How to Work Less and Achieve More
Have you ever felt so unproductive that no matter how hard you tried to finish the task you have, your load of work would stay the same? Maybe you didn’t sleep well, or you’re experiencing burnout. There are plenty of reasons we’re sometimes unable to do our tasks in the expected time frame.
However, if this situation remains constant, we should find a solution to it. Here are some tips on how to work less and achieve more which will definitely boost your productivity.
Why is the “work less and achieve more” philosophy good for you?
Maybe the title of our article sounds like those clickbait ads for losing an immersive amount of weight in just a couple of weeks. But, we assure you that’s not the case. We won’t give you an instant solution that will make you smarter, and faster nor will you gain any of those cool superpowers by reading it.
We are offering you simple, yet very powerful steps to follow if you want to make a significant impact on your productivity level and boost your work game to the maximum.
So, what are the steps to follow?
A one-way ticket to work less and achieve more is giving you the freedom to procrastinate. There is a strong stigma in our society that looks at procrastinating as something that is strictly bad. But that isn’t (and it’s not supposed to be) always the case.
Strategic slacking can increase the quality and the amount of work that gets done in a day. And it can also increase productivity. By taking small breaks during the workday, you are giving your brain enough time to rest and recuperate the energy. Just think about it: we are not equally productive every day and we are not able to the same pace throughout the day. Forcing yourself to work when you don’t feel like you can do it will do more harm than it will help.
A thing that will enable you to work less and achieve more is proper planning.
You might already know that when we don’t set goals and task completion, they tend to stay unfinished for quite some time. However, setting a goal for finishing the task may do the work. It’s because when we set plans, we stop worrying about how much work is still left unfinished and focus on completing them instead.
For a more productive day, you should always have a to-do list in front of you. Being aware of what is next will keep you focused for longer and enable you to finish your tasks much faster than you usually would.
We don’t want to sound cliché but…
If you’re still expecting a magic recipe that will enable you to work less and achieve more, then we have to tell you that this is not going to happen. Instead, we can offer you a pretty simple, yet compelling piece of advice. And we’re talking about having enough quality sleep. Without being afraid to sound like a lifestyle magazine writer or a health guru, we are insisting that to manage working less and achieving more you need to take care of your sleeping schedule. Without a good night’s sleep, it will be so hard to stay focused on your work and private life.
A good amount of research shows that sleep is influencing every aspect of our lives, including intelligence, how happy we are with our relationships, our mood and the ability to learn and remember.
Quality over quantity.
Another thing you should ask yourself while trying to work less and achieve more is if you want to do things in a sloppy way or if you prefer to invest some serious time and effort into completing a task. The problem with the first one is that it will require constant repair because of how things were done. The other one will never be finished. So, what to do?
Before even starting a project, determine how much time and energy you can invest in it. Make sure you’re not investing more than you’re capable of. If you realize the project will seriously endanger your energy level but won’t give as much in return – drop it.
Have you heard about the 80/20 rule? It can help you work less and achieve more.
The internet offers us a lot of valuable information. You will find a vast amount of people out there looking for some online tips on how to boost their productivity. And many websites are talking about all kinds of approaches.
For those who have never heard about the 80/20 rule (or the Pareto principle), the explanation is quite simple. This rule suggests that only 20% of all our activities affect about 80% of our results. But, what’s more important, it teaches us to look at what’s important in life and business. In meeting your goal to work less and achieve more, you can use this principle. You can start by cutting your e-mail time and investing it in something that matters. You can also reduce those that are not bringing any value to your work life. And you can engage more in the understanding of the core principles of your work tasks and project and forget about less important (and often trivial) details.
Channeling energy will help you work less and achieve more.
The key to success is in knowing how to manage your energy levels properly. Nobody is able to be a top performer all the time. That’s a job for superheroes, not for regular people. The idea behind this principle is to work insanely when your energy levels are at their peak, and then rest until they’re at their maximum again. If you’re working on low energy, you will actually accomplish less than you could, if you only took a break.
You can try the energy management principle by working in bursts, meaning you work strictly when you feel you’re at your best and take breaks when you feel tired. Another tip is to finish a task that can be done in a few hours in one take and not spread it in a few days. It will keep you focused and it will save you much-needed time.
Don’t forget about the apps.
They can save you a lot of time and effort in managing your team and they will help you get things done. A good thing about the modern era is that there are a lot of tools and apps that can help us excel. And there’s not a single reason not to try it out. From meal apps to time management apps – there is enough material for every sphere of your life. Dare to try it.
Studies have shown that top performers tend to take a 17-minute break for every hour of their work.
And this is a rule you should follow. When you feel like you’ve had enough, take a break and do something fun – read newspapers, watch a funny video or have a short walk. It has been proven to boost your performance up to an amazing 12 percent.
The idea to work less and achieve more sounds so appealing. However, it takes a lot of self-discipline and hard work to achieve it. We have given you some tips on how you can boost your productivity and performance and meet your goals faster. If you have a method of your own, please do share it with us in the comment section below.
A cat enthusiast and a cupcake maniac, Ana is a freelance Content Writer passionate about HR, productivity, and team management topics. When she’s not at her keyboard, you can find Ana in the kitchen, trying to make delicious cookies.