Guidelines in Creating Habits to Do Things Better and Faster

My aim is to provide you with tips in creating long term habits to enhance your productivity and efficiency. It will also provide techniques to defeat procrastination, physical tiredness and perfectionism.
Before anything else, it is important to understand that no single tip will apply to all. Accomplishing tasks quickly is a combination of balance, moderation and being both physically and mentally ready for whatever obstacles that may occur.

Physical Wellness and Health

Perfecting the technique of speedy accomplishments doesn’t just involve the mental attitude; it also requires one to be in top physical shape.

1. Rest When Necessary. When you have a headache, don’t push yourself to finish the task. The lack of concentration will make it more difficult to complete hence the time you spend being more unproductive.
2. Eat Breakfast. A lot of people are reasoning out that they lack the time to eat breakfast. This excuse shouldn’t be enough to miss it. To start the day right, breakfast is important as it gives your body the necessary energy to begin working.
3. Ergonomics and Comfort. Even your chair and table can impact your working experience. An easy task becomes complex when you’re sitting in an awkward position.
4. Meditating to Lessen Stress. It’s obvious that a stressed out person will be more bothered than focused in his work. Meditation helps in relieving tensions and stresses. A tensed body works less efficiently than a relaxed one.
5. Essential Nutrients. Brain foods, a term often used by the Biology teacher, can work wonders to keeping the mind alert and less prone to tiredness. Improve your recall and memory by eating the foods rich in Omega 3 and Vitamin K.

Foods like broccoli are a great source of Vitamin K. Gingko Biloba is also known to enhance the memory.

Mental Perspective and Attitude

Time management has been known to play a major key in carrying out tasks efficiently. How these activities are distributed and focused upon is another question.

1. Brain Mapping. This method can help you find relationships between tasks to filter out redundant workloads. An example is when research about two related topics is required to get the work done. Rather than doing it twice, allot a longer time on doing a single yet more comprehensive research assignment.
2. Avoid Multitasking. If you’re working on a project or a write-up, watching the TV or talking on the phone simultaneously is not a good idea. Broken concentration can lengthen the time designated to a task- moving the schedule of others even later.
According to some researches, multitasking can reduce a task’s productivity by 40%.
3. Task Priority Evaluation. Important tasks of the day should be planned the night before. Big projects with tentative deadlines must also have some time set aside for it daily.
4. The Scheduler. Planners, notepads and PDAs have one thing in common. They all work to remind you of the things to be done. Always take one with you just in case you need to list down important things you’re not supposed to miss out on.
5. Mental Breaks. There’s no point in overworking your brain until it feels like goo. A nice rule of thumb is to work for 10 minutes and take 2 minute break intervals. You can be taking a sip of your coffee or going to the bathroom, just make sure you’re giving your mind a breather.
6. Eat the Frog Concept. This basically suggests working on the worst tasks first before anything else. It revolves around the belief that if the most unpleasant task is done first, the rest will become easy.
7. Organization. Don’t stop with thoughts. Make your work area clutter-free. A messy environment can influence a clear mind. It can also make you waste time on trivial things such as finding where the stapler is.

Personal Outlook and Self Motivation

So you’re doing things right and adapting a proper mental state, what else is left?

1. Reward Yourself. A good job deserves a reward. Don’t ever deprive yourself of the things you feel you deserve in life. Self deprivation can make you feel less motivated in working on next tasks.
2. Slow Ride. Give it a rest on the weekends. Nobody’s expected to work like a machine. Enjoy a nice hot bath on the tub or a really slow and engaging conversation with that special someone. Eat dinner slowly or watch the stars to clear out your thoughts.
3. Learning to Say “No”. Don’t accept tasks that you think are too much for you to handle. It is better to complete jobs exceptionally than to settle with mediocrity. Given your current commitments, interruptions will just stunt your efficiency.
4. 50-30-20 Rule. This rule of thumb was originally meant for budgeting. However, it has also been found to be an effective technique in time management. The rule suggests allocating 50 percent of your time working on long term goals, 30 percent on midterm goals and 20 percent on short term goals.
5. SMART Goals. The term SMART stands for specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely. In goal creation, always have these five criteria in mind.
6. Structured Freedom. Not having a direction can cause chaos. Without deadlines and goals, life can feel unrestricted and laid-back. Accustom yourself with a schedule and stick to it. Limiting your resources can help in improving your efficiency in getting a task done.

The Top 3 Reasons Why Most People Do Things Slowly

Since we’ve established the habits to do things better and faster, let us tackle the reasons why these things are done slower. This section will also include some methods applicable to avoiding these reasons.

1. Procrastination. One of the major reasons why things don’t get done on time is procrastination. Pair it with cramming and you get caught in a giant stress mess.
If you’re prone to procrastinating, consider doing the following.
*Conquer by dividing. Start with baby steps. An overwhelming task won’t look so nerve-racking if you’re halfway through. Stop the over thinking and just start working on it.
*Take advantage of being “in the moment”. Don’t stop when you’re on a roll. Proceed to the next one available.
*Just don’t cram. Plain and simple. If you’ve been at it too long, then it’s time for a change.
*Setting realistic goals in realistic timeframes. Create clear goals and make sure to do your best to complete it with the time allotted for it.
2. Physical Tiredness. It’s inevitable not to feel physically drained. Nonetheless, there’s not a job in the world worthy of getting sick for.
There aren’t a lot of ways to tackle this problem. The best thing you could do is to keep yourself physically fit by taking care of your body.
Like the very first number in this list, be sure to rest when it’s necessary. Resting can come in different forms. You may be jogging or playing a football game with a couple of friends and it’ll still be considered resting.
4. Perfectionism. The weakness of perfectionists lie on how fixated they can get in perfecting their work. Most of the time, they’ll exceed the specifications of a project while sacrificing time that was scheduled for another task.
Perfectionism can be a hard habit to break. The first step is to accept it and learn how to free yourself by starting with these techniques.
*Time Budgeting or Scheduling. Follow the schedule. If it says you’re supposed to stop at 5:30 PM, do so. There are other things waiting in line to be accomplished.
*Pareto Principle or 80/20 Rule. Vilfredo Pareto made this principle during the early 1900s where only 20% of Italians owned 80% of the nation’s wealth. This rule has also been applied to time management. To work smart, prioritize the most important 20% of your day’s task which in turn will result to 80% success.