Every day you read about hundreds of different work hacks to increase your productivity, but which one is the right one for you?
Keep in mind that there are certain work hacks that are scientifically proven to increase your productivity, while for other things you simply have to do a little bit of trial and error to see which ones work for you.
If you know what productivity is, you will know that it affects all kinds of aspects in our lives and that being more productive also brings many other benefits along the way. Therefore, we’ve put together a complete list of 100 work hacks that can help you to get things done and increase your productivity.
It’s the time when your mind is naturally most focused. Once you know when you work best, schedule some uninterrupted work time accordingly.
Multitasking reduces your efficiency and performance. Your brain is fully efficient if only focusing on one task at a time.
Background sounds contain no lyrics and help you to block out distractions, build focus and enhance creative thinking. Here’s a soundscape to get you started.
Avoid crowded places, places where a lot of people pass by, and any kind of blinking notifications, since our mind is naturally attracted by them.
Block all those sites you know you’re easily distracted by while working. This will help your self-control and prevent you from continuing bad habits. You can use apps such as StayFocusd.
Working in sessions prevents burnouts and increases efficiency. Work on just one task for 25 minutes, then take a 5 minute break and repeat. Make a bigger break after 4 sessions. Here is a quick guide.
Wearing headphones indicates to others that you are busy and it will discourage people to approach and distract you.
Make it clear that you don’t want to be distracted and simply let others know about it.
Gum increases the flow of oxygen keeping you more alert and maintaining longer focus. Check out more.
Learn to not pay attention to distractions with the spider technique. If you get easily distracted by people entering the room, try to ignore them by maintaining the focus on your task.
It helps you to focus, increase your creativity and to better retain information.
If while working you stumble upon interesting articles you would like to read, save them for later, so you can free your mind and keep your focus on the actual task. You can use apps like Pocket.
Write down time-wasting habits you want to stop and write down things you should do instead.
Make a list of all the things that pop up in your mind other than the work you’re doing, and dedicate time to them once you’re done.
Visual reminders will help your brain to memorise and keep the focus on the right things.
It enables you and your team to have a free mind and focus on your work thanks to some uninterrupted work time.
Setting a specific time will keep the rest of your day email free and thus improve your focus.
Turn off mobile phone, close your email and route your office calls to the voicemail to avoid distractions.
Having a scheduled block of uninterrupted work time, will allow you to fully focus on your tasks.
It will give you the right energy and improve your concentration. Vitamin B rich food, healthy carbohydrates and low-fat protein is the way to go.
Being well-hydrated will give you more energy and improve your mental clarity.
Low glycemic food release glucose gradually and not all at once, keeping the glucose level in your bloodstream more constant and thus keeping you alert and productive for a longer period of time. Tip: eat a banana.
Blueberries, nuts and seeds, leafy green vegetables, avocados, fish and dark chocolate are great to boost your brainpower. Here’s our guide.
Scents such as lemon stimulate alertness and revitalise the senses, making you also calmer and kinder.
Rosemary is perfect for the morning to fight physical exhaustion; cinnamon improves focus and concentration; peppermint boosts energy and clear thinking.
We made a guide of 10 powerful herbs here.
Green tea contains caffeine and theanine that will improve your accuracy and your ability to focus.
Magnesium improves learning and memory. Try some pumpkin seeds, cacao or sesame seeds.
Drink coffee between 09:30-11:30 AM and 1:30-5:00 PM when your natural cortisol level drops.
Fibres keep your energy levels uniform and help you to be more alert.
Doing this will not only make the task more concrete and actionable, but it also makes it seem smaller and easier to start.
Also called “Eat the frog“, this will give you a sense of relief and energise you for the rest of your tasks.
Telling others about your commitments will give you an extra kick of motivation to not break them.
Set a task, do a little bit every day an mark an X on your calendar. This will make your progress visible and motivate you to not break the chain!
Every time you cross a task off your list, the “happy chemical” dopamine gets released, giving you the motivation to move to the next task.
Planning a reward gives you the needed energy and motivational boost in order to complete your task. Gamification badges are great for teams.
Put up a board for quotes, pictures, goals or something you love. It will make you feel inspired and remind you about your goals.
Studies show that it enhances careful behaviour and improves fine-tuned attention.
Office friendships increase your job satisfaction by an average of 50% and make you 7x more engaged at work.
Having something to look forward to will give you energy and motivation throughout the whole week.
Making your bed first thing in the morning means you successfully accomplished the first task of the day, motivating you and helping you to build other good habits.
Working more than 50 hours per week, will produce no greater results than people who work less.
Starting is often the greatest obstacle. If you tell yourself you will work on it for just 5 minutes, you will end up getting more things done that you thought.
Having somebody to look up to is motivating and highly inspiring.
Besides boosting your energy level, it will make you more proactive, curious and rise your performance.
Writing things down will help you to get an overview and help you prioritise your tasks. Here’s a guide.
Have on your To-Do list only actionable and precise instructions on what to do. E.g. Call Tim, Write the report etc.
Having a deadline and limiting the time frame for each task will allow you to focus and get things done faster. (Parkinson’s Law)
This will free your mind and keep your To-Do list lean. Check our guide.
If 70% of something can be done by someone else, just delegate it.
If you have recurring tasks, find a way how to automise them in order to save time. IFTTT is a great service to help you optimise tasks.
Weekly goals keep you motivated and focused during your week.
Starting the day with a clear plan in mind reduces stress and helps you to focus on the right things.
Having a fixed timeframe for a meeting will force everybody to focus on the important things to discuss about.
Such gaps are great for answering quick emails, reaching out to somebody or read the news.
It helps you to optimise your time instead of wasting it by switching between those tasks throughout your day.
Schedule exact times when you are answering to emails. In-between just delete spam and check if something is urgent.
What’s done is done. If you start with a task, try to finish it.
Use dictation, it’s 4x faster than writing. Use a dictation app like Dragon Dictation to help you put down your thoughts faster.
Having great typing skills will help you to be more efficient when writing reports or emails.
It’s a challenge for the brain to perform better, thus it improves memory and the ability to build focus. Use an app like Spritz.
Adopting an email autoresponder will reduce your urge to respond immediately and thus lowering your stress level.
Having your files in the cloud provides an easy and fast access to your documents wherever you are. A great service is Dropbox.
Once a project is done, update your To-Do list, sort and file the related documents in order to start the next task with a clear mind.
Working out improves your cognitive function, reduces the reclining memory process and regulates your blood sugar regulation, making you more energised.
Small exercises boost hyper oxygenation in your brain giving you energy and making you more efficient. Take the stairs, walk to a farther bathroom, do small stretches and stand up periodically.
Play some brain games to help you train your memory and your ability to focus. Lumosity is a great app for that.
It can reduce stress levels by up to 68%.
Challenges and achievements release dopamine and testosterone which are great for motivation, energy and mood.
Hitting acupressure points like placing your finger under the top head of the shinbone (on the dip) or between your nose and upper lip, increase your energy level as well as mental alertness.
Practicing yoga will reduce your stress level, thus making you more productive.
Cold water stimulates blood circulation giving you a energy boost.
Don’t hold your breath while reading emails or while being focused. Remember to breathe normally in order to allow oxygen flow to your brain.
An expansive body posture will help you to put your mind into the right state of mind and boost your motivation.
Putting on the right clothes will make switch your mind switch into work mood and make you establish the right attitude.
It fuels your performance and ensures you have the energy to create some valuable work. Feeling unsafe makes you worry and not work efficiently.
Any temperature above 73ºF (23°C) or below 68°F (20°C) decreases your productivity by 10%. Get more insights.
It has a positive impact on your mood and your energy level. Put your monitor at eye level and your keyboard at elbow level.
Standing transmits a sense of urgency allowing you to be focused on the completion of your task.
Having things you like around you, positively affect your work performance.
Having plants nearby increases productivity by 12 percent, helping you to complete tasks with more focus and efficiency while improving also your indoor air quality.
It will positively influence your mood and mindset. Lavender and peppermint are great for relaxation and a positive mood. Check out our full guide.
Chaos and clutter distract you and limit your ability to focus and to process information.
Natural light reduces the production of melatonin and thus making you more alert. A high exposure to daylight will increase not just alertness but also increase your mood and overall performance.
Using blue-enriched white light (17 000 K) has a significant improvement in alertness, mood, performance and concentration. It will also reduce evening fatigue, irritability, sleepiness and eye discomfort.
Surround yourself with blue and green colours. They are great for productivity while yellow colours increase creativity.
It can help you to get unstuck and fuel your motivation.
Loud colleagues are the number one distraction among office workers. Seek out places that are less noisy and where you get less interrupted by co-workers.
Looking at natural landscapes, a tree or intricate architecture has restorative benefits and will recharge your mind.
It will help you to be more alert and to soak up information faster. The highest alertness is typically at 10:00 AM. Use f.lux to help you adjust your screen colour according to day and night time.
Sleep is the biological maintenance task. Lack of sleep negatively impacts mood, ability to focus, and ability to access higher-level cognitive functions. Apps like Sleep Cycle help you to wake you up at the best time.
Due to the ultradian rhythm you move from higher to lower alertness. Having short breaks away from your desk will clear your head and let you return to work more fresh and engaged.
Naps boost cognition, memory, performance, reaction times and alertness.
10-20 minutes naps are best to boost focus and productivity. Here’s a guide.
Nature has the power to improve your vitality, memory, creativity and also your cognitive function.
It helps you to de-stress and refocus energies. Good occasions are in the morning, during lunch break, at the end of the workday and before going to bed. Headspace is a great app to get you started.
Follow the 20-20-20 rule. Look away from your computer at least every 20 minutes and gaze at a distant object (at least 20 feet away) for at least 20 seconds.
It will help you to stay up to date with news and family, make you feel refreshed and ultimately boost your productivity.
Increased oxygen boosts your energy level. Open a window or go for a walk outside.
Stop, slow down and start doing things deliberately. It will help you to manage your attention, instead of running blind from one task to another.
Grab a piece of paper and write down 5-10 work hacks you want to implement right now in your work life.
Most of them are very easy to follow and it is just a matter of being conscious and having the right mindset to actually improve your productivity.
Thank you for reading!
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