The #1 tip to boost your writing productivity: Track your word count.
The concept behind this is that what gets measured, can be improved. If you only write in fits and starts, you won’t see your progress.
Try using the timer on your phone. I set a goal for my writing such as, “I’m going to spend the next hour writing.”
I devote myself to that one task. My timer helps me stay focused. I try my hardest not to get up during that one hour.
There’s a time management technique called pomodoro which means you time yourself for specific intervals, say 25 minutes and take short breaks in-between. The idea behind this is that frequent breaks can improve mental agility.
This may work for some, but I perform better when I have a chunk of time such as 60-90 minutes. For me, frequent breaks can be like multitasking where I find it hard to switch between tasks often.
Try both methods and see what works for you.
Morning Routine / Morning Writing
There seems to have been an explosion of books on the topic of productive morning routines. I first read about the importance of morning routines from Tim Ferriss when I read Four Hour Work Week. He also talks about it frequently on this podcast, The Tim Ferris Show.
When I had a day job that required me to commute, a morning routine was never something I had time for. As soon as the alarm went off (or after several snooze sessions), I was up and getting ready for work. There was no time for thinking, exercising, or anything other than getting out the door.
After I was laid off, I experimented with morning routines and discovered I enjoy them. Over time, I whittled down my routine to a few important things:
Walking on my treadmill repeating my daily affirmations (I have them on my phone in the notes area).
Five minutes of meditation.
One hour of writing.
How are you using your mornings?
Studies show that batching similar activities at once can result in greater productivity. For example, you could spend two to three hours creating social media posts that you could schedule to be posted for the entire week using a tool such as Hootsuite or MeetEdgar.com.
Overwhelming evidence points to the fact that our human brains can’t handle switching tasks often. Batching tasks such as preparing blogs or social media posts is something I’m working on improving.
Try this with tasks that you especially dislike. Whether it’s opening your mail, creating invoices, or running errands, designate a chunk of time each week to handle these tasks at one time instead of doing piecemeal.
If you’d like more tips about productivity, be sure to sign up for my free e-Book by clicking the link below.
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