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Productivity Series: Productivity Hacks part I

Happy New Year! I hope you’ve all had a nice and relaxing time over the holidays and are now ready to have a truly productive 2016. In this first post of the year, I want to look into some of the real life productivity hacks that real people like you and me swear by in order to get things done.

Real Life Productivity Hacks

There are a number of fantastic productivity hacks out there. As always, it’s about finding the ways and methods which work for you – and not about being railroaded into doing things a certain way.

Inbox Zero

Inbox Zero is a concept developed by Merlin Mann over at 43 Folders and is considered by many to be the Holy Grail of email management, but people are not necessarily using it in the right way for it to be effective. Many people take it too literally and think it should be taken to mean that there is nothing at all in your inbox, but Merlin Mann actually described it thus:

“It’s about how to reclaim your email, your atten­tion, and your life. That “zero?” It’s not how many mes­sages are in your inbox–it’s how much of your own brain is in that inbox. Especially when you don’t want it to be. That’s it.” – Merlin Mann

To find out how you can start using the Inbox Zero concept – and see how it can become a truly fantastic productivity hack – head on over to:
43 Folders – for the complete series of articles

Five Simple Ways to Increase Productivity

Over at Lifehack.org there is a whole section of articles on Productivity Hacks and I cannot recommend it highly enough. One of the simplest, but most useful articles is the one on the “5 Ways to Increase Your Productivity“, which lists many of the things that I have been writing about for the past year:

1. Plan your day
2. Establish a routine
3. Prioritise
4. Take breaks
5. Ensure a healthy mind and body

In addition to this there are a wealth of other articles such as: 8 morning habits to enhance your productivity, 14 things productive people do in the first 15 minutes of the workday, and 4 powerful ways of doubling your productivity (without coffee).

Use The Right Tools!

Whether you swear by technological helpers such as apps or you’re a complete luddite, it’s important to find the right tools to help you become more productive. Finding just the one or two tools to use is probably one of the most effective and efficient productivity hacks. There is no point in having to rely on 15 different apps, calendars, planning systems etc. as your entire time would be consumed by just keeping everything up-to-date.

Personally, I still use a paper-based planning system as it’s the only one I’ve found that allows me to get a complete overview and allows me to link my goals with my key areas and how I spend my time.

If you prefer to use your phone and the countless apps out there, the last article of 2015 provided some tips for the best productivity apps.

Hopefully these short and sweet productivity hacks will get you off to a flying start in the new year. May you be very productive (and happy and healthy)!

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