The case for being more productive in less time is to have more time to do what you really want to do. That’s it. There will always be over achievers who will kill themselves to work ridiculous hours, but for the rest of us, productivity tricks should take less time–not more.
Here’s the top 3 ways to get your free time back:
Get Your P’s In Order
Even if you think you can remember your tasks, write them down anyway and divide up your list into Priority-1’s and 3’s. P1’s must get done today. P2’s are projects that require your attention and everything else are P3’s. When distractions start coming at you, refer back to your list.
Use Your Power Hours
You can get approximately 3x real work done in 1-2 hours during your “power hours” that you are at your absolute best. For some of us it’s the morning, some it’s evenings. Be sure to use your power hours for knocking out the P1 tasks on your list.
Based on our biological clocks, we have a couple peaks in our alertness and energy. These times generally occur in most people a few hours after waking up and close after the “afternoon crash.” If you don’t know whether you’re a night owl or a morning person, try out the 10AM or 6PM power hours to block and focus. Biology is on your side for this one.
Block and Focus
Remember this saying: Where the focus goes, the energy flows. It’s the opposite of multitasking. By blocking off 1-2 hours of focus just for completing high value tasks without interruptions, you’ll get 3x more done–that’s like 6 hours of work done in a couple hours.