Give your mornings a boost with these 9 productivity-enhancing things to do at work

Mornings are the best time to set the tone for a productive day. It’s not just about what you do when you wake up, but also what you do at the office. If you want to achieve things and stay productive, you need to know how to best maximise the time you’re at the office – you still want to lead a balanced lifestyle! Here are our top productivity tips to give your mornings a boost and to help you start the day right.

1. Clear your head

If you have too many thoughts filling your head, they’ll only distract you. Anxious about work, your big to-do list, or the rush of the daily commute can often leave you feeling flustered.

Take 5 to 10 minutes at the beginning of the day to clear your mind. A short meditation session after you wake up, or early in the morning before you start your work day is a great way to de-stress and refocus on the most important things that need to get done that day.

Clearing your head will help you:

  • Increase your focus
  • Tune out distractions
  • Feel more energised and refreshed so you can tackle the rest of the day

2. Organise your to do list and prioritise your tasks

Once your head is clear, it’s important to start your day off with a clean slate.

Everyone makes the mistake of checking and getting distracted by emails when they arrive at the office instead of focusing on the important tasks first. Use the first hour of your work day to assess priorities and focus on the important tasks that need to be accomplished first.

Before you leave the office the day before, make a to-do list and stick to it. Clean up your computer screen, close any tabs or programs and shut down your computer (bonus points for helping the environment as well). Restarting your computer in the morning is akin to starting fresh every day with no distractions.

Creating a daily to-do list and prioritising what needs to be done today or tomorrow will help ensure you stay on track and nothing gets missed.

Online productivity tools such as Trello or Asana are great applications that will help you better manage and prioritise your never ending to-do-list.

Organise your to do list

3. Try the email-free morning challenge

We know this one is going to be difficult for most people, but repeat after me: stop checking your email first thing in the morning!

One of the most time consuming and unproductive things we can do first thing in the morning is to check our emails. While we understand that checking emails are an important part of anyone’s daily work routine, it can often lead to feeling overwhelmed or drive you off task. Furthermore, not all emails are created equal and trying to respond all your emails (whether urgent or not), will give you a false sense of accomplishment. You’ll feel like you’ve done a lot of work, but in reality, you didn’t get to finish that important task that was due at 11am. Now, you’re stressed and frantic.

We recommend using the first hour of the day to complete any important tasks first before checking your email.

Don't check your emails straight away in the morning

4. Set up a daily goal

Daily goals will help you plan each day and helps maintain focus.

If you’re working on a large project, break it up into smaller, bite-sized daily goals. It will feel less overwhelming and you’ll feel more in control. Asana is a great tool that lets you set up tasks within projects and you’ll be able to easily manage and track the progress.

5. Check in with your colleagues

Use the morning to catch up with your office colleagues. Instead of sending an email to get a status update from a colleague, have a quick 5 to 10 minute team meeting so everyone can catch up on business updates and everyone’s goals for the day.

Plus, taking a 5 minute break every 60 to 90 minutes and taking a walk or stretch around the office will help rejuvenate your brain, improves concentration and boosts your mood.

Check in with your colleagues

6. Be present

It sounds so simple, but being present at work both mentally and physically is the easiest way to be productive. If your mind is racing away, then it’s likely you will find yourself being distracted.

When you arrive at work, put your phone away to avoid being distracted by any personal drama.

7. Organise your workspace

A cluttered space means a cluttered brain.

Take a minute to file away loose documents, throw any rubbish on your desk in the bin and clear your desk. 75% of employees surveyed believed they were more productive when their workspace was clean. Declutter and organise your workspace and get more done.

Declutter your workspace to stay productive

8. Read the news

If your job requires you to stay up to date with current events, take a moment to catch up on current events.

Have a list of key news websites to check each morning.

If you find yourself falling into the trap of scrolling through endless webpages for hours, then it may be useful to utilise programs such as StayFocusd, FocalFilter or 1Focus that allow you to remain on a site for a certain about of time before disabling its access. That way, you can be sure to limit your scrolling time and get back to the tasks at hand.

9. Try and get going as soon as possible

Sometimes, the hardest thing to do is to just start.

If a project seems daunting, split it up into smaller attainable tasks.

If you’re just not sure where to start or if you have been putting off a project, use the first half and hour of the day to write a plan or begin the task.

That way, you have used what is the most productive part of the day to get the hardest task done. The rest of your day will go up from here.

If you’re looking for more productivity tips, check out our other blog on wasting time at work. Did you know that making a few adjustments to your workplace can also help improve productivity?

 

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