How-to Improve your Daily Work Routine in 7 Steps
Today's Editor's Picks
I’ve gone on a stint this week about increasing your productivity using to-do lists and setting smart goals for your business (to avoid stagnation). Today I’d like to get direct and to the point when it comes to motivation and productivity.
You see, these two items really simply come down to a routine.
All great individuals, in most ways, have a set routine throughout their day because it allows them to easily transition between tasks in a logical manner with very little distractions.
You see this, quite often, with athletes whom practice the same pitch, kick, or throw over and over again until they’ve perfected the technique.
Well, work is the same.
A routine also allows you to grow your skillset because of your commitment to completing a task which may be part of a larger goal. There is dispute about the 10,000 hour concept and many individuals that triumph the approach … but all you really need is a vision for the future and a path to take you there.
Here are my suggestions to improving your daily work flow through seven steps (so you can grow as a person and as a business owner):
Step 1: Wake and Jump In
The first step of your day should put you into a highly-productive mood the moment you set feet to the floor; you should feel refreshed after a good night’s sleep and ready to tackle the big tasks of the day.
- Place yourself in a positive mindset by reflecting on your past accomplishments and by taking a few minutes to do deep breathing which will clear your mind and remove the morning fog.
- Hop in the shower, scrub down, out, and dress for your day in a professional manner even if you’re working from home because this will contribute to a successful mindset.
- Take the time to cook breakfast and enjoy rising sun; use the time to think of your major goals you wish to achieve which will prepare you for the tasks ahead.
Jump right into the work once you’ve completed your morning routine.
No emails, no social updates, and no news – right into work.
Step 2: Utilize the Pareto Principle and Pomodoro Technique while Working
The Pareto Principle is fairly easy to understand:
“The Pareto principle (also known as the 80–20 rule, the law of the vital few, and the principle of factor sparsity) states that, for many events, roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes.”
This mindset will allow you to see which tasks are most vital to your daily success; they are the ones which have a considerable return on investment for the time you place into the activity.
The second is the Pomodoro Technique which is:
“The technique uses a timer to break down periods of work into 25-minute intervals called “pomodori”, separated by short breaks.”
This approach to your workflow is amazing at getting things done because it rushes you into the activity but then forces you to take a break which has psychological effects in ways that it makes you want to jump right back in rather than doing long stretches and feeling burnt out.
Combine these two to determine the most important action you can take in the early morning and then apply technique to knock it down.
Step 3: Take a Power Break
The first hour or two will be the most productive because your mind is fresh and you’ll have a great bout of motivation.
However, do take time to maximize your breaks when using the Pomodoro Technique by doing such actions as:
- Drinking lots of water to stay hydrated
- Have a snack
- Taking the time to jot down notes about what you’ve just done
- Brainstorm your next set of actions
- Relax through meditation or more deep breathing to clear your mind
A break should not involve any heavy work – use these moments to center yourself and get pumped.
Step 4: Pound Out the List
Divvy out your time and knock down the remaining items on your to-do list.
Continue working with the most difficult items on your list (as in: the ones which will aid your business & personal growth, income, and networking).
Remain vigilant throughout the process and do your best to avoid the daily distractions; if you’re having trouble with these items than consider installing a plugin that will block or restrict these time-wasting websites.
You know what to do here.
Step 5: Get Something Published
Make an effort, each and every day, to publish something, anything whether it’s for your website or your personal collection.
Content creation is a powerful skill that will allow you to grow in ways that are almost unimaginable. Once you’ve created content you can use it to build your business through search rankings, community building, networking, authority development, and more!
The content, however, may not be the first on your list since it may not have been tailored to generate a sale so use your discretion when to work on a piece (for example: if it’s a blog post acting as an update than it can certainly wait until the afternoon after the hard stuff is done).
Step 6: Connect and Build the Network
Spend at least an hour each day doing some form of networking:
- Strive to find new community members and keep them on your site
- Read and follow industry websites and social accounts later to be used to connect
- Practice exchanging value with business people to grow your professional network
Your network and community members are the individuals that will promote your work when you’re active in other areas, provide powerful feedback and response to improve the outcome of your current projects, and provide a support system for when you’re stuck on a problem.
An hour is more than enough to drop in and say “hi” to those that matter but try to keep this for the later part of the day because you have to remember that these individuals are hard at work, too!
Step 7: Reflect, Take Notes, and Prepare
When you’re winding down, getting ready to call it a day, and finished your work:
- Reflect – Bask in your accomplishments and what you’ve achieved throughout the day and what it means for growing your business and projects.
- Notes – The most productive entrepreneurs will record their process and find ways to improve their workflow which can only be done if you’ve observed your actions. Take notes about your work and find ways to combine and batch the process to save time for other activities.
- Prepare – Draw up a plan for tomorrow. Mull over your notes and write out your next to-do list while pairing it with a general goal for the day (such as increasing sales by 1%).
Go into bed with a calm but driven mind. Enjoy the night and get ready because you’re about to start it all over again – and you’re going to rock it!