Looking to up your productivity game? Well, you’ve come to the right place. Utilizing smart productivity hacks is a great way to push yourself to that next level.
Something to keep in mind though: productivity is an ever-changing landscape.
What worked for you today won’t necessarily work for you tomorrow. So, if you’re looking to increase your productivity, what you really need is to be deliberate with your time.
One way that I love to do that is through productivity hacks. In fact, when applied properly, it feels like my productivity levels increase by 400%!
Now you may be wondering… How did you calculate that you are 400% more productive?
Great question! And the answer is… err… a little un-scientific.
That number isn’t a cold hard stat, it’s more a feeling.
Like, after implementing these productivity hacks, I feel more productive. Am I really 400% more productive? Beats me.
But what I do know is that through these hacks I am able to get more of the right stuff done and better manage my time.
And that’s probably why you’re here too.
20 Smart Productivity Hacks I Used To Become 400% More Productive
Everyone wants to be more productive. They want to get more done faster and faster and faster.
If you stop and consider why you actually want to be more productive, you may think it’s:
- Because you want to be more efficient
- Or so that you can prove to others how hard working you are
- Or just to get things done quickly for productivities sake
But that is too small of thinking. You need to think bigger!
Understand that productivity and time management aren’t the end all be all. In actuality, they are tools that, when used properly, will allow you to create your dream life.
In other words, by effectively managing your time and by getting the right stuff done, you will be able to create an amazing life for yourself – one where you achieve your goals and become the person you want to be.
We cover that concept in depth within our productivity and time management Super Course which I definitely recommend you check out.
As far as this particular article goes, don’t see these productivity hacks as just a way to get things done faster; see them as a way to create more time for yourself.
Time that can be spent working towards your goals, building a better future, creating your dream life.
See these hacks as a way to get you closer to where you want to go!
And now, without further ado, let’s jump into the 20 smart productivity hacks I used to become 400% more productive.
1. Batch similar tasks
One of the best productivity hacks is also one of the simplest – group similar tasks together. For example, you can:
- Respond to your email
- Edit large quantities of photos
- Write down several sets of notes
Focus on one theme of tasks at a time to better utilize your focus.
2. Make a Wins List
As you go about your day, keep a list of wins that you acquire. That could be getting a task done faster, getting an A on an exam, or making a sale.
Each win you add to your list will make you more motivated to get things done. As your wins list grows longer, so will your enthusiasm to add things to it.
3. Play a wordless song
On repeat. On a loop. Play that song (or playlist) over and over again.
Is that to drive you insane? No, it’s to help you focus! One of my favorite productivity hacks is to play songs without words in them because they are known to improve your focus over an extended period of time.
4. Have a pad nearby for distracting thoughts
Distracting thoughts ruining your concentration? Have a notepad nearby where you can quickly jot ideas down and get back to the task at hand.
Doing so will allow you to remove that thought from your mind and get back to what needs to get done.
I’m a big fan of using post-its for this, but really any piece of paper (digital or physical) will do.
5. Finish what you start
Start a task. Finish it completely. Then move onto the next one.
If you’re wondering how to increase your productivity, this is one you need to keep in mind!
It’s an incredibly simple productivity hack that, if actually used, will make a huge difference in what you’re able to get done.
Next time you set out on a task, make sure you finish it before moving on. If you don’t, you are basically just piling up laundry in your head.
Having a hard time focusing? Here are a few tips to help you stay focused.
6. Take baby steps
This is one of my favorite productivity hacks – start small.
If you are working on a particularly daunting task, write down the first thing that you need to get done in order to make progress.
Then get after it.
Start small and with time you will make a mountain of progress. Oh and here’s a little help if you’re lacking motivation.
7. Find your timing
One of the best productivity hacks for executives, students, and parents alike is to find your ideal timing.
In other words, you need to find which time period during the day you are most productive and effective in.
We actually have an entire lesson dedicated to this concept in our productivity and time management course, but the basic premise is that your day can be broken down into three blocks – morning, afternoon, and evening.
In order to best utilize your time, you need to understand which block you are most effective in and then tailor your schedule to capitalize on it.
Another great method for saving time is to automate repetitive tasks.
- Hate manually paying bills? Set up automatic payments.
- Tired of physically tracking all of your expenses? Use a service that aggregates all the info for you.
- Dislike keep track of your written notes? Use an app that lets you carry them across all your devices.
Think of things in your life that you can automate, then set things up in a way so that you no longer need to deal with them.
Here are some of the best productivity apps that you can start using right away.
Similar to automating, delegating is another one of the great productivity hacks.
Because it allows you to offload some of the menial tasks that you are responsible for each day.
Whether that’s hiring a virtual assistant, leaning more on your colleagues, or using a third-party service to deliver groceries, delegate tasks out to others so that you can focus on the things that matter most to you.
10. Learn to prioritize
Figure out what tasks have the biggest impact on your life and work on those first. Then, once the important items are handled, move on to your other tasks.
By starting each day with your most important task, you ensure that you put your energy and effort towards something meaningful.
11. Wake up earlier
Try going to bed and waking up one hour earlier than you normally would.
Then use that newfound time before the hecticness of the day begins to work towards your goal – whatever that may be.
Personally, ever since I started waking up an hour earlier so that I could more effectively pursue my goals, I’ve gotten a lot more done and have moved even faster in the right direction. It’s been a real life-changer.
12. Create templates
Ah, templates. Here is an example of one of those great productivity hacks for students, business owners, busy parents, or really anyone looking to be more effective with their time.
Templates are an amazing way to save time. Want an example?
Well, if you send the same email over and over again, you can create a template instead so that you can easily insert or copy and paste right into the message.
Think of areas in your life that use the same words repetitively and create templates for them so that you don’t have to write from scratch each time.
13. Make checklists
Templates and checklists. Two amazing tools to increase your productivity.
When used properly, checklists are a great way to help you stay focused and on task. You can use them to list to-dos, chronicle your priorities, or help relieve overwhelm.
I’m a huge proponent of making lists which is why we have an entire lesson dedicated to it in our productivity and time management course.
14. Turn off mobile notifications
Spend some time digging through the settings of your phone and turn off the notifications for any apps that could easily distract you (I’m looking at you, social media).
To go one step further, when you really don’t want to lose your focus you can also put your phone in a different room or turn on airplane mode.
15. Clean your desk
When it comes to productivity hacks at work (or really anytime you sit at a desk), this one tops the list.
When you sit down to start a task or are ending your day, clean off your desk. Doing so will allow you to start fresh and tackle the task at hand with a clear mind.
And when getting organized, try not to spend too much time cleaning (ie. procrastinating). Be quick and get to work!
16. Disable desktop notifications
Similar to turning off mobile notifications, you’ll want to go ahead and disable desktop notifications as well.
The fewer things you have popping up and distracting you, the better.
17. Follow the 2 minute rule
If a task arises that will take you less than 2 minutes to complete, go ahead and do it right away.
It will be easier for you to quickly take care of it now as opposed to having it rattle around in your mind until you tackle it later.
18. Adhere to the 5 second rule
Here’s a great productivity hack if you’re running low on motivation.
Next time you find yourself looking at a task that you don’t want to do, countdown in your head from 5.
By the time you get to 0, get up and start working on it. Simple, but effective.
19. Avoid decision fatigue
Reduce the amount of decisions that you need to make each day.
Doing so will allow you to make better, clearer choices instead of trying to decide while in a fog of fatigue.
Plan things out ahead of time, put systems into place, and limit the amount of real decisions you need to make.
20. Make time for you
Ending our list of productivity hacks is one of the most important – self care. You need to spend time taking care of yourself!
Make sure to take good care of you so that your mind and body are able to function at 100%.
A healthy you is a productive you. And a productive you is a you that is moving in the right direction.
Productivity hacks are a great way to get more done and better utilize your time.
But remember, they are just a tool to help you create your ideal life.
By properly managing your time, and by getting the right stuff done, you will achieve what you work towards. So get after it and start making progress in the right direction.