How To Hack Your Productivity And JoyBy Lillian Daniels
Jun. 12 2019, Published 8:35 a.m. ET
Productivity and joy can be used to accelerate your progress in achieving a goal and can also positively boost your overall well-being. As you go through your workday or plan to accomplish a goal, tapping into what makes you make more productive and joyful is invaluable. Two of the biggest barriers to being able to be joyfully productive include stress and your approach.
The Stress And Productivity Connection
The idea of being productive itself can be daunting and cause anxiety. In order to make progress, ensure that your goal strategy includes how you get the project done as well when. This will contribute to your progress in a way that does not stress you out.
Give yourself permission. If you battle with productivity, try giving yourself permission to change the way in which you go about completing tasks. One example that I love is my “to do list”. I give myself a list of about five items to do for the day and constantly refer to that list. I realize that I got anxious throughout the day if I did not get to a particular item. Instead, I created a different “to do list” that had only one item on it. This allowed for me to focus and give more mindfulness to the task at hand instead of thinking of all of the tasks at once. This also resulted in a higher quality of work with the increased focus.
Replace multitasking. Multitasking is a popular strategy for getting things done but does it bring you joy and a feeling of calm when used? You may be familiar with the practice–giving yourself an ambitious to-do list each day and then at the end of the week taking inventory of what was completed. You may find it was a challenge to admit that, at best, there were a projects that were partially done. and you were not able to give yourself the satisfaction of “yes this is done!” So here is what I am trying instead.
Work until finished. Stress anxiety and chaos as can ensue at times if you do not give yourself time to just focus on the task at hand until it is finished. One benefit that is my favorite is that with this method you get to deep dive into the work. You are giving yourself permission to, not check email, make a phone call or “just tie up the loose ends of another project.” Instead you are fully engaged in the task at hand . This is especially wonderful for those things that require increased focus and attention.
One example is the Pomodoro technique which is one way to get more done by managing your time.
- Choose a task to be accomplished.
- Set the timer to 25 minutes.
- Work on the task until the timer rings, then put a check on your sheet of paper.
- Take a short break (five minutes is OK).
- Every four sessions take a longer break.
Incorporate time blocks. Allow certain times in your day or week that you allot to a specific task and match that task with a result that you will be happy with. This way you are getting closer to completing the project/goal and in turn increasing your productivity.
Joy is a term that many use very loosely but it is helpful to note and appreciate the true meaning which surpasses “happy” and begins to tap into your peace of mind. As a wellness coach and yoga instructor, I have grown to ask myself, “How can we use joy to help us evolve?”.
Track it. As you go through your day, note the things that give you a little bit of joy. These may include a text from a loved one, a certain nail color that pops. Be sure to recognize when you smile or feel happy and write down what caused the positive reaction.
Get Emotional. Ultimately, you want to get into the habit of tracking your joyful moments and then seeking to create more opportunities to do those things going forward. Our emotions can dictate our actions. When working to achieve a goal it is important to understand what fuels your progress. When you understand the actions that influence your emotions you are better prepared to get things done and also be happier.
When you are able to identify your mood and your mindset in certain decision making scenarios, you can make a better impact and become even more productive.
As you try this method note that you may find that you get the best results in an anxious state for some things or a slightly stressful state for others. No matter the case, being able to give yourself a natural pep will enhance your day, your productivity and overall quality of life
Activities To Help Spark Joy
- Looking at the sunrise with appreciation
- Listening to the comedy channel on Pandora
- Drinking some water
- Calling or texting your favorite relative or friend
As you seek to be more intentionally productive, give yourself the space and time to incorporate joy and find out what works for you. Listen to yourself, create your own activities, or try the Pomodoro technique. Much continued success as you work to make joy and productivity your way of life.