Getting focused and completing tasks in good time takes effort and discipline. However, there are a couple of tricks that can be employed to make this process a tad easier. Jumia Travel, the leading online travel agency, shares 6 tricks for getting things done faster without sacrificing quality.
Learn To Time Yourself Through Tasks
Parkinson's law, one of the most crucial concepts in business, states that 'Work expands to fill the time allotted for it'. That is, if you leave the time allotted for the completion of a task open-ended, you will almost always take more time to complete it. Conversely, if you set a clear time frame for the completion of that task, you'll work far more quickly. As an added bonus, not only will you end up completing your tasks faster, you'll also feel happier about it too.
Pretend Your Day Ends At 11am
According to Forbes, an average person has done virtually nothing of importance by 11am. They have either chatted away time with colleagues, checked emails, prepared breakfast or are still planning their day. If you are able to start your morning each day, believing your work ends 11am, you'll be more conscious of what you do with those first few hours of your day and be able to fully maximize it. Create a small list of what you have to deal with, and immediately deal with those important tasks with the time consciousness that ending your day at 11am affords you.
Try To Do Unimportant Tasks Quickly
To reach a high state of achievement, you can't afford to carry out unimportant tasks within the same time as important tasks. God forbid you actually take a longer time working on unimportant tasks than on important ones. Be sure to get through unimportant tasks speedily and do them well enough that people won't complain. It doesn't have to perfect but you should do it well, after all they're called 'unimportant' tasks not 'useless' tasks. Don't give trivial tasks more time than they deserve, because the crucial ones might end up suffering; and the last thing you want is to make a mistake on a crucial task.
Do Your Most Unpleasant Tasks First
This is based on the saying that the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning is to eat the frog, and the day can only get better from then. It's a funny saying but there is some truth in it. When you tackle the seemingly unpleasant and most difficult tasks first, you find that you actually get them done faster than if you procrastinated. Also, completing such tasks makes you feel more accomplished and your mood gets a boost, which motivates you to keep going. Please note that unpleasant doesn't mean unimportant, the fact that a task is unpleasant doesn't mean it's unimportant.
Apply the Pareto Principle
In other words, the 80/20 rule which states that most of our results comes from a small portion of our actual work. Find out which part of your work has the greatest results and focus more of your energy on getting that part of the work done.
Break Your Day Up With Breaks
Taking a 2 to 5 minutes break after every 25 minutes of focused work can help increase your focus and keep your energized. This is called the Pomdoro Technique and it's great for those whose minds tend to wander while reading or working on a lengthy projects. The break gives time away from the task at hand and affords an opportunity to momentarily enjoy distractions. The break also helps to re-energize the brain for a return to the activity. However, it's important to be careful with this technique and remained discipline so as not to be carried away with the distraction.