Frank Salvatore
Health and Lifestyle

Simplify Your Life to Increase Productivity

November 1, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

The two leading causes of stress in today’s world are finances and work. Financial stress impacts the health of Americans, because fewer people are able to seek out healthcare due to a lack of money. Money also creates conflict in many marriages. While you have no control over the economy of the country, you do have control over your productivity, which can reduce your stress levels in the long run.

Living a sedentary lifestyle and only having interaction with technology, without proper sleep or nutrition all reduce productivity and overall work and life satisfaction. While all of these factors are important for improved productivity, it one’s interaction with technology that can create the most dramatic change in stress levels in the shortest period of time.

Keep Your Inbox Clean

Many people use email as their primary form of spend communication with superiors, colleagues, and customers. To help reduce this, write shorter emails, leaving out greetings and signatures that are already obvious to the recipient.

Also, keep the message short. If your email requires over three lines of text, it may be best to contact the person on the phone and have a conversation. It is also important to not use your email account as a day planner or to do list. This means that you should not receive notifications all day to open the most recently received emails. Rather, check your email throughout the day at designated times and keep it closed while you are focusing on other tasks.

Use Your Brain

By understanding how your brain works, you are able to improve your productivity. While many believe that multitasking is a desirable skill, that is actually not the case. All of the neurons in the brain are interconnected, and the reflexive area of the brain only deals with the present task. This allows you to have abstract thoughts.

However, the archiving part of your brain stores memories. When you are actively thinking, you are not simultaneously archiving. This only happens when you take a break from thinking, such as when you are asleep.

Focus on a Single Task

When you stop and concentrate on one task rather than let your brain be overwhelmed with various messages from the internet or other interactions, your directed focus will increase the potential that you will be successful in your task. According to studies, when your thoughts are interrupted, it can take up to two minutes to get back on track.

When you get distracted, your brain moves your task into its temporary memory, bringing a new task to the forefront of the brain. Unfortunately, you are unable to prioritize your temporary memory. This causes the first memories that enter, are also the first to leave.

Technology

People believe that with the use of technology, we are now supposed to multitask. With constant email alerts, push notifications, and multiple apps on your phone, you may be under the impression that you can keep track of it all. Now that you understand that this is not the case, it is important to develop new skills to increase your productivity and reduce stress. Focusing on a single task allows you to block out extra things on your to-do list, allowing you to be fully productive on one task.

Strategies to Reduce Interruption

Some strategies that can be implemented to reduce the numbers of interruptions throughout your day include:

  • Turn off your cell phone
  • Sign out of social media
  • Check your email only three times per day
  • Be brief in communications
  • Declutter your environment
  • Stay present
  • Focus on your health
  • Work when it is quiet

Being able to compartmentalize different areas of your life will help you to focus all of your efforts on one thing at a time. Having fewer distractions will reduce the number of mistakes you make and ensure that your quality of work is as high as possible. Make a conscious effort to stick to a schedule in order to be productive throughout the day and stop wasting time trying to stay on task.

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Frank Salvatore