Category: Life Skills
Created on Tuesday, 27 April 2010 16:20
Written by Elaine
With the amount of work placed on your desk before you start work, from emails and meetings to colleagues' queries, the bombardment of senses is enough to cause a headache even before take your seat.
Over a period of time, this feeling of constant stress and chaos may lead to a detrimental work attitude. Hence, here are some simply tips to simplify your work life and maximise efficiency.
You do not have to do all of the suggested - just pick one as an experiment. If it works, keep it and make it a habit before embarking on another.
1. Start your day with a cuppa
Rather than start your day frazzled, take a step back by treating yourself to a cup of good coffee or tea at the start of the day. This could help set a good tone for the day.
2. Organise your Workspace
If you find yourself returning to a mess of a table every workday morning, chances are that it is high time to organise your workspace.
Why spend the extra time and effort looking for stuff; it might leave you frustrated and sap unnecessary energy out of you. Besides, just the mere sight of the clutter might distract you and as a result, decrease your efficiency level and even cause stress.
A good way to do this is to clear your clutter is to remove everything off the top of your desk. Select only a few essential items to replace back on desk. Everything else should be filed, passed on to someone else or dumped. Have a neat filing system with labels and tabs to better locate your documents.
3. The Pomodoro Technique
Ironically, most people would equate long working hours to more work done and even greater productivity. The Pomodoro Technique advocates quite the opposite.
Instead, it suggests to limit the hours spent on a single task or set a limit of about six hours a day to get the essential work done. Knowing that you have limited time to complete your list of tasks forces you to be efficient.
The basics of the Pomodoro Technique, which is commonly used for both work and study, is to:
a. Work for 25 minutes
b. Have a five minute break
d. After two hours, take a slightly longer break of about 15 minutes
Using a timer is preferred as it keeps you from getting distracted whilst keeping track of time.
4. Plan on Paper
In order of priority, put your action items on paper and start with the most pressing. Having a tangible list and checking items off it keeps you focused and organised. However, have no more than 5 things on your list; the longer the list is, the less motivated you will be.
Use this list to single-task. Start and keep to item number one, focus, complete it and check it off your list before moving on to the next instead of jumping all over. Avoid checking your emails or phones in between your tasks. Instead, set routine times for them. Be ruthless about clearing distractions and you will find that all these small pockets of time can add up significantly.
5. Sleep Well the night before
It is widely known that having sufficient sleep is part of a healthy lifestyle and for the females, it is better for your complexion as well as your mood. Work-wise, enjoying a good night's rest is great for productivity and image as an employee. Bosses wouldn't like to find out they employed a living dead as an employee.
6. Start Now
Research has shown that it takes 21 days to change an habit and to adopt a new one. So what are you waiting for? Start now. Related links: Basic Stress Relievers
, The Pomodoro Technique