How to Stay Productive: Simple Rules to Be Organized

Many people face problems in organizing their activities and time management. These methods will help you become a more productive person and increase efficiency in various areas of life.

What Is Productivity

Productivity is a person’s ability to efficiently and effectively perform tasks, and achieve goals in a particular area in a certain period.

Being productive means:

  • Using time and resources effectively to accomplish goals.
  • Avoiding distractions: aimless social media browsing and procrastination are some of the biggest threats to productivity.
  • Being able to delegate tasks to focus on personal priorities.
  • Being able to manage emotions and notice your emotional state: too high a level of stress can have a negative impact on performance.
  • Taking time to rest and take care of ourselves: without proper rest, we risk exhaustion and burnout.

What It Means to Have a Productive Day

The concept of a productive day may be different for everyone, as productivity is subjective. For some people, doing one or two things out of a planned day is already an indicator of productivity. For others, only the day when you have time to do absolutely everything you promised yourself from working out in the morning to playing at the casino live online for real money after a long day at work is considered productive. The main thing here is not to get carried away by hyper-productivity.‍

In general terms, a productive day is a day when you were able to accomplish what you had planned and can be described as efficient enough.

‍Psychologists say that productivity isn’t only the number of things done but also our attitude towards them. It turns out that someone can do a lot of work and consider himself productive, and someone who gets up a few hours earlier or does one important thing can also consider their day a success.

It’s also important to realize that you can’t be maximally productive all day long. Many people strive to maximize their efficiency all the time, but this is not in line with human nature. Studies show that humans are only maximally productive for about three hours a day.

What Is Efficiency

Efficiency is a person’s ability to organize space and time, to spend resources, and to organize their behavior in such a way as to get the maximum result at the minimum cost.

Efficiency and Productivity: What’s the Difference

Productivity is how much of what we planned to do in a certain amount of time, while efficiency is how well it was accomplished.

How to Increase Productivity

Define your goals:

  • Answer the question, “What do I want to accomplish and why is it important to me?” Being productive means having clear goals, which allows us to focus on what’s important and stay motivated.
  • Compare your goals and results only to your own: comparing yourself to others lowers motivation and self-esteem, which negatively affects productivity.
  • Don’t strive for perfection and allow yourself to make mistakes: perfectionists think in an all-or-nothing framework where every mistake seems fatal and every success is devalued. This prevents you from feeling productive and effective.

Use time and resources wisely to accomplish goals:

  • Focus on one task: Chase two birds and you’ll never catch one. This is the same with multitasking in work or study, when we spread our attention over several things at once.
  • Use planning and prioritization techniques such as the Eisenhower Matrix, the 1-3-5 method, the energy list, or the Ivy Lee method.
  • Divide large tasks into smaller tasks to avoid procrastination.

‍Work on improving your concentration:

  • Use the “Pomodoro method”: work intently for a set amount of time, taking short breaks.
  • Use apps that limit social media.
  • Learn to control your thoughts and emotions: negative thoughts and unpleasant emotions often interfere with concentration. Learn meditation and relaxation techniques.

Productive Mornings: Where to Start the Day

Morning is the time when we can set the mood for the whole day. That’s why it’s important to create an atmosphere that helps you stay positive.

‍Here are some tips:

  • Prepare for the next day in advance: from the evening write down for yourself a list of things to do tomorrow.
  • Don’t set too many tasks; set one important and two minor ones for the day: this way you avoid the stress of multitasking and can accomplish everything you set out to do.
  • Don’t rush to check email and social media in the morning: this can make you late or ruin your mood. Better take time for yourself: do some exercise, listen to your favorite music or think about what good things the day has in store for you.
  • To get rid of the past day’s problems or negative thoughts, write down your worries in a diary, a kind of emotional container that will help you recognize and process your worries.

The Most Productive Time to Work 

Psychologists and researchers have no definite answer to the question, “What is the most productive time of day to work?” because everyone is different. Most studies show that about half of the respondents are more productive in the morning – from 9 to 12 o’clock. However, the other half of respondents are more active in the afternoon or even in the evening.‍

So to figure out when you’ll be more productive, observe what time of day you feel more energized and focused.

Increase Productivity in Different Areas of Life

Productivity in Your Studies

Set goals. Identify specific objectives for the school day or week. Write them down and break them down into smaller subtasks so you have a clear understanding of what needs to be done.

Create a schedule that suits you and stick to it. Make a schedule for each day, marking time for school, homework, activities and rest. It’s important to take your body into account: some people learn better in the morning and others in the evening.

Observe how you get information more easily:

  • Write notes or use mind maps if you are more comfortable with visualizing information.
  • Discuss information with classmates if you find it easier to hear.
  • Incorporate more practice into your studies: practice helps you memorize material better. Over time, information is moved from active memory to passive memory and is difficult to retrieve. Therefore, to avoid forgetting material, participate in discussions with classmates, reread notes or write articles related to a difficult topic.
  • Remove distracting things from your desk: find a specific place to store them, such as in a separate box or closet.

Productive Vacation

Listen to your needs. Create a list of things that are guaranteed to make you feel good and relaxed. Choose items from this list and dedicate vacation time to them.

Plan your vacation: to get the most benefit, plan your weekends and free time in advance.

Diversify your leisure time. If you like to watch TV or scroll through your social media feed in your free time and you don’t feel rested at all afterward, then it’s time to find new, more active leisure activities. Try adding a gym or trips out of town with loved ones.

Set boundaries for work and rest. Sometimes we forget about scheduled rest and keep returning to work tasks after hours. Turn off message notifications and try not to think about work when you’re on vacation.

Get outdoors. Studies show that spending time outdoors and communing with nature has a positive effect on a person’s mental state. Plan walks in the countryside or parks to relax and energize yourself.

Try new recreational activities. Maybe a new sport, dancing, cooking or needlework. Discover the world and enjoy the variety.

‍Productivity at Work

Start keeping a daily planner. This will help you plan important tasks.

Organize your desk. Put things in their proper place so you don’t get distracted by searching for them and can work more comfortably.

Try to make the work process more interesting. Think about how you can be creative in your work.

Don’t work just for results or rewards. This can reduce your motivation. Learn to enjoy what you do. Think about how you benefit yourself, your organization, or even the world at large: it may help you understand why you love your job.

Don’t overload your head with ideas. If you have an idea that doesn’t relate to what you’re working on, write it down in a notebook and forget about it for a while.

Don’t take too long a break from your work. It will take time to get back into the swing of things. If you do take a long break, try not to do anything that distracts you from the task at hand.



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Emma covers dating and relationships for Unfinished Man, bringing a witty woman's perspective to her writing. She empowers independent women to pursue fulfillment in life and love. Emma draws on her adventures in modern romance and passion for self-improvement to deliver relatable advice.

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