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Anything Goes Monday: Increasing Productivity

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With the current state of things, I have noticed that my productivity has suffered a bit. People are getting lazier and honestly, I don't blame them. With mostly everything being closed and the unemployment rising, people are spending most of their time at home watching television or spending it with family. However, this is the perfect time to learn a new skill or start something that you never had the time to do. Here are some tips to help you increase your productivity.

The 25/5 or 50/10 Method

The number one thing that has helped me with my blog and learn coding during the shutdown has been the 25/5 or 50/10 method. What that means is that you work for 25 minutes, then have a break for 5 minutes. The second option is to work for 50 minutes and take a break for 10 minutes. I have to give credit for this method to a YouTuber I have been watching, Andy Sterkowitz. While I have been mainly using this for coding, it can be used for virtually anything. I set a timer on my phone for 25 minutes, then once the timer goes off, I can use my phone for 5 minutes. The great thing about this is that if you start with a smaller chunk, you can always up the time to 50 minutes if you find yourself "in the zone." If you are going to be tempted to look at your phone, you might want to set it away from you.

On top of that, humans can only focus for a set amount of time. I have read some studies that said humans can only focus for 20 minutes, and some other studies have suggested it to be 45 minutes. Rest is important, so make sure you take those quick breaks to rejuvenate the brain!

Minimize Distractions

It's easier said than done, but one way to maximize your productivity is to minimize or get rid of your distractions. If you have children, family, or roommates, there's no doubt you will have some permanent distractions that you can't get rid of. However, if you can find a comfortable environment, such as your bedroom, an office room, or even outside of the house, that should be able to help. You will have to let them know that you are working and don't want to be distracted. Another distraction that a lot of people face is social media. There are a few things you can do about this. One way is to delete social media apps off of your phone permanently, or when you are working. There are also a few websites out there that will block social media websites for certain times of the day. This might be your best option if you catch yourself spending a lot of time on these platforms.

Find Your Reason

One thing that I constantly remind myself is the reason why I started blogging, or the reason I started to learn to code. If you want to start something new (great time to check out the Skillshare link above, hint hint), or are having a hard time working from home, write a list on why you are doing what you are doing. The why should help you find motivation whenever you feel hopeless or are lazy.

Sleep

This next one might seem counterproductive, but believe it or not, a good night's sleep will help you, your body, and your brain. The average adult needs 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night, and children need more! If you catch yourself getting drowsy during the day, or relying on coffee/caffeine, you probably didn't get enough sleep. Try sleeping for a different amount of hours each day to see what amount works best for you. You might seem fine most days with less than 7 hours of sleep, but most adults will need a minimum of 7 hours.

Checklists

During my college years, I would always create a checklist of things I need to accomplish after class. I needed to finish these two assignments, work on one page of my essay, go to the gym, and so on. One thing I love about checklists is that you can break up larger tasks into smaller tasks. As I said in my checklist example, I would work on one page of my five-page essay. Doing this will reduce your anxiety for procrastinating. Yes, there were times where I would procrastinate and leave it until the last minute, but when I wasn't as busy, I would try to work on assignments as early as possible. Also, the act of actually crossing something off my checklist was somewhat satisfying.


What do you think of these tips? Do you use any of these tips to help you right now? Let me know what you think in the comments section!

Anything Goes Monday is a new series on my blog where I talk about a topic not related to music. Anything Goes Monday will take place on the first Monday of each month. Stay tuned for more Anything Goes Mondays and let me know what you think of the segment! Check out the previous Anything Goes Monday here!

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