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Serial entrepreneur, business mentor and success coach Ryan Jackson offers us his personally tried-and-tested productivity hacks.

Most people think productivity means getting a lot done in the least time possible. Maybe this reduces your to-do list, or makes you tick off the items quicker, but what about the quality of what you produce?

Ryan Jackson recommends that you prioritise the most important tasks that will have the greatest impact and produce quality results.

For excellence, adopt these 5 life hacks, and have a productive day!

1. Stop Multi-tasking 

Juggling jobs isn’t helpful. Multi-tasking was once mooted as the cure-all for productivity challenges and business and personal success. But productivity actually decreases by up to 40{55885bba21388810f197f39d85b06badbb7f94a4f01acd4c25b3dd4556063511}, by multi-tasking.

Switching tasks means you lose focus and it takes time to get into the flow again every time you have to pick up where you left off. It’s better to dedicate some intensive time to achieving one task before you move onto the next.

2. Get Rid of the To-Do List

To-do lists are a false economy and time spent on writing and reading lists helps you to procrastinate. It might feel good to tick items off, but lists are pretty meaningless in terms of accounting for your time on tasks – either to start, finish, or to keep track of the length of time it takes you to do each job.

Lists can become an addiction – some people feel compelled to select the easier, low-value tasks to complete, just to feel the satisfaction of ticking off more of the list.

Use a diary or calendar, with deadlines to focus your time – but limit your goals for the day to 3-5 main tasks.

3. Seek High Value Return on Time Investment

Productivity isn’t about how many items you can tick off a list. It’s about achieving more important tasks and getting you where you want to be.

Avoid a scattergun effect and dedicate some decent blocks of time to the significant tasks that matter. Determine which jobs will get you furthest towards your goal.

Focus on the most important tasks first, the ones that will get you the most valuable return on your time investment.

4. Remove Distractions

Interruption is the thief of time. Focus on finishing a task and block out spaces of time and place, when and where you can work without the distraction of other people or things.

Tell staff or your team not to disturb you. Switch off your phone or mobile – especially email notifications or social media messages. Only allow the presence of helpful people or resources (calls, computer, visuals, audio) that will add to your successful completion of the task in hand.

Apps are available to temporarily block distracting websites, so use them for a fixed time of focus.

5. Develop Yourself

Multi-tasking may be a no-no, but what about making good use of time that otherwise might be wasted?

If you take the train – can you work, too?

If you’re driving, can you listen to audio books?

Commuting gives you valuable time for personal or business development. Instead of staring into space on the Tube journey, or while you’re walking to work, you could be learning new or great things, developing your mindset or leadership skills, getting inspiration, new ideas and contributing to your personal growth

“Focus on Being Productive

Instead of Busy”

Tim Ferriss


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