on urgency and importance, and prioritize.


Always remember 80/20 rule!

This is called Pareto Principle. According to which, our 20% or actions determine the 80% of outcomes.

Usually, most of the tasks on our lists are interlinked. Find out that one task that would get most of your work done.


  • Create a to-do list
  • Prioritize
  • Keep an “unexpected tasks” section

3) Avoid multi-tasking

Why is it important?

Don’t put aside your phones and laptops, rather discipline yourself to overcome the urges to go back to them again and again. I mean, most of the time, let’s be frank, you do NEED these gadgets. So, why not fix the root cause of this problem?!

I don’t know if you have ever observed that it’s not the notifications that distract us, but a lack self-discipline.

We are often tempted to multi-task, and to be honest, it does seem to work. However, it does more harm than good. It makes us less efficient, takes us more time than required to finish a task and it may even drain our energy.

  • Breaks the work-flow
  • Takes more time to finish a work than required
  • (may) Drain your energy

How you can do it?

Though, I would suggest you to gradually discipline yourself, there are some quick fixes too. You can turn off the push notifications or keep your phone on the flight mode – depending on the type of work.

  • Turn off the push notifications – youtube, whatsapp, instagram, facebook etc.
  • (If possible) keep your phone on flight mode

4) Divide and conquer!

Why is it important?

The efficient way to finish a difficult task, is by breaking it down into small pieces. Simplying tasks in this manner, keeps the mind from getting overwhelmed. As the work is small, you are more likely to finish it and thus, reach your goal.

  • Keeps your mind uncluttered. Helps you from getting overwhelmed.
  • Efficient work
  • Makes it easier to reach the goal

How can you do it?

Make a to-do list and include work and every day tasks. Prioritize the tasks based on their urgency and importance. Always focus only on the task given at hand.

  • Brainstorm your to-do list
  • Distinguish between urgent and important tasks
  • One task at a time.

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5)Take ‘short’ breaks frequently

Why is it important?

Working for long hours on your desk can affect cardio-vascular, musculoskeletal and even your cognitive skills. (By Cognitive skills, I mean Creativity and logic.). It would be better for your health if you take short break of 5-10 mins after each work session. This relaxes your mind and strengthens your creative and logical skills.

  • Reduces stress and makes you more productive
  • You’ll fresh studying and you’ll be able to focus for longer time
  • Strengthens cognitive skills

How can you do it?

I, personally, prefer using Pomodoro Technique. Getting started with a work, is difficult part. Pomodoro Technique helps you overcome that problem. It ensures your mind that if it focuses on a task for 25 mins straight, then it will be rewarded.

Make sure that you do something other than working during these breaks. To make this step work even more efficiently, reward yourself with something positive during these breaks.

  • Pomodoro Technique
  • Clean your room during long hours
  • Try to make your short breaks, screen off

Conclusion

Above all else, be accountable and disciplined. You should be compassionate with yourself but, don’t let yourself get away with laziness every time. Be accountable for your actions and discipline yourself enough to do the tasks that need to be done. There will be some resistance initially, but if you follow these steps in correct manner, you’ll find yourself being more productive.

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