Productivity is one of the holy grails of personal and professional life for many of us. Anyone who is remotely driven, or ambitious, wants to ensure that their time is spent as wisely and effectively as possible, and yields the greatest possible return, in terms of moving them closer towards achieving their goals.

3 Productivity-boosting Tips for Work and Life

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Hard work is excellent — and very important, no less. But it is possible to work hard without being productive.

Likewise, it’s possible to work smarter, during shorter hours, and be significantly more productive, if you have the right approach to things.

Since nothing is worse than spinning your wheels and finding that all your work hasn’t moved you forward at all, here are a few tips for boosting your productivity, both in work and in life.

Record And Organize Your Thoughts And To-Dos

David Allen, the creator of the world-renowned “Getting Things Done” task management system, has argued convincingly that the human mind is great at generating ideas, but isn’t great at storing, cataloging, organizing, and recalling them.

To a large degree, productivity is a matter of being able to identify what the most significant tasks are that you could be working on, at any given moment, and then to focus your energies on those.

Recording and organizing your thoughts and to-dos — and then ranking them in order of importance — is one of the greatest productivity-boosting tips out there.

You could begin this process by using a “catch-all” digital information storage system such as Evernote. Or you could use one of the various apps designed specifically to fit the “GTD” methodology.

Then again, something as simple and elegant as a Bullet Journal could do the trick. Just don’t rely on your memory for everything.

Outsource Some of the Logistical And Admin Work In Your Life, When Possible

Your personal and professional lives will inevitably contain a fairly substantial amount of what could be termed logistical or admin work.

Stuff that needs to be done in order to ensure that everything else keeps ticking along as it should, but which nonetheless takes a lot of your time and doesn’t move you much closer towards your goals.

Outsource these tasks wherever possible. In business, this could mean relying on meeting management software or a virtual assistant.

In life, it might mean hiring a cleaner to visit your home once a week, or using a meal preparation service like Blue Apron.

Add Positive And Productive Systems to Your Daily Routine

“Systems” are sometimes juxtaposed to goals, although they don’t necessarily have to oppose one another. A system is essentially a habit or routine, which you perform for its own sake, and which will ideally move you closer towards success in one dimension of your life.

Systems are effective specifically because they become habitual, and can often be performed with less willpower than the individual, pressing tasks.

Add positive and productive systems to your daily routine wherever possible. These could be things like a daily workout regimen, or a particular approach to market research in your professional life or a specialized tool.