4 Steps to Increase Productivity and Get Less Tired

We are working longer and longer, for longer hours, and we tend to overlook the balance that must exist between recreation time and hard work. Ironically, this doesn’t always result in increased productivity. RescueTime, a software company dedicated to time management, conducted a study in which it analyzed 185 million hours computed by users. The conclusion is impressive: workers have, on average, only 2 hours and 48 minutes of productive time per day. And the rule holds even if they work at least an hour away from the office on nearly half of the weekends of the year.

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“Three decades ago, the typical workday was 8 hours a day, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and the worker was free before and after,” says Larry Rosen, a professor in the department of psychology at California State University who specializes in the effects of technology on productivity. “Since cell phones came along, this separation faded and technology brought additional tasks, such as checking email and social media.”

And it’s a serious thing. According to RescueTime, workers check messaging or email apps every six minutes. In each of these interruptions, it takes about 20 minutes to return to the initial state of concentration.

This is why many companies have workaholic employees who don’t deliver meaningful results. People tend to want to multitask at the same time, under pressure, and this is the perfect recipe for disaster.

When it comes to millennials, the situation is even worse. A study by Adobe revealed that, contrary to the stereotype that this generation spends their time on social media or messaging apps, they are the ones who use email the most outside of work. It’s common for them to respond to emails from their cell phone in bed (70%), from the bathroom (57%) or while driving (27%).

The importance of a good night’s sleep.

Doing small intervals is just as important as maintaining focus during a task. Some studies indicate that people tend to maintain focus and energy for longer if they take breaks of 15 to 20 minutes for every 90 minutes worked.

It is a period that coincides with what medicine proposes: approximately 90 minutes is the natural rhythm of our body to alternate between a state of alertness and rest. However, these breaks are nothing like what we are used to doing, as they must be free of technological stimuli, such as checking social networks or watching videos on YouTube.

“The idea is to breathe and relax. You can take a walk around the block, or even inside the office, to rest your body,” says Larry Rosen in his book The Distracted Mind: Ancient Brains in a High-Tech World, which featured American neurologist Adam Gazzaley.

Start with productivity.

Do you find it difficult to concentrate to produce? You can start with these four habits:

Working and Eating
Stop doing this.

Habit 1.

Researchers recommend getting a good night’s sleep. Without those much-needed 8 hours of sleep, your day will hardly be productive. A productive routine has no shortcuts and tricks in this regard.

Habit 2.

Make a list of the day’s priorities in order of importance and take a few minutes to think about how you’ll approach them. If something unforeseen happens, it will be much easier to decide what you can leave for later.

Habit 3.

Once you have the plan, head to an environment with as few distractions as possible. For example, you can go to a room free of TV, noisy people, or where there is a great deal of food.

Habit 4.

Set certain times to check your social media and messages. You’ll know it’s working when the alarm goes off and you’re so focused that you won’t want to know about distractions.



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