Top 10 “Hacks” for 2018
With the New Year come new resolutions that we all make to help ensure this year is OUR year! Unfortunately, it seems most of these resolutions seem to melt away with the snow come spring and we are back to old habits. I have personally struggled with this year after year but this year is a bit different. I recently had the joy of becoming a father and while it has been an absolutely wonderful experience, it has also sucked up the very little free time that I had in life.
As a result, my resolution for 2018 was to utilize so-called “life hacks” to help make both my personal and professional life as efficient as possible. Below are the top 10 tips I received and have started to live by. None of them are major changes and all are incredibly simple, but as I have started using them I have found the results to be incredible.
Without further delay, here are my Top 10 “Hacks” for 2018.
1. Alerts – off!
As a millennial, this is one of the hardest things for me to do. Between e-mails, texts, and social media updates, the thought of turning off my phone and computer alerts gave me a bit of anxiety but it has absolutely paid off. I even went as far as to turn off my Outlook e-mail notifications in order to help me concentrate on the tasks at hand. I can attest that doing this only for a couple of hours will already help you to save lots of time and concentrate much better within this timeframe.
2. Half-hour meeting limitations
Another secret of higher productivity is dealing with long and inefficient meetings. Although there is almost no chance you could cancel all meetings at all (and no sense as sometimes they bring a lot of benefit), there is a possibility to make them as effective as possible by breaking the standard “one hour – one meeting”. Make your largest timeframe in your schedule for only 30 minutes and you’ll see that people would consider this enough to discuss upcoming email marketing strategies or new sales prospecting tools since they don’t have another choice.
3. Small breaks every hour
This piece of advice is as old as the first office workspace but people still forget about it. Creating small breaks is one of the most essential conditions for higher productivity. Not only do you let your body get some rest every now and then, but also the change of activity stimulates your brain much more as if you’ve been focusing on the old same task for hours instead of trying to increase your reply rate.
4. The good of scheduling
Every single time-management practice has it in the first place: schedules, schedules and once more – schedules! Having the things you should do in front of you does help. You cannot forget some points of the plan if you can see its full version, you cannot accidentally have overload of tasks because you can spread your work in advance according to the plan you have and the deadlines you are to meet.
5. Task prioritizing
Though this point is only #5 in this plan, it is actually the most important thing you should do. Prioritizing your ongoing and future tasks gives you the best possible advantage of putting off/delegating unimportant tasks and getting done the most essential things right from the start. Take some time to prioritize your tasks in the order of importance and then make sure you follow this very order when completing them.
6. No-internet mode
This advice turns out to be the most difficult for people who tend to use network constantly even if they use it for work-related purposes only. Turning off Wi-Fi on every single device can sound cruel for some of us, but I guarantee this is one of the most efficient productivity hacks I’ve ever met. No matter if you use World Wide Web for checking your mail, watching funny YouTube videos or creating perfect email marketing strategies, as soon as you turn if off at least for a while, you will start working much faster and focused.
7. Two-minute rule
The two-minute rule is simple and well-known. In fact, it has the following idea: if something can be done within 2 minutes, you should do it immediately. Of course, there are times with plenty of 2-minute tasks which is not the reason to keep doing them for the whole working day, though let’s face it’s a rare thing and usually you have only several of that kind. The philosophy of this hack is rather simple: you get rid of small tasks that keep your schedule busy because of their quantity, not because they are so time-consuming.
8. More is less
More is less productivity hack has its unbelievable advantages: when you say “no” to majority things offered, you save your save whole eternity of time and strength to work on something really important. This lifehack is strongly related to the one with prioritizing. Refuse doing at least half of tasks you have at the end of your everyday priority list.
9. Go out for a while
Make sure you don’t spend every single moment of your working day in the office or at home researching new email automation software or simply working overtime. A little walk has never hurt nobody especially if you job means you should sit or stand at one place from nine to five (or even later). Though walking cannot substitute decent exercise regimen, it can really help safeguard you from common “office space diseases” and enhance your productivity simply by making your blood run through your veins faster.
10. Delegate everything you can
This advice is also not going to show you the whole new world, but it is something people do not think of in the context of everyday work. One of the most beneficial advantages of our century is the opportunity to delegate almost everything to narrow specialists or just helpers. Fiverr.com, Odesk, Elance and just some guy next to you willing to earn extra dollar are good enough to delegate at least some part of your everyday tasks without having much money spent. For sales people, it can also include using email automation software, giving out part of man-only routing tasks and delegating communication routine to sales prospecting tools.
I hope these tips will help some of you the way they have been helping me. Regardless of what your 2018 goals are, I wish you all the best of luck and look forward to seeing you at our next event!!