No matter who you are, no matter what you do and no matter what you're tying to accomplish, if you want to increase your productivity and get more done in less time, you owe it to yourself to try this one simple thing.
I think it's the best productivity tip ever.
It's so simple. Whatever it is, turn it off.
You can accomplish great things when you power down the electronic devices in your life. Here are a few examples.
Power down your computer:
You may start off doing legitimate research, but in between Google searches, so much is happening on your computer you can't keep your focus: instant messages, new emails and 20+ Facebook notifications. Maybe you eventually get your project done, but chances are, because of many distractions on your computer, you spent twice the amount of time you really needed to. Ugh!
Some people just can't resist the fun of their computer and spend hours and hours sitting in front of it. As a result, they get very little accomplished. Here's a true story. I know someone who went to his computer to send an email for work and ended up spending 3 hours watching country music videos on YouTube. Oh brother! It probably took less than 10 minutes to send the email and the other 2 hours and 50 minutes were wasted. What a shame.
Don't let that be you.
How in the world can you get work done when you have so many distractions? Well, you can't. For this reason, when you've got a list of things to do, you can improve your focus and increase your productivity by simply powering down your computer once your work is done. Send your email. Turn off the computer. Walk away.
Give it a try...you've got nothing to lose but your time.
Power down the television:
Watching television is easy to do and takes no effort...it is a guaranteed productivity killer for both kids and adults. Here's what I mean...
As it is, kids are some of the
Don't think I'm just picking on kids though...adults are just as bad.
Working professionals wake up exhausted every morning because they stayed up too late watching TV. Why? Perhaps they were binge watching an entire season of HBO's The Leftovers. What else could they have done in those six hours? Uh...a whole bunch!
Power down that TV and you're sure to be more productive.
Power down your cell phone:
Nothing can divert your attention or wreck your productivity faster than an noisy cell phone. Of course, you can screen your calls or let voice mail answer for you, but most often, people can't resist the urge to take a phone call. A ringing phone is like magic- it instantly takes a hard working, good intentioned person and stops them in their tracks. So, the recommendation is simple, power down the phone and resist the urge to take that next call until your work is done.
By all means, if you just can't bring yourself to power off the cell phone, be sure to turn off the ringer. Otherwise, your brain will be scrambled each and every time your phone gives you a ring-a-ling to notify you of a new text message. No kidding, just last night, in the course of about 15 minutes, I received 39 text messages from my daughter's soccer coach and 32 text messages from friends trying to make arrangements to meet for dinner. 71 ring-a-lings. Seriously?
Adults and kids can get more accomplished than ever before, just by unplugging, shutting down and silencing electronic devices. There are many more reasons to turn off electronic devices than the ones discussed here, but the point is clear:
if you want your productivity to go up, you have to power down.
Technology is a useful servant but a dangerous master.
Christian Lous Lange