There’s no question that these unprecedented times are changing the way we live and work with more people now working remotely (or attending workplaces in much smaller numbers) and kids and partners at home 24/7. But these changes—while challenging, don’t have to completely sabotage your productivity or send your wellbeing out of balance.
Here are our top productivity hacks to still get your most important tasks done, come to accept what is realistically possible, and to keep your day in balance when it all feels out of whack:
Cut Yourself Some Slack
Trying to stay on schedule and be productive to the same level you were used to is very challenging (and will create additional tension). Now more than ever—remember to cut yourself some slack, a lot of slack! Your home and work environment have changed dramatically so be kind to yourself and remember that creating a new work-from-home schedule while managing kids and other loved ones is territory none of us are used to.
Create a New Daily Rhythm
Energy is a finite resource—don’t spend too much of it resisting the current status quo. While it might feel like the rug has been pulled from under you—now is the time to create a new daily schedule and rhythm. Rise at the same time, get dressed for work, and time block your day into chunks (in collaboration with others in your house) for work, exercise, relaxation, and agree on how you will share the cooking, shopping and caring for children duties.
Prioritize Tomorrow, Today
At the end of your workday, write down the top six things you need to accomplish tomorrow and prioritize them in order of importance. Known as the “Ivy Lee Method”—this simple strategy will get those “to do” items out of your head before bedtime and on to paper and allow you to allocate your energy to getting started on that first task when you are fresh (instead of wasting precious time working out your priorities).
Recharge—Away From Your Laptop
You likely have additional pressures draining your energy right now but one of the best hacks for recharging is to step away from your laptop. Run, walk, indulge in a home-cation or sit on your patio or balcony for an at-home yoga class or to meditate.
Sleep, Get Plenty of Sleep
Burning the midnight oil might seem like your only option to keep pace with work and life demands, but achieving deep sleep helps you not only meet the emotional demands of this crisis—your immune system will receive a boost, and you’ll also be more productive when your brain is rested and rejuvenated.
Schedule Time for Personal Tasks
Set aside 15-minutes of your day to knock out personal “odds and ends”—tasks that you need to take care of like paying bills, purchasing items for your home office, online shopping, or ordering books to entertain the kids. Allocate this daily to your calendar to ensure these items don’t back up, creating more tension in the household!
It takes time to settle into a new flow of life, a new way of working, and a different environment to what you’re used to. But the more you can find new ways of being productive while prioritizing your wellbeing, the more chance you’ll have of thriving during an unquestionably difficult situation.