If there's one thing we love more than anything, it's efficiency.
Making an impact without adding more hours to our work schedule. Understanding what works best for us as individuals and catering our life to those systems. Knowing our cycles and when we're most productive (and when we're not). Detoxing from busy work and focusing on what's actually moving the needle in our business. Doing less but getting more done.
We're #obsessed with finding hacks that allow us to be more efficient. We're even more obsessed with trying out techniques that get us to that sweet spot of optimal efficiency throughout our days.
And look, we're not saying you need to hustle hard through every hour of your life. Definitely not! There are plenty of times where it's necessary to zone out, relax, and take a break from time management. But there are also times when you're needing to buckle down and get sh*t done…
For those days when you have a million things to do or you simply want to efficiently master an hour of your life, try these techniques!
The Pomodoro Technique
Think of the Pomodoro Technique as a sprint-then-rest type of deal. The main idea is to strictly focus for a certain amount of time, and then to rest for X amount of time. Rinse and repeat.
Here's how it works: you have a ‘focus time' where you put away all distractions (yep, including your cell phone, email tabs, even music if it distracts you). You enter optimal focus time and set a timer for X amount of time. We suggest trying this for 30-60 minutes depending on your optimal focus flow.
After the timer goes off, it's a short rest time (about 5-10 minutes). Ideally, during this rest time, you're not mindlessly scrolling Instagram or busying your brain with a new “task.” Instead, you're doing a few yoga poses, closing your eyes to breathe, standing in the sunshine, or nourishing yourself with our favorite energy-boosting Creatine lemon water – something that refuels you.
The whole idea is to work in short bursts of productivity and then allow your mind/body/soul a break that most of us don't get nearly enough.
You can repeat this method throughout your day or until your task list is complete. We also use this technique for larger projects since it breaks things up. It's a whole lot easier to jump into a huge project when you see it in small chunks instead of never-ending.
If you're the kinda boss who likes to write things out, this Productivity Planner is BossBabe approved! You can not only prioritize your tasks daily but use your own form of The Pomodoro technique to time-track everything in one place.
P.S. Don't forget to take a longer break for lunch or whenever you're feeling burnt out.
Say whaaaat?? Ha! As women, and especially millennial women, we are taught that multi-tasking = success… which is exhausting, isn't it?!
It's also a little crazy when science says the opposite. Single-tasking is proven to be better for your brain AND it lowers your cortisol levels. As this article notes, “we finish about 50% less when attempting to tackle a few duties at once, instead of focusing on each one individually.”
Say it with us: single-tasking = success.
This technique feels like cheating but it's the furthest thing from it. Because time is money! And it's the one resource you can't get back.
As you go throughout your day, think about all the things that you're currently doing that someone else could do. Here are a few things that come to mind:
- Grocery shopping
- Researching successful launches (p.s. here's how!)
- Copy editing for your latest course
- Blowdrying your hair
- House cleaning
- Graphic design
- Meal prep
- Facebook ADs for your company
If there's something that you don't love to do or aren't great at, delegate that task so you can remove it from your schedule. This might involve budgeting a little bit harder or scaling your business to improve your income (we can help with that one!), but it is SO worth it.
Then spend that hour doing something that will actually improve your life – financially, mentally, or emotionally.
Airplane Mode / Do Not Disturb Mode
If you're looking for a very simple way to get more done in one hour, pause the notifications, girlfriend. Turn your phone to ‘Airplane' or ‘Do Not Disturb' Mode and put it in the other room.
It's pretty incredible what you can accomplish when you aren't constantly teased by IG Stories or texts from your BFF.
Batch working is a fancy way of saying to focus on one area of life at a time. And we love to batch work!
Instead of jumping from a work call to the laundry to making dinner to replying to emails all in one hour, batch likeminded tasks into different chunks of your day – or week.
For example, check your emails 2x a day, once in the morning and once in the afternoon. Run out for all your errands on the same 2 days a week while you're already out and about. Schedule all calls for the same 2 days so you can be in communication mode. Have dedicated writing or strategy time so your brain can stay focused. Shoot content 1x a week so you don't actually have to wash and do your hair more than once a week (no judgments here!).
By grouping tasks, you're essentially single-tasking and you'll be amazed at how much more you can get done. And more importantly, how much better you FEEL!
So, how will YOU take advantage of the next hour?
If you're looking for more ideas, don't miss these 15 Productivity Habits from female entrepreneurs around the globe.