Most of the things that impact productivity exist in the office. However, how well you’re able to work isn’t only impacted by office setup or the apps you have. Your personal life can also have an influence on your productivity.
Though plenty of people say that you should try to keep your professional and personal lives separate, that’s not always possible. What we do outside of the office can impact what happens inside of it.
Here are 6 key things that impact productivity… and some tips on how to overcome them.
Whether you’re a morning person or a night owl, you can’t expect to work well if you’re running off just a few hours of sleep.
If you’re going to deliver your best work, then you’ll need to be fully refreshed and energized. If you find that you’re spending too much of your time tossing and turning, then make some changes.
For example, studies have shown that limiting the amount of screen time before hitting the hay is useful. So is drinking a relaxing cup of tea (which I do before bed) and meditating (which I’ve started to do before going to bed).
Also… take another look at your bedroom: is it as conducive to sleep as it could be?
How You Start The Day
You won’t be productive if you’re spending the first couple of hours at the office just trying to wake your mind up.
In an ideal world, you’d get started with work you’ve mapped out for the day the moment that you walk through the office door. That won’t be possible if you’re rushing around and getting to the office without a plan of action for the day.
So either plan tomorrow the day before or wake up a little earlier than you usually would. Doing either of these things – or both – will give you time to read, eat a healthy breakfast, and just enjoy the morning. Then you’ll find that you’re ready for action when you hit the office.
If you want to work well when you’re at the office, then you’ll need to have a greater command of your life outside of it. Being social to a point is fine – and is essential for your well-being. It’s when things get off the rails that the tides can turn on you and your productivity.
Drinking too much alcohol is where this can really take hold. Doing this will make it impossible to work productively – it’s not easy to work with a hangover. While this can happen, if it’s becoming more frequent then you need to take action. It’ll be essential to cut down. You can use some addiction resources if you find it difficult to stop… or if you think you have a problem.
Even if you don’t have a problem with alcohol, it can be beneficial to drink less often – or even stop altogether. As much as I like to have a good beer or cocktail, I keep that kind of socializing at more of a minimum these days. Doing that has helped me give more focused attention to my intentions better than before.
Many of us have gone through some personal issues in the past couple of years – myself included. And though we might be nearing the end of the pandemic, it’s not as if problems won’t pop up from time to time. They’re just a part of life.
And they can really begin to impact productivity in your professional life unless you take steps to prevent that from happening. If possible, you should try to put problems aside as best you can when you walk through the office door. Do that even if that office door is just down the hall from your bedroom.
If you can’t do that and find you’re overwhelmed by these personal problems, then try to take some time off work. It’ll be better to spend a week giving dedicated attention to these problems rather than trying to juggle everything personal and professional all at once.
Some people were already working from home when the pandemic hit. (I’ve been working from home for over a decade now.) But once we were in the throes of the pandemic, far more people were working from home than ever before.
While it can be nice to work from the comfort of our own home, there can be issues with productivity. This is because our homes generally aren’t set up for work.
If you have to work from your house, then try to create a space that will help you to work well. You might be tempted to work from your bedroom, but steer clear of that. Trust me on that; I speak from experience. Instead, set aside a small space in your home away from the bedroom. That’s what you really need to do.
As well as your physical well-being, it’s important to focus on your mental health.
If your mental health isn’t as on point as it could be, then your work will suffer. For example, you might find it hard to focus. Or you’ll feel drained of energy earlier in the day than you should.
There are plenty of ways to improve your mental health. Meditation, working out, eating well, and spending more time in the great outdoors are great places to start.
And that’s where I’ll end things with you. While you can try to tackle more than one of theses areas that impact productivity… don’t. I encourage you to start with one and expand from there. The last thing you want to do is overwhelm yourself along the way to more productive days, weeks, months, and beyond.