8 great productivity tips from 8 psychologists

by | Jul 16, 2013 | General Productivity

Estimated Reading Time: 1 minute, 12s.

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If you’re like me, you use your brain to become more productive. Well, who understands the brain better than a psychologist? Psychology Today recently interviewed 15 Psychologists to ask them each for one productivity tip. Here’s a link to the full article, and I’ve also summarized the golden nuggets that I found the most valuable below in case you don’t have time to read the whole thing!

  1. Take breaks. Sitting at your desk for hours on end will leave you unfocused and zapped, so take a lot of breaks throughout the day. Also, make sure you actively try to reduce your stress levels during your breaks, like by exercising.
  2. Close your office door to hunker down in your work. I would add to make sure you’re welcoming the rest of the time!
  3. Buck conventional wisdom if something else works better for you.” I love this tip, and it works very well with being honest with yourself.
  4. Use the Pomodoro Technique, where you work in 25-minute intervals, then take a five-minute break.
  5. Deal with your unresolved issues to “free up your cognitive resources”. Another way to deal with this problem – keep a waiting for list.
  6. Don’t be afraid to write a shitty first draft. (Speaking from experience, this is a freeing exercise.)
  7. Use an app that cuts you off from the Internet, like Freedom ($10) or LeechBlock (a firefox add-on).
  8. When you really need to hunker down in something, put your phone away. Again, speaking from experience, this is difficult at first, but very rewarding after you get past that initial mental hurdle.

Written by Chris Bailey

Chris Bailey has written hundreds of articles on the subject of productivity and is the author of two books: Hyperfocus and The Productivity Project. His books have been published in 27 languages. Chris writes about productivity on this site and speaks to organizations around the globe on how they can become more productive without hating the process.

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