Can you believe it's December already? 2019 has certainly flown by, and while we can almost hear the sleigh bells ringing in our ears; we know it's time to knuckle down for the final push towards the Christmas cut-off, and enjoy some time off to experience Melbourne's 'summer'.
With so little time left before our office closure date on December 20, these are the top tips we are using to make sure we maximise our time, and leave our customers over-the-moon with all their commercial furniture, office fit-outs, custom joinery and re-upholstery needs:
1) Quit Multitasking.
Psychologists have found that by trying to get more done in less time, the opposite actually tends to happen. Given we are living in a world full of distractions (helloooooo smartphone...), it has been found that we are much better off completing ONE task, at ONE time, and then being able to put a gigantic tick on our 'To-Do' list.
We've said it before, and we're saying it again: Quit multitasking.
2) Make A List Of The THREE Most Important Things That Need To Be Done...
And do them FIRST!
It's easy to lose our heads over all of the tasks that need to be completed before the Christmas cut-off date, and with that comes stress, pressure and a sense of overwhelm. If we can create a daily list of top priorities and get them done first however we will:
Feel a sense of achievement
Feel positive about our ability to get more things done
Feel less pressured by the HUGE list you feel like you have
Stop sweating the small stuff
GET. THINGS. DONE.
3) Give Up On 'Perfection'.
We get it, we all love to do our jobs to a high standard, and stress over the minor details so we can feel great about our work. However, when push comes to shove, these 'little perfections' can leave us feeling overworked, underpaid, and crushing our self esteem if we later find we've made a mistake. Like... writing a blog, and later realising we've made a silly little grammatical error, then slap ourselves in the forehead, wanting to sink into the ground.
While perfection is something we all love to strive for, it helps not to beat ourselves up about the minor mistakes, and congratulate ourselves for getting the task finished on time, in full, learning the lessons, and moving on.
4) Exercise Before Work.
One study, has also deduced that early morning activity can help with deeper sleep, making us more refreshed each day! While another study has proven that exercise actually reduces stress hormones such as adrenaline, and cortisol, helping us ease into the day with focused vigor - no coffee required.
5) Chunk Time.
Have a list of emails to reply to? Do them together.
Presentation to finish? Do it to completion.
Quotes that need to be done? Do them now.
Research shows that our levels of concentration have diminished with the rise of smartphones, social media and the amount of technological, emotional, and physical distractions we have in our lives. We are naturally more multitasking centric, and it decreases our ability to be productive.
In another research study, it has been proven that if we can learn to chunk our time to finish related tasks; we will get them done with less mistakes, in less time, and feel a greater level of accomplishment at the end.
Little tip? Try setting a timer for one-hour, and hone in focus during that time.
6) Celebrate Successes.
Our ever increasing workloads can be burdening, with stress level heightening, and deadlines constantly looming. While this is part of our modern day worklife, we can find little ways to reduce stress and stay focused - like celebrating a win or success! This can be anything from finishing a report, getting a quote out, closing a sale, or having a clear inbox; and every LITTLE success in a busy time, should be celebrated to keep our confidence soaring, and focus stable.
Want to know some ideas how we celebrate? Go and buy a coffee, make a cup of tea, go for a walk in the sun, sneak a sweet, high-five a colleague, check the socials, write a haiku, post a note on our desktop saying how awesome we are, tick it off the 'to-do' list, or simply acknowledge it, and get refocused on the next task.
7) Turn Off Notifications.
Close the inbox, lock phones and tablets in a drawer, and try putting some headphones on while listening to 'focus music'.
Tuning out to distractions is a lot harder than it used to be, but it's still achievable by ensuring we don't have timely notifications pop up on our screens that attract our attention and cause cortisone levels to rise. If we can close down all the things that aren't relevant to the task at hand; we've got a winning strategy to GET THINGS DONE.
8) Keep A Notebook Handy.
Ideas can pop up at any time; Kev could pop into our space and throw numbers at us that need to be remembered, Ethan could interrupt us with a new furniture fact, or a customer could call for some work they need done.
In order not to lose our focus, and stay within our 'chunked time' allotment, write things down, and review them when the task at hand is finished. This way it's out of our heads and on paper; it doesn't interfere with our current train of thought, and, we won't forget it needs to be actioned.
9) Just Start.
Sometimes we wait for the perfect opportunity, situation or condition to get started for the day, and working away from an office environment can prove to be an even bigger hurdle towards procrastination.
However, if we pick a time the day before that we HAVE to start. we tend to hold ourselves accountable, be more targeted in our morning routine, and sit down like-a-boss to actually get goals achieved.
Following these 9 tips for success is a sure fire way to stay on top of your pre-Christmas workload; be cool, calm and collected, leave the office at a reasonable hour to make the most of the great weather, and take friend and family up on the ample social invites that pop-up.
As a closing note, our office will be closed from Monday 23rd December, until Monday 13th January, but as always, you have our urgent contact details if and when you need them.
Have a great Christmas season, and we look forward to celebrating the start of a new year with you in 2020.
Wishes in wellness,
The Balance Team