Productivity. It sounds like such a daunting word, especially if you’re a busy mom/dad, housewife, on the go entrepreneur, or if you’re like me – a “fly by the seam of my pants” kinda gal.
If you ask my husband, he’ll tell you that I prefer to live life more on the spontaneous side, which unfortunately isn’t always conducive to being productive and really getting things done. I guess I just don’t like the weight of feeling like I have a million things to do. Over the past few months however, I’ve been learning how to be more productive at home (especially during quarantine) without overburdening myself.
I had to figure out a way for me to get things done without it seeming like a chore. The first thing I did was change my mindset. Instead of thinking about doing a specific thing because “I have to”, I think of it more as a stepping stone to getting closer to where I want to be in life. It really works, trust me.
For example, if I know I need to tidy up the house, instead of thinking “oh ma gosh I have to clean”, I would think of it as “as soon as I can tidy up, I’ll be able to sit in peace and write my next blog post”. Trust me it’s that simple.
In the beginning though, I didn’t really know what to do to be productive. At first I figured because I was stuck at home it would be the most unproductive time of my life. Because, I mean, when we think productivity, we all think ‘work’. And how can I be productive if I’m stuck at home and can’t work.
But, then I prayed about it. Yes you read right, I went to God and asked him “Lord, how can I be productive in this season where productivity seems impossible?” It took me a while, but within the course of a few days the Lord started sharing ways with me that I could be productive in my own life, even though I was technically on house arrest and had limited resources.
Here are 5 ways you can be more productive at home.
1. Start the Project
You know that project you’ve been meaning to start but just haven’t had the time? You know the one, the dream of yours that’s been sitting idly in your head. Well, now you have a wealth of time and there is no time like the present.
It’s amazing sometimes how we always complain about not having the time to do something we really want to do. Whether its finally starting that business plan, writing that book, the home diy project, the youtube channel, etc. Then we finally have a wealth of time thrust upon us and we become “bored out of our minds” with “nothing to do”. Well I know what you should do, start the project!
2. Learn a New Skill
With all this free time that you have on your hands, one of the best things you can do is to learn a new skill. You never know, maybe the job you had before this pandemic might not be there when you get back, but with a new skill, you can get a new job, or create your own job/career.
A new skill can be anything. Learn to sew, learn to cook, learn to be a graphic designer, take up an instrument. Or you can do what my husband has been doing, learn a new language. The options are endless and the benefits even more so. This could open so many new avenues to you.
3. Declutter Your Life
Experts believe that in order to truly be productive in life and efficient when trying to complete tasks, our lives have to be free of clutter, confusion and chaos. My husband has been trying to teach me this forever and for a long time I just kept complaining that he was just being a neat freak (trust me, the man is unbelievably clean). But, I’ve tried it on my own and I have to agree that there are major benefits to my productivity.
When I’m writing, or planning my social media, my mind isn’t constantly going to the fact that I need to tidy up our bedroom or I don’t get distracted when I glance up for a moment and realize that I hadn’t put up the sweater I used the night before. The removal of these small distractions reduces the amount of time I have to refocus on the task at hand, which subsequently allows me to be as efficient with time as possible. This allows me to have more time in the day to do other things!
It is proven that exercise releases endorphins and other hormones which stimulate the brain and give the body a boost of energy and increases endurance. These factors can undoubtedly aid in your ability to be productive. I’ve always heard that when you get into the habit of exercising first thing in the day, you pump your body up to be able to tackle all your duties for the day. Make it a habit to get in at least 30 minutes of exercise everyday, trust me it will make you feel better.
5. Create a Routine/Schedule
On average, it takes approximately 66 days to form a new behavioural pattern. One of the biggest downfalls of “new years’ resolutions” is the fact that we are all always so busy all the time that trying to add something else to our lives is usually difficult. I used to feel this way until one day I decided to sit down and think about what I usually do in a day and the amount of time it takes me to accomplish each task. You know what I realized? The majority of my day is spent doing unimportant things or just wasted away. By creating a schedule you can easily map out a new routine for your life to include all the things you need to want and want to accomplish. Then if you stick to the schedule, over this period you will build a whole new behavioural routine that won’t easily be thrown out when life returns to normal.
6. Establish a Quiet Time
Quiet time is probably the most important time in the life of a christian. In my own life I know that I have struggled to maintain consistency in my quiet time, but one thing I’ve learned over the years is that I can’t live a fulfilled life without being filled up by God, and that happens mainly through my quiet time. During this time at home I’ve made it a point to set aside time to spend with God instead of scraping time at the end of the day. The more I do it the more it becomes a part of my life and it almost seems odd to go through the day without it.
Things are different now and times are really changing, but that doesn’t mean we can adapt and go with the flow. It is more than possible to be productive even if you are stuck at home.
I really hope this is helpful to all of you!