Have a productive day!

Have a productive day

When did you feel really productive?

We all want to be productive but how many of us are that? Living in a region where planning or the lack thereof is often criticised, productivity may be hard to achieve. Yet, there are ways you can set yourself up for a productive day.

We’ve gathered our top 3 tips for your productive day here:

1. Be intentional.

Decide how you want to spend the day the night before it actually starts. Yes, that’s right! The night before! Planning your day is often ignored. I’ve met many folks who, if they plan, they do it after checking their emails, listening to voice mails and catching up with colleagues. By then, your day has been decided for you and not by you.

Productive

2. Define your 3 top priorities for the day.

Look at your deadlines, requests and workload to establish your top 3 priorities for the day. Work on the first one, the most important priority, before you move to the second one. Once you’ve completed the second one, you move to the third one and only then would you start other work.

Your priorities can be short activities like requesting information in order for you to continue working on a report. It may be something longer like setting the strategy for the next 3-6 months for your team.Focus productive

It’s all too easy to change your day based on external influences. Now, I don’t say you need to ignore your boss’ or your clients’ request. Yet, you can identify the urgency and importance of handling their requests. In this region, many requests are made out to be emergencies and everything else needs to be dropped. In reality, they may be far from it. For me, I consider an emergency a person dying and they need immediate attention.

3. Take breaks.

Taking breaks has nothing to do with being productive you say? Think again! How productive or effective can you be after 7 hours of straight work with not a single break? No cup of tea, no bathroom break, no snack break. Your productivity declines.

Various studies found it’s better focus for a short time, get lots of quality work done during this time and then take a break. One example of this is the Promodoro Technique. Set a timer for 25 minutes and zoom completely into that activity. Once the alarm goes off, take a quick break of 5 minutes. Repeat this 4x and take a 25-30-minute-long break after this cycle.

Your eyes and mind will thank you! Re-energise by going for a quick walk around the office, grabbing a drink (remember to stay hydrated) or catching up with a colleague in the cafeteria.

To follow my own suggestions for staying productive, I’m now having my break. A nice cuppa with an apple. Today feels like one of the days where I’d like to eat more fruits. This first break for the day will be ideal to beat flies with one stone.

How do you stay productive whether at work or at home? Share your tips with the Organised Life and Mind community. We love to hear about your experiences!

Wishing you a productive day and week,
Until next time,
Agni

Take a step back and review

Take a step back and review

Review and take stock

Do you ever review how your day, week or month was for you? Last week was particularly energising for me. Things fell into place and one meeting left me in awe. I was almost mesmerised by it and stepped back to see how last week was different. Also, I wanted to see what I can take from it for the future. If you’re anything like me, you too would like to see how to multiple the feeling of amazement and super motivation.

This special meeting was a planning workshop. You’re probably going “Planning? Not again!”

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Trish’s story: Kids, studying and a new career

Trish's story study

How Trish mastered the struggles of raising 2 children, studying part-time and working a full-time job

Have you ever met those people who seem to achieve anything and everything? Trish may be one of them. Her life seems so fulfilling and no signs of any struggles. Speaking with her, we find out there’s a lot more to her and where she is in life today.

Today’s post has been written by Trish and she takes us through her struggles of raising 2 smart daughters on her own, completing her first university degree at a later stage in life and now preparing for a career change.

Today’s post is encouragement for anyone who is thinking about making a change in their life. It’s never too late to start something new!

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30 activities to do for yourself

30 activities to do for yourself

Look after yourself

It’s amazing how quickly time flies. I’m not sure if it’s because I’m getting older, if time has a different speed in this region or what it is. This week was a really good one, very productive and energising. Despite it being such a positive one, I need to look after myself. This made me think about you. How do you look after yourself?

We’ve collected 30 simple and cheap ways to look after yourself:

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A big thank you!

Thank you

We now have 350 posts

Today’s post marks our 350th post and we couldn’t be prouder of helping you every week. Thank you so very much for following us over the last few years.

Now, it’s back to you. We want to use the upcoming posts to give specific tips and tricks to your decluttering and organising challenges. What can we give you?

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Take it easy this summer

Take it easy this summer

Enjoy the slower pace

Have you ever heard of “Freizeitstress”? What?! This beautiful German word means recreational stress. Your leisure time is actually more stressful than giving you and relaxing. I’ve found many friends rushing from appointment to appointment and worse, they were so proud of being busy. How lovely was it to talk to this very interesting lady who said: “We’re taking it easy this summer!”

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The benefits of doing nothing

The benefits of doing nothing

La dolce far niente or the sweet doing nothing

When was the last time you did nothing? Intentionally nothing? You’re probably scratching your head. Why would anyone do nothing on purpose? Isn’t that just plain laziness? No! It’s time for you to intentionally do nothing and reap its benefits.

We fill our schedules like crazy. It seems if we don’t have an activity going on, we’re not really doing anything. Our mind gets into this overdrive mode. It’s so difficult to slow down and enjoy the now and then. Even doing nothing has a negative association. We have to be constantly occupied. When was the last time you queued for something and didn’t check your phone? These days, almost everyone on the metro is checking their phone or listening to some music or something else. How often do you see two people actually talk to each other while riding the metro?

Being constantly switched on, our brain is struggling to cope with not checking our phones or emails on the laptop. It’s almost an addiction to see who posted what on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. To follow the news 24/7 and to respond to work emails when waking up in the middle of the night seems to be the desirable goal. But this is really what’s good for us? Why is it so hard of doing nothing for a while?

There’s the negative connotation. We have to be doing something. After all, what’s the purpose of doing nothing. Being busy is such a great thing. It’s how we measure our success. Yet, it’s counter-productive. But can we be lazy doing nothing?

The benefits of doing nothing

Doing nothing is not the same as being lazy. That stigma is out and scientist are working on illustrating the benefits of doing something. After all, doing nothing does lead to something positive!

By doing nothing, we’re giving ourselves the opportunity to step back.

We become more creative and more productive.

We become more used to being in our own company.

We learn to live and experience the very moment.

Increase your quality of life benefits of doing nothing

Better quality of life

Scientist have even discovered that doing nothing actually increases our quality of life. Who would have thought that was one of the benefits? Having some down time, our brains have the time to digest our experiences and thoughts. It consolidates memories and reinforces learning. It also gets the chance to empty out the clutter which often occupies so much headspace.

By actually resting, your brain maintains its level of attention and stay sharp. This in return leads to us being able to discover new ideas, new concepts, see situations from a different angle, find new solutions. Our creativity is being refreshed and our productivity increases, too.

Taking a step back, we are giving ourselves a priceless gift: A better quality of life! And who doesn’t want to experience their life its the fullest and truest? Without constantly being sleep deprived, sluggish and exhausted, worried about not getting everything done and anxious about ever being good enough! Doing nothing can help you improve your life! I certainly want more from my life and if I can get that by la dolce fare niente, bring it on!

Sit back and enjoy the view benefits of doing nothing

A little exercise

Are you a workaholic or a Fidgety Philip and still want to reap the benefits from doing nothing? Start small. Turn your TV, radio, email and internet off. Set your time for just 2 minutes, just 2 minutes and start do nothing. How does make you feel? Not sure what do with your time? All these unfinished and seemingly pressing projects popping up in your head? Allow them in, recognise them and yet, don’t write them down or even do them. Try to enjoy these 2 minutes of doing nothing.

When you do it for the first time, it probably feels very odd and strange. Or at least it did for me. Do this activity for a week and notice how your thoughts and emotions change during these 2 minutes. Gradually increase your time to 5 minutes, then 10 minutes and 15 minutes. Can you last 30 minutes, a whole half hour, doing nothing?

I’d love to hear what your experiences of doing nothing has been. What was challenging? What came naturally to you? Write me a short comment below.

Until next time,
Agni

Quit your job?

Quit your job

Really quit your job?

There seems to be an increasing amount of frustrations amongst employees. Who doesn’t know those days when you’re annoyed with the boss or colleagues, having to change a client project for the 10th time or being stuck in heavy traffic to and from your office? Who hasn’t experienced a day when they weren’t bored and felt there was no room for them to grow and develop? All these little things can add to something big and then what? Quit?

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What to do after a mind sweep

What’s next after your mind sweep?

After last week’s mind sweep post, 2 readers emailed me how relieved they felt. For the first time since she could even recall, one reader finally got some clarity and felt like a ton has been lifted of her shoulders. Have you done your own mind sweep this weekend?

If you have, you may have felt overwhelmed looking at that long list. Maybe you even took a break when you saw this list becoming so long? For anyone doing a mind sweep for the first time, it can be daunting to realise how much their mind is actually occupied with tiny bits.

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Do a mind sweep this weekend

Do a mind sweep this weekend

Have you ever done a mind sweep?

One of my clients asked me how she could switch off her brain. We have decluttered her spare room and set it up as a home office. While she was excited about it, she felt she couldn’t enjoy it. Too many questions and thoughts were on her mind.

My client is a very clever lady who has a lot going on. In the midst of changing a high profile job,

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