I’m going to take a wild guess and say that this is not the first productivity related blog post that you are reading. I have probably read through thousands of them in my lifetime and wouldn’t be surprised if you do the same.
Most of these blog posts talk about the same things: write down goals, make sure you wake up early, and not procrastinating. That’s the tone of most productivity related blog posts.
So I decided to write a productivity blog post that has NOTHING to do with writing down goals, making sure you wake up earlier, and not procrastinating.
Stripping out those parts of the blog post originally made it more challenging to write a blog post like this. However, in this challenge, I was able to come across certain factors of productivity that almost no one talks about.
I have a feeling that there will be at least one tip on this list that you haven’t heard before.
#1: The Music That You Listen To
Music is a big part of our culture. Songs have the ability to change the way we feel and enforce different mindsets upon us. One song can leave you angry while another song can raise your spirits.
Certain songs can increase your productivity by giving you more motivation. As a New Yorker, Empire State Of Mind is my go-to song for boosting my productivity. I listen to it when I feel my productivity is dipping.
After listening to the song, I can go back to work more productive than ever.
When you are doing your work, don’t turn on the radio. You never know what song will come on the radio and most of them will distract you in some way or the other. Instead of listening to songs on the radio as you work, listen to focus noises.
I’m talking about forest noises, rushing water, and other focus noises of that nature. There are many focus noise videos on YouTube designed to boost your productivity.
Some of these videos are over 10 hours long. The purpose isn’t for you to watch the entire video. It’s for you to stay productive while the focus noises are playing.
#2: How You Handle Stress
We all get some level of stress. For some of us, stress is rare and doesn’t ruin our day. For other people, stress is frequent and day-destroying. As the workload gets more challenging, the way you respond determines how productive you are.
Life is 10% of what happens to you and 90% of how you respond. The reason you have probably heard that statement many times is because it’s true.
The way to handle stress from your workload is to simply attack the workload. The more time you spend thinking about what stresses you out, the more the stress will build.
If something is stressing you out, just get it done. NOW.
#3: How Often You Exercise
Exercising is one of the most important parts of life. I could have said productivity instead of life, but exercising helps you in so many ways other than productivity.
When I went from middle school to high school, I thought my business would collapse because of the added workload. That was before I even joined the cross country team and got home at 6 pm every day instead of 3 pm.
So at that point, I thought I’d just wait until the summer before doing anything big for my business. What happened?
My business soared contrary to my logic.
As the school work got more challenging, my business soared even more. No, it wasn’t because I got more homework that my school did better. Just making that clear in case one of my teachers reads this particular blog post.
It’s challenging to pinpoint one reason for any business’ success since it’s usually a combination of so many factors. I like to think running every day has a significant part in the equation.
The reason is that exercising every day strengthens two things:
- Your muscles (yeah, no surprise there)
Your SUCCESS muscles (repeat please)
After analyzing successful people, watching my business grow, and running every day, I came to a conclusion. The mindset of a consistent runner is the same mindset as a successful person.
Always striving to achieve better results/times. Always looking for a way to do the same job better. Always showing up and putting in the work. Having a team around you.
In that last paragraph, you don’t know whether I’m talking about how to run faster or how to become more successful. That’s because they are both so connected.
Not specifically running, but exercising in general. Running in competitions adds that extra flair though because you get your time, and have something to gauge yourself against.
Even if you exercise with some simply stretches for 10 minutes each day, you are doing yourself (and your productivity) a lot of good.
#4: Your Health
You are what you eat. Food affects your thinking and the way you view the world. We have a different view of our work when we stuff ourselves with French Fries and when we eat a tasty, healthy steak.
Some food makes us want to tackle any work in front of us while other food makes us lazy. Becoming more aware of how you react to certain foods will help you make better food decisions for your health and your productivity.
In addition to becoming more aware of what you eat, adding certain foods to your daily eating habits will boost your productivity.
Certain foods like salmon have been proven to increase productivity (but salmon is one of the best super foods out there. It also makes you happier). Here are some other foods that make us more productive.
#5: The Technology You Use
Ever think of the computer, tablet, or smartphone you are using to read this very blog post? Ever think that your device is aging?
It’s something we don’t often think about. The only time we pay attention to it is when our devices get very slow. Once your device gets very slow, and that same device is a few years old, it’s a sign. You need a new device.
After four years, my Mac Book Pro started getting problems. Safari wouldn’t work at all every other day. Before that, I noticed my computer was getting slower.
A slower device nowadays can be detrimental to productivity. Don’t settle with a slow device. Get a new device so you can accomplish your work in lightning fast speeds.
Slow technology doesn’t only result in a decline in productivity. It also results in an increase in frustration. I made the choice to get a new Mac Book. Now I can get my tasks done faster.
#6: The Breaks You Take And Their Frequency
You must take breaks throughout the day to be productive. If you send too much time working, your productivity will naturally dip over time.
Taking a quick 10-20 minute break every 90 minutes is the ideal way to get as many productive minutes in as possible.
If you are pressed for time, just listen to a 3-10 minute song that motivates you to get stuff done. This isn’t procrastinating. Taking breaks allows you to be more productive in the long-run and avoid being the stickler at work. No one likes those.
#7: The Amount Of Stuff On Your Desk
Your desk gives you an idea of what your mind looks like. If you have a cluttered desk, chances are you have a cluttered mind. You forget to accomplish tasks within their deadlines, and all of the workload stresses you out.
A clean desk indicates a clean state of mind. It’s easier for you to accomplish tasks within their deadlines and do more than the minimum. The way you organize your physical presence affects how your mind is organized.
If you discover that notebooks and papers are accumulating on your desk, then get rid of them. Even if you designate one room and fill it with clutter, as long as you don’t see the clutter as you work, that clutter doesn’t matter.
It won’t impact your productivity in the same way a cluttered desk will.
#8: The Chair You Sit In
This is the one tip that I confidently believe you’ve never seen anywhere else. If you have seen it before, I want a link to the article.
I have worked while sitting in a variety of chairs throughout my life. But that doesn’t make me stand out at all. We have all worked while sitting in a variety of chairs.
When I took SATs, I would sit on multiple chairs in the room until I found the perfect chair for myself. Most of the time, it wouldn’t take more than two tries for me to find the perfect chair before the testing began.
If I moved, and the chair moved with me, I simply got up and went to another chair. Rocking back and forth wasn’t on my To-Do List for taking the SAT.
I look for the chairs with the cushioned seats. These chairs feel more comfortable, and it’s easier for me to focus. Sitting on a wooden or un-cushioned chair doesn’t work for me as well.
At the same time, a chair that is too comfortable will decrease your productivity. At one point, I chose to do my work on a chair with wheels. There were two problems with that choice.
The first problem is that if I slightly moved the chair, my entire body would slightly move. I had to keep the chair still so I could write blog posts. The chairs without wheels don’t give me that problem.
The second problem is that I am a teenager. When I got stuck on an idea, I would spin around and around to pass the time. In the end, I would only think of a good idea when I stopped spinning on the chair and came back to reality.
#9: Your Working Pattern
The way you work determines how much you get done. Establishing a consistent work flow for yourself will make it effortless for you to get work done.
What is a work flow? It’s simply a series of daily rituals you follow that let you know you are on the right track. Once you follow these daily rituals, it will be easier for you to tunnel-vision and focus on getting ONE thing done effectively.
Focusing on getting the daily rituals right eventually turns those daily rituals into a habit. In other words, you are turning productivity and achievement into habits. That’s powerful.
#10: The People Who You Surround Yourself With
The people you surround yourself with impact who you become. If these people are below your level of excellence, you will find yourself stagnant or on the decline.
On the other hand, if you surround yourself with people who are better than you, then you challenge yourself to become better.
When I run, I always run with the people who are better than me. That way, I get more out of each practice and run better at the meets.
I started becoming successful on Udemy when I teamed up with instructors who are better than me. And if you’ve been following a lot of marketers, you’ll notice that they all promote each other and are friends with one another.
Surrounding yourself with people who challenge you to become better will result in you becoming better. You will become more productive and accomplish your goals faster than ever before.
Productivity is important for anyone—the employee, employer, entrepreneur, parent, and everyone else. While there are the usual methods of boosting productivity, there are also overlooked factors that can also increase your productivity.
Now that you are aware of these overlooked factors of boosting productivity, the next step is to become more aware of how these overlooked factors play out in your life.
Be more observant of the people you hang out with, the music you listen to, what you eat, and how often you exercise. That way, you will know to make small changes that can have a dramatic impact on your productivity.
Which of these tips was your favorite? Do you know of any other overlooked methods of boosting productivity? Sound off in the comments section below.