So I decided that 2016 was going to be the year. You know, the year to do it, be brilliant and provide great content. I’d only done about 8 months of serious blogging, and of those 8 months, I think about 4 of them I actually started to do it more tactically.
2016 is the year. I want to knuckle down, build my email subscribers and start feeling like all this hard work is actually paying off. So I’ve procrastinated to the extreme and browsed the World Wide Web for some cheeky tips on how to improve productivity.
I generally find that I spend so much time going from the task at hand to gradually drifting onto social media. And if it’s not social media, it’s a stupid, addictive game on my phone. Infuriating. When my time is up, I’m always shocked at how little I’ve managed to achieve. Like the full-edit I’m doing on my WIP. After a whole afternoon of having my folder on my lap, I’ve done 5 chapters – and for the record one chapter is normally 2 or 3 A4 pages.
The best way to combat this is through scheduled breaks. Sit down and work solidly for twenty minutes. Reward yourself with a timed 5-minute break. And be as strict as you can. If you’re on a roll and feel like you can do forty minutes, then take a 10-minute break at the end.
2. Move around
Get up and get the blood flowing. If you take a five minute break, take it away from the computer. Staring at a screen, or sitting for long periods of time are not good for you and cause a whole host of problems. Taking a walk around the room is probably enough just to stretch out your bones and muscles.
3. Have a snack
Snacking is good for you – who’d have thought? Well that’s not strictly true but if you’re working for hours and hours at a time, it’s important to eat and keep your stamina up. Although sitting in front of a computer may not seem like a marathon race, the mental toll it takes can be overwhelming. Without sustenance, you’re at danger from simply keeling over – okay that’s a little exaggerated, but it could trigger a number of problems and slow your productivity right down.
4. Read something
If you know me, then you’ll know I’m a book nerd so nothing makes me happier than being able to tell you that reading something will in fact help your productivity. By taking time out of what you’re doing and reading a related book will help inspire and get the brain juices flowing again.
5. Talk it out
Discussing ideas, struggles and issues with someone will really help to offload the pressure you might be feeling, even if only temporarily. If you’re feeling unmotivated then talking it out is a great way to spark imagination, rediscover your motivation and encourage you to re-approach the pen.
6. Treat yourself
Rewards are perhaps the secret ingredient. If you’ve found yourself working really hard recently, then there’s nothing wrong with rewarding yourself. Whether that’s a mini weekend away, a few nights off or an evening out to your favourite restaurant. Treating yourself will help you feel like you’ve succeeded and it will keep those motivation levels high.