5 Tips for Getting Stuff Done | Enduring All Things

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

5 Tips for Getting Stuff Done

Hey, Friends! If you follow me on Instagram and watched my stories last week, you know that Wednesday was NOT a productive day for me but Thursday WAS!

So today I thought I'd bring you my tips for having a protective day. Some tips I use to stay focused and get stuff done.

*Side note: Every time I say stuff in this post, I feel like I should be using another s-word. It sounds more real. Isn't that sad. I hate that. I have always tried not to curse. When I was growing up, it was a big no-no. And as an adult, I've realized how immature and unprofessional it is. And yes, there are many words that are much worse than the s-word. And I'm truly not judging anyone. It's just, in my opinion, it's one thing to accidentally mumble (or even shout) a word when you stub your toe or something horrible happens. It's another to use it in place of another word like "stuff." And it's really sad to me that it's become so common in our society today, that even I am seeing that it sounds more real. Ugh

So when I really need to get stuff done, here is what I do. (Full disclosure: Sometimes these tips don't even work. I've had a bad habit of procrastinating lately.)
I have a bad habit of procrastinating and getting distracted when I'm trying to focus on work and get stuff done. Here are 5 tips that help.

ONE || Get dressed and ready for the day.

When I used to work from home for a tech company, I usually just rolled out of bed and started my day. But I've learned that if I actually change out of my pajamas an put some effort into getting ready for the day, I'm so much more motivated and productive. I'm not sure if it's a confidence thing or what but when I stay in my PJ's with bed-head, I just end up being lazy all day.


TWO || Use music to help you focus.

I love music as much as the next person, but usually when I listen to my favorite music (mostly show-tunes), I get super distracted and just end up singing along! So I have a few go-to playlists that sort of drown out distractions and help me focus on the task at hand. There are a lot of great film score stations on Google Play music. I love the Relaxing Film Scores station but Epic Film Scores can be good for when you need intense laser focus! I also have my own playlist of instrumental music that I keep updated with pieces from my favorite movies. I'm sure you can find similar stations and play lists on Spotify, Pandora, Apple music or whatever you use.

Oh and Pearson uses heavy metal music to stay focused. Like this one, or this one, or this one. So maybe that's more your style. To each their own.

THREE || Use a block schedule.

I got this idea from Jordan Page of FunCheapOrFree.com. Of course I did because I basically worship everything she does. But that's neither here nor there. Anyway, I pre-ordered her new program, Productivity Boot Camp, which goes live on Thursday so I'm excited to receive a lot more productivity tips from the master. But enough fangirling.

The concept of a blog schedule is that instead of scheduling out your entire day down to the minute or second, or just feeling overwhelmed because of a long todo list for the day, you break down your day into blocks. You only focus on one aspect of your day per block of time. So say you have "me time" first thing in the morning before your day really starts. You drink your coffee and watch the morning news or do your daily devotional or whatever it is from 6-8 am. Then at 8, you put that stuff behind you and you have family time until 10. You forget about EVERYTHING else and focus on your family. Then when you kids get off to school or go down for a nap or whatever, you have work time from 10-noon. You put everything else away and focus on work. Get as much done as you can in those two hours. Then from noon-2 pm, is lunch and housework time. Get it?

You tailor the block schedule to fit your needs but the concept is the same. You only focus on each aspect for a certain amount of time and block everything else out. It's much less overwhelming!

FOUR || Prep the night before.

This is something I used to try to do in high school and college because I was so bad about waking up on time. I would lay out clothes and pack my backpack the night before. I would have coffee in the coffee maker so I just had to push the button when I woke up (before programmable coffee makers). It helped so much! I tried to do all that again when I was working outside of the home but I haven't done it so much while working from home. But I've discovered lately that it helps even when I don't go anywhere!

So at night I lay out my workout clothes and I write down whatever I need to get done the next day. I try to clean up the kitchen so I don't wake up to a discouraging mess. I set out my vitamins to take first thing in the morning and just kinda get mentally prepared for what the next day will look like. It's pretty amazing what a difference it makes.

FIVE || Airplane mode and time saving apps.

I don't know about you but I am certainly addicted to social media and other distractions. It's really a big problem. I'll be working on a blog post or other project and every few minutes I click over to Facebook on my laptop or I pick up my phone to scroll through Instagram or play some Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery. So I've discovered some apps to help with this.

First of all, Stay Focused is an awesome chrome extension (but I think other browsers have it too) I discovered back when I was working from home for a tech company. You can have it block a list of websites you don't want to have access to or have it block everything except a list of sites you do want access to. You can set it up to work certain times of certain days of the week or select the "nuclear" option where it "nukes" websites starting now for whatever amount of time you set. I've been using the nuclear option lately for when I need to get stuff done and it's been great!

I know there are tons of apps out there to do similar things for your phone. They block certain apps at certain times etc. But for me personally, I either put my phone in the other room when I need to focus or I put it on airplane mode. That way, even if I pick it up, I won't be able to load anything and then I remember I'm not supposed to be on it right now.

Basically, in order to get stuff done, you have to be diligent about it and plan ahead.

I used to think that motivation and productivity just come around when they want and you take advantage of those times. But it doesn't work like that. Usually you have to make yourself be productive and these are just some tips to help you stay intentional about that.
Do you have any productivity tips to add to my list?
Thanks for reading!

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