Posts Tagged ‘productivity’
Some time after 530 and 510 BC after Pythagoras woven to Italy and had gathered his students he would established a strict routine for his students, being Pythagoras he paid particular attention to the hours they woke and slept. On rising his students were advised to repeat the following verses:
As soon as you awake, in order lay the actions to be done the coming day.
At nightfall they were told to recite:
Allow not sleep to close your eyes
Before reflecting on the following questions three times:
The actions of the day.
What deeds done well?
What left undone?
Source: The Golden Ratio: The Story of PHI – Mario Livio
Image source: zerojay
Some weeks ago I read an interview with a Dutch Internet Entrepreneur who was launching a book on how to create a start up. I haven’t read the book so I can judge that, however what surprised me was his tip to give smokers only 23 days holiday rather than 26 days as they are 1.5 hours less productive every day. I think that he’s missed the point when it comes to productivity, and I’ll tell you why:
I was reading a Mashable item on productivity which contained some interesting things that I will turn into a slideshow on this week.
Do NOT check your e-mail for the first 45 minutes that you are in the office in the morning. […] There are never meetings at that time and most people are settling in and reading their e-mails, […] — Amanda Feifer O’Brien, Marketing Manager at Firmenich Inc.
Take the first 30 minutes to plan the rest of your day. By plan, I mean make a list of the important tasks that you need to have done today and stay focused on these items. […] Make a list of the things that you want to achieve that day and work from that list until it’s completed. — Rohan Hall, Founder and CEO of rSitez, Inc
This is an excellent way to start the day, I have been using the 43 Folders system to unplan the year, this is my scheduled backlog, and take the day folder out and add this to my daily TODO list – which I write on Post-its. While creating the initial Post-its I like to create Post-its which contain:
- Coffee Break (x4)
- Snack Break (x2)
- Mail Break (x2)
And interspace these in the timeline of the day.
On my whiteboard I arrange the Post-its in the following grid:
First I take the Not Urgent and Not Important and bin them, obviously there is no reason to do them or they would have been graded differently.
Next I estimate the time and importance needed for the Urgent and Important tasks, and split the longer items into shorter tasks. Then I start the tasks by solving some of the important short tasks first to set the tone of the day to task completion, then I process the remaining tasks in order of importance. I like to use timeboxes for each of the tasks based on my estimates.
Next I estimate and complete the Not Urgent and Important items and don’t move on to estimating and completing the Urgent and Not Important until I’m finished.
Image source: Dennis Hamilton
I have trouble remembering to do things, like going to the gym, and when I do I generally procrastinate, like hanging up the washing. *stops writing blog and goes to hang up the washing* For myself I set alarms, calendar items and reminders, for me it’s easier to remember things I do daily than anything I do on an irregular basis.
So imagine my joy when I read How to Maintain Not-Quite-Daily Habits. The article contains 5 pieces of advise to make it easier to keep your habits:
- Make it daily anyway
- Use placeholder habits
- Chain Habits
- Make specific commitments
- Turn habits into appointments
Another thing I have in the house are whiteboards, they aren’t just for developing ideas and giving presentations, but also as handy reminder pads.
I can’t remember where I got this, possibly from LifeHacker.