The most successful people in the world don’t get to be where they are by pure chance. Luck, determination and talent all play their part. But there are also a few essential daily habits that help people in business perform at their peak, day in and day out.
These strategies can be instantly adopted by anyone and have practical benefits for any type of job. So, if you like the idea of becoming more efficient, focused and productive in work, here are 5 strategies that you can implement today.
1. CONFIDENCE BOOSTING STRATEGIES
In the words of American author and political activist Helen Keller, “Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.”
It’s an idea that’s certainly true in business. Many of the most successful people in business integrate confidence-boosting strategies into their daily routine to help them perform. Why? Because they realise a huge chunk of success comes from being able to approach each situation in a positive and confident mental state.
Confidence is a state not a trait so absolutely anyone can do when you have the tools.
One idea for an instant feel good boost, is to grab a pen and paper and write down a time when you felt totally confident in your abilities. It might involve a great presentation you gave or a project that went incredibly well. Write down how it felt, what you did and how you can adopt that positive mindset once again.
You could also listen to a piece of music you associate with a happy time or read through a great client testimonial. Reconnecting with a positive experience from your past can give you an instant confidence boost in the present, which can transform the way you think and feel about a new situation, potentially changing its entire outcome.
2. REGULAR EXERCISE
Most of us appreciate that staying in shape is good for our health and physical well-being. But beyond these more obvious physical gains, regular exercise has been proven to help us in some other amazing ways, including boosting energy levels, improving mood and aiding better sleep.
These kind of benefits mean that when it’s time to get to work, you’ll be physically and mentally at your absolute peak.
Motivation an issue? Try establishing a regular routine. Richard Branson’s key to productivity involves getting in a daily session of tennis or swimming. While an article by Forbesdescribes how Apple CEO Tim Cook stays in shape with a vigorous regime of hiking, cycling and gym sessions.
But exercise doesn’t need to be that full-on. Simply going for a brisk 20-minute walk on your lunch can be enough to help clear your mind and offer a range of health benefits.
It will also make you more productive.
3. AVOID UNNECESSARY DISTRACTIONS
The most successful people in the world realise that time is the most precious resource they have. And they understand the necessity of blocking out the countless distractions that compete for their attention.
When you need to focus on a project, try to disconnect from anything that might interrupt your flow. For instance, put your phone on silent and shut down your emails.
On the topic of email, try allocating specific time slots for checking and responding to messages to allow extended periods of focused, uninterrupted work. Be honest enough to review how many emails in a day require your urgent attention and then structure your email-checking slots accordingly.
A noisy office environment can also be hugely distracting. Even if you have an office, shutting the door doesn’t always guarantee you won’t be interrupted. So if possible, consider taking yourself away from the building altogether during busy periods.
Coffee shops, co-working spaces or even the local park are great places to escape and enjoy some much needed distraction-free time.
Once regarded as the kind of New Age nonsense practiced by crystal healers and cross-legged hippies, meditation has gained some serious street cred in recent years. And these days, highly successful business people are integrating it into their days. Marc Benioff, the CEO of Salesforce.com, and Ray Dalio, the billionaire founder of hedge fund firm Bridgewater Associates, are both huge advocates of the practice.
Just 10 minutes of meditation a day can help reduce stress, improve focus and increase creativity along with having all kind of other amazing benefits that can have real implications on the way we work.
Struggling to fit meditation into your day? Try meditating on your lunch break or during your commute. For a no-nonsense introduction, check out the extremely popular Headspace series by Andy Puddicombe – a former Buddhist monk now bringing meditation to the masses.
5. WRITE AN ACHIEVABLE TO-DO LIST EACH MORNING.
The key to having a productive day starts with making a clear and focused plan. A lot of people fall into the trap of trying to achieve as much as they can physically cram into their day, flitting from job to job. But the most successful people realise the importance of zeroing in on the most essential tasks. That’s why making a simple to-do list each day is one of the most useful tools for getting stuff done.
Tim Ferris, author of The 4-Hour Workweek, recommends writing down the 3- 5 things that are causing you the most amount of stress. Ferris explains his reasoning, “If I have 10 important things to do in a day, it’s 100% certain nothing important will get done that day. On the other hand, I can usually handle 1 must-do item and block out my lesser behaviors for 2-3 hours a day.”
If you’re the kind of person who can’t help but dive straight into work, write your list the night before. That way, you can start the day with a focused plan that channels all your energy into the jobs that are really going to make a difference to your productivity levels.
Enjoy the peace and productivity!