Today’s post is written by Aymeric Gaurat-Apellii. Aymeric is a software consultant, programmer, blogger and the Founder of Weekplan, a weekly planner web application. Read more about him here

Everyone has something to advise and talk about towards their path to success. Of course, everyone believes they have something to share which can really help individuals in any sphere of life. However, making changes in your life is not the easiest things to do.

Top 5 Habits - Wake Up Early

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Staying consistent with those changes and you have successfully developed a habit. Do not get disheartened because these habits will make a change in your life steadily.

1. Wake Up Early

Having that one hour buffer time before you leave for work is essential to get you working through the day. Waking up and rushing minimizes productivity and ends up making you feel queasy. There is a reason the ‘wise’ elder people remain strict on waking up early. The production of the stress hormone- cortisol is the highest in the morning. If you rush in the morning and go lazy on the breakfast, the body ends up using up the energy via your muscle cells, the bone ligaments, and skin collagen. After the ‘emergency process’ finishes, you are left with low blood sugar and a tired body at 11 am in the morning.

Solution to this would be getting a no mercy-alarm clock with no snooze button, placed preferably away from your bed. A traditional alarm clock is the best bet as a phone in bed another distraction for an uninterrupted sleep cycle.

Planning the next morning also makes things much easier and you can go with your auto-pilot mode for choosing clothes, planning breakfast, etc.

No lights at least one hour before sleeping helps create a relaxing environment and processes your circadian rhythm in motion.

Setting yourself for an earlier time also works better if you make a 15-minute change every day. This helps create the habit rather than make it feel like an inconvenience. Do the 15-minute challenge until you meet your time goal.

Top 5 Habits

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2. Working When ‘You Don’t Feel Like’

Couple up procrastination with lethargy and voila! You have the perfect disaster in front of you, making you limp towards achieving your goals when others are running. Do not confuse your goal and menial tasks. Every now and we have to do work we slightly (or passionately) hate. But it keeps you away from the bigger prize.

Way to hack this is forcing you to work for 15 mins and chances are, you will continue working once you are in the flow. Use a timer and if it doesn’t work out, let go of it for another 15 mins and try again.

Another way to train yourself is implementing the Pomodoro technique, which is working in absolute concentration for 30 mins, taking a 5-minute break and going back again.

Breaking down tasks into smaller chunks will make the tasks easier to finish. Once you know what to do, you will go ahead and execute automatically.

3. Destroy Distractions

Before starting work put your phone in ‘no notification zone’ for an estimated time. Silent all alerts that hamper productivity like Facebook messages, app notifications, and useless widgets.

Set two times for checking your email (mainly 10 am and 4 pm) and batch works them at once. Reply to messages in one go and not break your train of thought a hundred times while working on your tasks.

What productivity means to you? How would you be more productive in life and business? How would become more cautious about the other’s needs? Do you want to join the club of over-achievers? It is easy if you know how! Read my free e-Book and you will find out what it takes to become more productive. Subscribe today and become the productive person you always dreamed of being!

Dealing with internal distractions is a whole different story. Mental habits like overthinking, anxiety and obsessing over thoughts can affect overall work productivity. Practice meditation, mindfulness, and yoga.

If you need something more exciting and faster, make it a point to run a target distance every day without fail, make time for your health and your health will make time for you. Wear a fitness band to take measure steps for your health.

4. Effective Time Management

We have an equal amount of time and must strive to stay ahead of your competitors. The only way to do this control time, not let time control you. Start practicing time management techniques like Dwight D. Eisenhower’s quadrant system (popularized by Stephen Covey), planning tasks on the basis of urgency and importance.

Classifying tasks is the battle half won, when you know you have to eat the frog (do the important and bigger tasks first), you will be left with a more productive and powerful attitude towards life and work as a whole.

Strive towards being effective and not just productive. Evaluate the value of your tasks and let go of the ones that do not seem important. Sometimes a todo list can end up being a bulk. Also, try writing a ‘not-to-do list’, this will remove the tasks which subconsciously affect your time.

Also, multi-tasking is a fallacy and it can be another reason why you end doing nothing with quality. Studies have found that multitasking reduces your productivity by 40%. Stay focused on one task and take a break if there is something bothering you.

Top 5 Habits - Time Management

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5. Daily Goal Setting

Planning and scheduling: Put the long-term goal on the pedestal and create an estimated plan towards achieving your goal for at least a month. Sort them to a week and then finally, to a day. Plan your day at the start of each week or on the weekend.

Review how much achieved and if not, do not be demotivated and take crucial steps to take care it is completed over the week. Weekly planners and organizers make your work easier to approach and if not, use the pen and paper, as it may work better for you.

Start small by having half of the goals easily achievable. It is the only way you can create the habit once you see the work gets done, and oh, crossing the tasks on completion is addicting!

Good luck, and remember, start small and go big!

Bonus: Download a free PDF version of this guide now (note: no registration required).