Since taking my blog full time last year, I feel like productivity has been my biggest struggle. When you're at home a lot with nobody to bounce off, you need to develop a routine to balance your work and relaxation time, otherwise nothing gets done. My main issue seems to be that I have so many things that I want to do, to the point of feeling overwhelmed by it all. So I end up just sitting there, thinking of everything I want to achieve instead of actually doing it.
If you work for yourself or you need to get study done, the biggest thing you have to remember is nobody is able to boost your motivation or make you productive except for yourself! You are the key to your success. You're the only one who can make a change and there are definitely a few easy ways you can incorporate into your routine to get yourself into gear!
Wake Up Early
Every time I've slept in throughout the working week, it doesn't make me feel good. I feel like I've lost half the day, I feel more tired than usual and then I end up getting way less done than what I'd hoped.
My favourite thing to do every day is to wake up at 6am, the same time as Daniel. He makes me a coffee before he leaves for work and as I drink it I'll watch a Youtube video that I know will put me in a good mood. Focusing on anything negative so early in the morning is bound to ruin your day, so making up your favourite hot drink, finding a comfy spot to sit and wake up and watching/reading something that will lift you up is a great way to start the day. In doing this, I'm always at my desk by 7am to start working.
Maybe this is just me, but I've found that when my hair is up and out of my face I feel like I'm ready to work. Especially when it's hot, the last thing you want is hair dragging you down. Throw your hair up into a pony or bun at the start of the day, wash your face, moisturise and you'll feel fresh and ready to go.
Make A Fun Breakfast
If I miss breakfast, without a doubt I get hangry (aka hungry + angry). When you're hangry, you can't focus. You can't start your work day properly. It's just not going to work. Come up with breakfast ideas that make you look forward to every morning. I always eat breakfast at my desk, and majority of the time my go-to meal is avocado on toast with salt and pepper. I look forward to it every day and it keeps me full until lunch time.
Plan Your Day
One of the best ways to be more productive in your day is to write a list! When you physically jot down what you want to achieve for the day on paper it gives you that little push to grab the pen throughout the day and cross each line off. If you have a planner, check out my Plan Pretty blog planner printables!
If you're more into digital lists, then there are a few great options. Firstly, the Notes app on your phone is a no-brainer. It's free, you can use emojis, choose which background you want and email the list to yourself if you need. I also bought an app (I think it was only a few dollars) called Awesome Note which has a super cute layout, the ability to categorise your notes and add drawings or voice memos. Desktop-wise, I have signed up (for free) to a website called To-Do List.
Add Background Noise
If you work at a computer, you'll know just how easy it is to get distracted. Luckily for myself (and hopefully you too), I found this website called Noisli which allows you to listen to background noise, completely free. Just like a meditation app where you can play the sound of the rain, or birds or the ocean, this is a similar concept with sounds designed to help you focus, and in turn boost productivity.
My favourite sound would have to be the rain with a little bit of thunder. There's just something about it that makes me want to get stuff done. I also love how they have the sound of being in a coffee shop. With that bustle of everything going on around you, it kind of makes you feel like you should be doing something as well.
Schedule Social Media
If you're trying to keep up with every social media account, while still needing time to create blog posts or videos, then websites that schedule your social media will be like a personal assistant for you. We could all do with one of those :)
I have previously used Hootsuite, which enabled me to schedule an array of Facebook posts throughout the day and night (to target the peak times of other parts of the world) and I always felt so good seeing how ahead of myself I was. It meant that content wasn't restricted to 9-5 work hours. There was a constant flow of content appearing every few hours of the day and night, along with weekends. Another option is Buffer, if you're interested in scheduling tweets as well.
Alternatively, you are able to schedule Facebook posts right on Facebook. A scheduling website is great though if you want to keep track of every social media account in the one place.
Productivity Apps + Websites
Distractions can be detrimental to your daily productivity. If you tend to get side-tracked and procrastinate, it may be helpful to try a productivity app! There's a couple of great ones that will keep you focused and away from unnecessary social media-scrolling throughout the day.
The first one is called Forest. This app encourages you to stay off your phone while you're trying to get something done. You "plant a tree" at the beginning of your task and it grows as you work for the next 30 minutes. If you leave the app before the time is up, the tree will die!
Another great productivity tool is Egg Timer. This website lets you set a countdown timer and when the time is up, no matter what website tab you're on, it'll take you back to the Egg Timer site and a buzzer will go off. This is great if you need to set a timer on yourself for browsing social media, so you don't lose track of time!
And lastly Rescue Time, which is a website that runs in the background throughout the day. It shows you how you spend your time online, with a daily report telling you which websites you visited and how long you spent on each. It's very interesting to see where time might be wasted!