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Work Smarter

Work Smarter

by Holly Foreman - November 12, 2014

In this fast-paced world, we are full of life-busyness. It is time to find that work-life balance and find ways to work smarter, not harder.

I was introduced to this concept at a conference a few months ago. As I sat and listened, I started thinking about ways this applies to the workplace.

Whether you are in a classroom, sit at a desk or out on location, events and to-dos pop up throughout your day. While I am all for multi-tasking throughout my day, sometimes I think it causes me to work harder.

Currently, I am sitting at my desk with a large document that needs to be read. My first attempt to begin reading the document was a failed attempt because I had my email box open. So, every time my email dinged I looked up to see the email – I think I read the first paragraph about 3 times.

While everyone works differently and has different work environments, here are some general tips to work smarter at work.

1. Devote your focus to the current task.
Immerse yourself in the task at hand and try to eliminate as many distractions as possible.

2. Don’t view your to-do list in full because that can cause unnecessary stress.
Instead focus on the current task. One step at a time. Breathe. Oh and don’t forget to cross it off when the task is complete!

3. Eliminate the unnecessary.
Most of us have excess in our lives… Remove it!

4. Don’t let minor details drag you down.
I don’t know about you, but I am very detail-oriented – some might call that a perfectionist – but we have to remember to keep moving forward, complete the task, and go back to make revisions if necessary without overanalyzing it.

5. Incorporate brain breaks throughout your day.
Take a few minutes to stretch and/or exercise during the day. According to research, physical activity increases blood flow and brings more oxygen to the brain, which leads to improved concentration and productivity.

Keep these tips in mind during your workday. Utilize your calendar to designate time per task or to schedule breaks in your day. Find what works best for you and share your own tips and successes with friends and co-workers.

Well, it is time for me to go back to my task at hand… reading the large document on my desk. My goal is to close out all programs on my computer, grab my highlighter and start reading until I need my next brain break.

   

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