This Is the Perfect Time to Get Things Done

The barriers between work and life have blurred at a time when many individuals still work from home. Living in a pandemic, of course, brings with it a slew of concerns that have proven to be distracting at best and crushing at worst—and, in both cases, a drag on productivity. Knowing this (and in light of Iceland’s recent discovery that four-day workweeks may be more productive), researchers conducted a study of 2,000 Americans to find out when they are most productive.

For starters, the study found that Monday mornings, specifically between the hours of 10 a.m. and 11 a.m., are when Americans are most productive, which makes sense given that most individuals are still recovering from their weekend rejuvenation. In addition, 11% of Americans will drink five or more cups of coffee each day to stay focused, according to the report. While not entirely unexpected, this finding supports the notion that people all around the country need to find better, healthier ways to maximise productivity. So, to assist them (and us all), we spoke with two psychologists for their best advice on being productive, avoiding procrastination, and remaining realistic throughout the process. Continue reading to find out what they had to say.

When do you feel most productive?

While the most productive hour of the week is 10:54 a.m. on Mondays, the survey also discovered that our most productive periods vary by industry. For example, energy and utilities professionals were found to be most productive around 9:36 a.m. on Mondays, recruiting and HR workers were found to be most productive at 1:00 p.m. on Wednesdays, and sales people were found to be most productive at 11:33 a.m. on Fridays. The point is that it’s all about figuring out what works best for you when it comes to productivity.

Creating a routine that works for your schedule and energy levels is an important part of the discovery process. Jenny C. Yip, PsyD, a certified clinical psychologist and author, explains, “If you have a routine, you’re already anticipating yourself to be doing X, Y, and Z at a given time.” “If you have a strategy in place, your body will have a much easier time doing your tasks.”

Of course, if you don’t already have a routine, this can be difficult. Dr. Yip, on the other hand, claims that it’s as simple as testing the waters. “For a week, do the most difficult task first thing in the morning and see how it goes,” she suggests. “Try doing those tasks in the late afternoon the following week.” After you’ve compared your findings, you may start designing your routine.

Another technique to establish a habit is to concentrate on your energy. “If you look at when you have the most energy, those may be the best times and days to engage in productive activities,” says Ernesto Lira de la Rosa, PhD, a media adviser for the Hope for Depression Research Foundation. “Identifying whether mornings, afternoons, or nights are better for us can be beneficial in prioritising what works for us.”

Dr. Lira de la Rosa advises that once you’ve narrowed down your timing, you should establish an environment that’s appropriate for that portion of your day. “If you benefit from mornings, making sure you get adequate sleep the night before is critical,” he explains. “You may also need to set aside time in the morning to accomplish activities you enjoy before getting started on your to-do lists.” Setting aside time during the evening hours, on the other hand, if evenings work better for you, he says, can be beneficial.

When you’re feeling sluggish, here’s how to increase your productivity.

Even if you develop the ideal schedule, you will have days when you feel sluggish—this is completely natural. The key is to figure out why you’re feeling that way to begin with. “We may not have the physical or mental stamina to be productive when we are drained, tired, or exhausted,” explains Dr. Lira de la Rosa. “Identifying how much energy we have is one technique to enhance productivity while we’re feeling sluggish. We may address what we may need to do to assist us recharge or improve our energy if we know what we need.”

If you’re physically exhausted, laying down and taking a power nap might be beneficial. Naps can help if you’re emotionally weary, but so can meditation, listening to music, and adding other calming things to your workstation to increase your day’s overall peaceful tone.

How can you get rid of procrastination?

Sluggish feelings can lead to procrastination. Dr. Lira de la Rosa states, “Many people prefer to push themselves to be productive.” “It’s possible that this is harmful to getting things done. If we procrastinate, there are reasons behind it, and we should check in with ourselves to figure out what they are. Perhaps we are concerned that we will be unable to complete our chores, or that we will not have enough time to complete them properly.” Regardless of the situation, checking in and acting appropriately can make the day feel more approachable.

Yip agrees, stating that you can analyse your situation during the day and break down your remaining work hours into smaller, more manageable goals. Instead of looking at your calendar and seeing blocks of time scheduled from dawn to dusk, consider how you might incorporate self-care and productivity into the mix to avoid procrastinating.

Allow procrastination and feelings of sluggishness to happen on occasion. Dr. Lira de la Rosa adds, “We can waste so much time and energy worrying about what we have to do and blaming ourselves for not being productive.” “During these times, I recommend being gentle to yourself. We give ourselves permission to handle the things that can stand in the way of our productivity if we take time to be kind to ourselves. In such moments of concern or dread, we might engage in some constructive self-talk with ourselves. Our beliefs have an impact on how we feel, and if we criticise ourselves for being “lazy,” we may be unintentionally encouraging more procrastination.”

How to Set Reasonable Productivity Expectations

Above all things, it’s critical to maintain realistic production goals. Just because a poll says one hour is more productive than the next doesn’t guarantee it will always be for you.

“Expecting oneself to be productive 100 percent of the time is unrealistic,” says Dr. Yip. “If you don’t take a break, you’ll burn out, and some individuals burn out faster than others. It’s unrealistic to expect yourself to be productive 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Some people like to work four days per week, while others prefer to work five days per week with longer breaks in between. There is no one-size-fits-all answer, so try different things and see what works best for you.”

Hello everyone! You appear to be someone who enjoys free workouts, unique Well+Good content, and savings on cutting-edge wellness brands. Sign up for Well+, our online network of wellness insiders, and you’ll have quick access to your rewards.

Leave a Comment