Increasing productivity in your workspace, whether it’s a home office or an open cubicle, is so essential to effectively using your time and making the workweek a bit more manageable. These 5 strategies, focus on increasing efficacy and efficiency, and all incorporate the same themes: self-care and self-awareness – both of which are super important for healthy & positive productivity. If you’re ready to rev up your workspace, let’s get started:
1.Learn your distractions…and beat them.
Y’all, it took me forever to realize that visual clutter is a huge distraction and source of anxiety for me. Cleaning up that clutter is a great way to procrastinate from what really needs to be done since it makes you feel like you are doing something productive. Technically, yes you are, but in all reality, you’re just putting off what you need to be working on at that time. Once I figured this out, I made sure to clean up my desk space at the end of every day. Coming into a fresh and clean workspace each morning has boosted my productivity so much, especially on days when I know I there’s a ton of work to finish. So whether it’s clutter, or checking social media too often, learn your distractions and create methods that limit them.
2. Focus on your five senses.
Sight, touch, sound, smell, and taste. OH yes, the big 5 within the top 5. Sight = Creating a space you don’t mind (at minimum) but actually enjoy spending time in for work. Work is work, so it isn’t always fun. Simple touches, like a favorite pillow or fun print hung on the wall can go a long way to boosting your mood. Touch = If you are uncomfortable physically, you won’t be at your best mentally. Is your back hurting? Invest in a good desk chair, seriously it’s worth it. Mine is by Serta and it has honestly been one of the best & most important purchases for the home office. Sound = Learning what helps/hurts your productivity (see #1 again). Some people can work well with the TV on in the background, while others need absolute silence. Personally, I love to have acoustic guitar songs streaming on Pandora. Find your groove and use it to your advantage. Smell = Y’all already know how much I love diptyque candles (from this post) and 90% of the time that’s exactly what I have burning in my workspace. However, sometimes when I find I’m getting a little too cozy I will put a couple drops of lemon essential oil into my diffuser instead. Lemon is supposed to be helpful in increasing energy and focus, and I know that at the very least, it wakes up my senses and makes my space feel extra fresh. Lastly, Taste = Fresh mints in your desk drawers are lifesavers (hehe see what I did there?) lolz sorry, but seriously it’s the same idea as teachers passing out mints before tests – something about how refreshing they are promotes clarity which means better productivity for you.
If you work from home or are currently holding a job where you are required to be in a seat all day, try to incorporate movement as much as possible. Set reminders on your computer, phone, or tablet. These can either be hourly, or at specific times during the day. Personally, I set mine for 10 am & 3 pm everyday because that tends to be the time I hit a wall and begin to slump in productivity. At home, I keep a stepper beside my desk, as well as a bike desk that I purchased last year during Amazon Prime Day (SO worth the investment). If your office space doesn’t have room for either of those options, a mini cycle that fits under your desk may be ideal. This one is essentially silent; so even if you are in an open cubicle, you won’t be disturbing the person next to you. (WIN)
4. Know your tasks before you begin.
Often, if we sit down without a plan, what we had in our heads the night before turns into an hour of browsing Amazon, and another hour or two scrolling through social media and sharing funny videos with friends. Make a list, stick to the list, and keep it where you can see it. This agenda by Kate Spade is huge and holds all of my important dates as well as daily/weekly/monthly tasks & goals. I also keep a mini bullet journal in this notebook – it’s the perfect size to throw in my purse or keep in the car when I’m on the go and need to jot something down quickly.
5. Encourage yourself.
You are your own biggest cheerleader, and you are also your own worst critic. If you spent more time than you meant to checking your email or completed a task totally wrong, don’t beat yourself up about it. Keep reminders in your space that you can do this, whether through quotes, notes from friends, or even favorite photos. If you feel yourself going down the slippery slope of self-doubt even with those reminders in your space, take a 20 minute break and go somewhere else in your home or to a coffee shop you love. Learning what hurts and helps your productivity can take time, and that’s okay! Some things that work for others may not work for you & that’s okay too! You got this. (For cute DIY memo holders to brighten up your space – check out this post)
That’s the end of my top 5 methods for increasing productivity in the workspace. What are your favorite strategies? I would love if you shared them in the comments below!
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