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When are you most productive? 

Throughout my work life, I’ve always felt that my sleep and productivity patterns were a little bit messy and getting them back on track has been a constant battle I am still tip-toeing around. As someone who worked different shifts, I had to adapt to being a night owl, which I must admit was my most productive, however, was met with constant burn out. Shifting to being a morning lark was the cause of my increase in coffee intake – mainly because I struggled to adjust and generally stay awake.

The pandemic hit the fast forward button, forcing the traditional world of work to relook at the definition of productivity. While most of us have the flexibility to work from home, being accountable to ensuring that our productivity goals are met is extremely crucial for the organisation to meet its objectives. But how does this translate in our personal spaces and work environment? How can we maximize on our productivity hours? How can we account for managing our personal time for work?

Transformation Coach, Tshidi Wa Ga Pila shares five tips on how this can be achieved.

  1. Start each day with a purpose and intention. 

Waking up is an important part of the day and it cannot be left to chance or hope. Have you stopped and asked why you are up this morning? Was it compelling enough? It must propel you to get out of bed. Your work or business is a bridge to financial means and creating legacy. It is part of what you are and who you are as a person, and so it is important to always think of a bigger perspective about your life. This will help you to focus on bigger tasks and make sound decisions. 

  1. Identify Your Productivity Hours 

We all have different productive times which is informed by different attributes, for example some people prefer working early in the morning, some during the day, and others at night. We each have to test our maximum productive time, and this may take some exploration. Once you have identified the time of day you are most productive, then start showing up at that time and be consistent in practicing, until it becomes a routine. Remember, your mind requires evidence to build a new ritual. 

  1. Maximize on your Productivity Hours

Once you’ve identified your productivity hours, ensure that you use that time wisely. Don’t work hard, work smart. To maximize on your productivity hours, consider following these tips;

  1. Start each day with purpose and intention.
  2. Assess the priority of the tasks and deal with impactful tasks. 
  3. Have planned breaks – for example set the timer to work for 2 hours and rest for 15 minutes.
  4. Limit interactions by switching of data, closing tabs you’re not using. 
  5. Don’t answer calls or emails that are disruptive to your productivity for example energy drainers, negatively and long emails.
  1. Respond Positively To Feeling Uninspired

In most times, we all go through phases of feeling a little bit uninspired which has the potential to decrease our levels of productivity. What can help is employing mental exercises and identifying what exactly the cause of this is. 

This is an important part of our journey. Feeling uninspired is a way of our internal system informing us that we are misaligned to our purpose and that we’re not being intentional about our decisions or choices. In other words, we are reactional to people’s agendas and commitments. 

When we step in and out of our productive circle – we procrastinate or self-sabotage on tasks. When you are feeling uninspired to be productive ask yourself;

  • Which part of your life will improve if you accomplish the task?
  • What transformation will you attain?
  • Why is this task important?
  • How will this task help you step into your purposeful life?

Some tasks are urgent but not important – you need to be able to reach a determination on this point. 

  1. Take Personal Accountability

It is important to reflect on your day by keeping a journal. Write down how your day has unfolded and ask yourself if this is how you intended for the outcomes. If not, what was your contribution? The first part of our transformation is to take accountability to our current state. We are responsible and accountable to our lives as we experience them today.

How Aesthetics Affect Productivity 

During Olwethu’s Instagram Live Interview on The Sit Down, Workplace specialist, Linda Trim indicated how the psychology of aesthetics and surroundings affect productivity. “We all wake up with a different mood and energy every day. We all have a different purpose and mission, and our environment dictates how we function, based on the level of comfortability. 

So how can you use aesthetics to merge with your objectives? Linda Trim recommends incorporating the following elements:

  1. Airflow
  2. Ergonomic furniture
  3. Lighting
  4. Colours
  5. Plants 

Catch up on this conversation here.

Wrapping up

As I find comfort in my phase of trial and error, mine is to keep figuring out what works best for me, as I use this information to leverage my productivity, as best as I can.