Productivity: Recognising and Overcoming Stumbling Blocks

by Bernd on November 18, 2013 · 0 comments

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What is left of the day, sometimes is just not enough. Time cannot be multiplied, it cannot be bought and it cannot be stopped. It’s our biggest capital. The way we use our time directly affects our contentment and our living situation. If you have the feeling you don’t utilise your time well enough, you should by all means change something. We will reveal to you here how you can find your personal path and the key to productivity!

The key to more Productivity: Finely-tuned Time Tracking

If you want to make better use of your time, you should find out first how you spent it until now. For private use, it is often enough to monitor your personal behaviour for one or two weeks. A time log can help with this. Allocate a notebook or an online document (such as Google Docs) for this task and record each activity stating beginning, end and duration.

At the end of the day, assign all activities to general categories. This way you can find out which types of activities you spend your time on. Motivational coach Steve Pavlina recommends to be as detailed as possible: ‘You should write down how much time you use for e-mails, for reading news, for surfing the Internet, for telephone calls, for meals, how much time you spend in the cloakroom. [...] I usually have 50-100 entries a day.’ At work, good time tracking is advisable. With tools such as TimeTac, you can also chart your activities accurately over longer periods of time with minimal effort. The analyses are made automatically and draw a precise picture of your productivity.

Success through small steps

You recognize your stumbling blocks, now you only need to overcome them! However, this is easier said than done. Successful behavioural changes require motivation and persistence.

Behavioural expert BJ Fogg from the American Stanford University recommends a politics of small steps in his programme ‘Tiny Habits’. He assumes that humans only adopt new productivity manners in three situations:

  • They have an epiphany.
  • They change their surroundings.
  • They take little steps.

Those who want to purposefully change their habits shouldn’t build upon the idea of a relevant epiphany in the near future. Altering the own environment is more achievable, yet it can be linked to great additional effort. A regime of small steps will slowly but surely lead you to your goal.

More about BJ Foggs’ Tiny Habits and how the approach stands the test in practice in the next article!

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