Are you being productive?
With this whole thing going on in the world… you know “The thing that shall not be named” I thought it was the perfect time to discuss the art of getting shit done. I know most people are either now out of work and find themselves spending A LOT of time at home not knowing what to do or you are now working from home and have never done it before. I am sure you thought “Oh this is going to be sick! Working from home is going to be so cool!” It now has been a week or two and you find yourself being easily distracted while at home.
Trust me I have been there.
I am here to give you the tips, tricks, and motivation you need to get that shit done. Doesn’t matter if you are home not working or working from home. This is a post to apply to all. I have been asked a lot of questions from my readers regarding productivity and today we will be answering a few of them.
Lets start with the most obvious question…
How can I be more productive everyday?
There is not a special potion or spell you can take or say to make you be productive. Its a mindset. If you have read a few of my other posts or follow me on Instagram you know I ALWAYS start my day by waking up early. I sit with my morning coffee and watch some kind of motivational video on Youtube about self-improvement. I make my to-do list, because a daily to-do list is essential, especially being at home.
For me, I wake up every morning with the intent of getting the most important shit done that benefits my life later. I will take a little time in the morning while doing my to-do list to think of all the shit that needs to get done for this blog and for my home. I make two lists. If I can’t think of things off the top of my head I will walk around my house and look in the rooms. Physically seeing the space sparks the ideas of things to do in my head to make my life easier later.
Finding things you weren’t even looking for
Like this morning, I went to get the most sought after item in my house from the hall closet… you know toilet paper and I noticed my hall closet is a fucking mess. That is going on the list. I shouldn’t have to take out my make up box and a towel to get to the toilet paper.
I have even made a master to-do list. It is the list of everything you want to complete in your house or for work. As long as you get the most important tasks done first you can add a non-essential task to your list, like cleaning out that junk drawer that no one ever goes into, but everything gets shoved into. Just don’t spend your whole day doing tasks that serve no purpose for you later.
How to get things done faster?
It’s not about getting it done faster, it’s about streamlining your day. Making it easy for your day to flow together seamlessly. I used to be all for multitasking, but I found the results of my efforts were half-assed. Now, if I focus on one task at a time, the results afterward are so much more satisfying. I find that I don’t have to come back to that task again because when it was half-assed something didn’t look right or didn’t sit right with me.
Use a time block.
I wrote out my blog schedule to time block the most important tasks I need to do. Some of them are blocked for an hour but only take a few minutes to actually do. On Sunday evening I use the hours of 5-8p to fully plan out my content for the week. Its the time we are driving to take Mikayla home. So Monday-Sunday afternoon’s are me just copy and paste the caption to the photo being posted.
Use the 10 minute rule.
Meaning, if you look at a task and you think it can be done in less than 10 minutes go ahead and get it done. Along with this rule, I also follow the one-touch rule. If you see something on the counter and it needs to go in the kid’s room, Pick it up and put it away. Don’t pick it up and move it to the desk in their room, now you are having to touch the item twice when you could have taken the few extra seconds to put it where it goes and saved yourself a few seconds of your day to go towards another task.
Both of these can be used for work or for your home.
How to make working from home work?
One thing I have found that makes it easier to work at home is to have a designated office space. I used to work in Mikayla’s room at her dresser while she wasn’t at our house. It worked for a while, but sitting sideways on a kitchen table chair could only cut it for so long.
Your best bet is to invest in a desk and comfy chair. Perfect your set up. I had mine perfected, but since moving it has had to adjust to our current living situation. Create a space that feels like it’s your own space and feels like work mode when you sit there.
How do I adjust to working from home?
What I have found that works for me is creating a work routine. That involves me sitting at my desk with my coffee. Putting my phone away from me. It sits on the couch next to me face down on the charger. I wouldn’t be on my phone if I were working out of my home, so why make the change and have it with me. I don’t need to see the screen lighting up every time I get a notification, call or text.
While I am trying to limit my distractions, I cant work in complete silence. My office is in my living room so I will put Youtube on the TV and find a nice relaxing music playlist to listen to on low that doesn’t include songs that will distract me and make me want to put on my own concert for my neighbors. I put the volume at a setting that is low enough not to distract, but I can still hear.
Kick the family out of the room/office
If my family is home while I am trying to work I ask them to hang out in their rooms or play video games in Mike’s man cave. Mikayla has a cellphone, sometimes I will put an alarm on her phone and tell her when it goes off she can come back into the living room. If that is something you cant do right now, then adjust it to what you and your family needs are.
When Mikayla was younger I would put a movie on for her that I have already seen, so I wouldn’t be interested in watching it. I would also make her a snack/lunch with a drink. If she couldn’t sit for the whole movie, I also had coloring books and crayons available at a whims notices. Choosing silent activities definitely can entertain the kiddos. Meaning you can still watch them and get work done.
Since we don’t have Mikayla all the time I have 2 different schedules I follow. One is kid-friendly and the other is for when I am home alone. It makes a huge difference if you can have a schedule for different scenarios that could happen in your household. It seems like a lot of work, but being very organized and having to-do lists really streamline my day.
How can I have a productive day at home?
Productivity can mean a lot of different things to different people. Some days getting dressed makes me feel productive, other days it could be getting everything done on my to-do list. Only you know what the important tasks are for your house/work is. If you need some motivation I have a playlist on my Youtube channel for some of the productivity videos I like.
Somedays I am all about working on this blog, somedays I am not. Productivity varies from day to day. I evaluate the master to-do list and write my daily list accordingly for that day. Down below I will show you examples of my really productive days vs the days I slack a little because I want to spend all the time with the family.
Examples of my productive day.
Although I am running a blog from home. I thought it would be important to show how I schedule my day. As you can see here is my to-do list. Half is for work and the other half is for housework. You don’t have to do this if this isn’t for you, but I write out my day kind of hour by hour. This is not to set in stone. Things do change, this is a rough estimate of how long I think tasks are going to take me to do.
I am not trying to bounce all over the place and spend more time walking around my house than actually getting things done. I rewrite my to-do list (with notes for myself) into an hourly list so I am utilizing my time well to again… streamline my day. This is my routine for today (Friday)
I try and do the same things everyday regarding my work schedule and cleaning schedule. The only that changes is my to-do list. I give one room in my house a deep clean a day. Friday is the living room, Saturday is the outside of the house, Thursday is the kitchen. I don’t have to do too much if I have kept on my daily chores. Everything is getting done, but I’m not bombarding myself with a million things to do in one day. I focus on one room and maintain the kitchen. The rest of my day I focused on work.
On the days I am not this productive you can surely find Me, Mike and the kid on the couch in our PJs all day. There ain’t no shame in that game. There needs to be a work-life balance while working from home.
Its okay to have a “lazy” day
Hell, if getting up and putting on pants means your day is productive, by all means, let your flag fly my friend. I know I have those days. What I do may not work for you and that’s okay. You try new things and if doesn’t work move on to something else. If it doesn’t work then make it a habit of doing so. Check out my post on creating new habits, it may help you a little bit further in this being productive at home.
It’s not like I do this every day, I don’t. Let’s be clear ain’t no one want to be THIS productive every day. If you at least want to seem like you got your shit together while being home during this social distancing. I will at least recommend these tips. Get up at a decent time.
- Get up at a decent hour
- Take a shower
- Put some clothes on that is not your PJs
- Make your Bed
- Make a master to-do list
- Clean your kitchen
- Set a specific time to work
- Tackle at least one problem area in your house
- Do something for yourself to grow as a person
- Relax on your “lazy” day. Everything will be there tomorrow
We ain’t going nowhere.
I hope you guys enjoyed this week’s post and it inspired you to get some shit done, if not oh well. I tried. Follow me on Instagram and tag me in your lazy day photos. I am sure I will have a few to share. Just remember you don’t have to be productive every DAMN day, but at least make your day worth something. Get something done you have been meaning to, learn something new. Anyways, stay happy, stay healthy…
Until next time, Have a Great Day!