Busyness is a man-made phenomenon that leads non-productivity. It is the act of constantly being busy yet getting nothing done – the act of being bombarded with activities yet being utterly unproductive.
Busyness can be regarded as a disease that robs many of the ability to truly live. The seemingly short hours of our day are crammed with activities that we barely get time to bring to completion – new day – same old cycle. We cram as much as we can into our seemingly limited time.
It is clear that being busy is by no means the same as getting things done, yet we get trapped the cycle over and over again.
Just about everyone can relate to the experience of being so busy that we could not spare a precious minute, yet at the end of the day the accomplishments just don’t add up.
There are many factors that contribute to busyness, but the main cause lies in one’s failure to lay out the tasks that need to be done and focus on the one(s) that matters the most.
A few common symptoms of busyness and non-productivity:
- Worrying today about tomorrow’s busy schedule.
- Being annoyed with people who never seem to be as busy as you are.
- Your evenings are spent worrying about all the things you failed to get done for the day.
- A lack of concentration on present conversations because you’re mind is occupied with all the things that need to be done.
- Your car becomes the place you can spare a little time to eat
Affected by busyness? Here are a few ideas you can use to pry your life out the endless cycle and finally become productive.
Lay out the task you need to get done for the day, and place the most important ones at the top. Work your way down the list and do not deviate. A failure to prioritize your daily activities leaves your affairs open for the world to prioritize for you. Make solid decisions at the start of each day and dictate the direction of your daily activities.
Cut out time wasting – We are often guilty of being busy avoiding what needs to be done. From the dreaded phone call to the annoying report you may intentionally be avoiding, cut it out the stalling tactic and nip time wasting in the bud.
• In an effort to fulfill the space created by our time wasting, we actually invent another task that is really menial to anything that needs to be done. Take note of your customary stalling – they actually become a habit – checking emails, cleaning your desk going to get coffee. Once you know what these are you will be better able to stop yourself from doing them.
2. Avoid a Long To-Do-List
A long list of things to do so is a turn-off so simply keep your list short. Only lists those things that need to get done, and focus on getting the top 3 or 4 things done for the day. Don’t cram your day with activities.
• Use the Pareto Principle which implies that 80% the work that needs to be done can be accomplished with 20% of the appropriate actions. You will be amazed at how much you get done when you pay particular attention to the most important tasks.
4. Get rid of the extras
Drop activities that you do not have to be engaged in – charity, clubs, even partying. If it’s not something you enjoy doing, stop doing it. You’ll find yourself with some spare time to do what really matters to you.
5. Put a Limit on Each Task
Limiting the amount of time you spend on one task will force you to be efficient. The fear of failing will become your drive to accomplish the task within the set time. You’ll be more inclined to get the most important tasks done first.
6. Evaluate Your Performance
Let self-evaluation become a daily task. Look back how busy you were for the day and how much you accomplished. Once you create your shortlist and stick to it, your daily evaluations will show good results.
Leading a full life is not equivalent to a busy life. Once you learn to prioritize you will be able to enjoy a full life as opposed to a busy one. You will gain from accomplishing major task, rather than having many unaccomplished small tasks. You will get much more done in a short time.