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Bad Habits That Destroy Your Productivity

By: Ali Zaki

We all have our ups and downs when it comes to productivity. The age we live in has given us access to limitless information, all thanks to the internet. But it has also diseased us with limitless ways to procrastinate. Here are five habits that you may find yourself guilty of doing without noticing, that seriously hinder your productivity. Ali Zaki teaches us how to get rid of these bad habits.

1. Snoozing Your Alarm

Getting those extra 15-30 minutes of sleep in the morning always seems like an undeniable idea in the early hours of the day. Surprisingly though, several studies have shown that getting fragmented hours of sleep prior to getting up makes you more prone to feeling sleepy and impaired during the day. Most studies show that getting seven to eight hours of straight sleep at night is the optimal condition for you to feel refreshed in the morning.

The Solution

Always set your alarm at the exact time you need to wake up, this reduces the likelihood of hitting that snooze button in the morning. And the earlier you go to bed, the more likely you would naturally be woken up by your biological clock.

To make that happen, wake up at the same time every day, that way your biological clock would sync, possibly even eliminating the need for a morning alarm altogether.

2. Multitasking

People usually say that multitasking makes you more productive, as it lets you get more tasks out of the way simultaneously. In reality, multitasking may not be the hero we once thought it was.

Our brain is not capable of having two thoughts at once. Working on two tasks simultaneously really means that we are constantly shifting our focus between one task and the other, which drains our mental capacity.

The Solution

The simple solution to multitasking is to stop doing it. Break up your tasks into a to-do list, and allocate time to each task, providing you a way to keep track of your time and progress.

This would seem tough at times when you have too much to do with too little time, but you will find that giving your full attention to one task at a time would boost your overall productivity, and you’d get things done at a much faster rate.

3. Not Prioritizing

It’s in our nature to get the easier tasks out of the way before getting to the more difficult ones. Research has shown that our willpower dwindles throughout our day, so leaving the difficult tasks till the end actually leads to less productivity.

The Solution

The best thing to do here is to start out with the most tedious tasks first and get them out of the way. This will provide you with enough momentum to finish off the easier tasks and call it a day. Mentally prioritizing what you have to get done, based on difficulty, will significantly help you achieve this.

4. Having a Disruptive Environment

Technology can be our biggest ally, but it can also be our biggest foe. Resisting the temptation to google that song name that’s stuck in your head, or to sneak on to YouTube for a quick two-minute video can easily transition to hours of work wasted, and we’ve all been there. All those lost few minutes add up.

The Solution

It’s simple, create an environment for yourself that does not allow you to be disrupted. If you need to do tasks online, write down what you specifically need to get done so that you don’t veer off course. It’s very easy to pull out your phone for a quick twitter scroll, but putting your phone away during work time, and only using it during breaks, will allow you to productively thrive significantly.

5. Bad Diet

This may seem like an insignificant factor when we talk about getting work done throughout your day, but this statement can be backed up scientifically. It may seem that eating junk food or skipping a meal is more time efficient than taking the time to have a good meal, but the result is the opposite. Junk food gives you energy spikes that die down and makes your energy levels crash.

The Solution

Eating healthy, consistent, meals and staying hydrated throughout the day keeps your energy consistent and allows your productivity to stay consistently positive in the long run. When you take a lunch break, have it away from your workspace, the change in scenery will also considerably aid in boosting your productivity.

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