Research shows that employees are now less productive than they used to be. In fact, a trend in which employee productivity has been declining on an annual basis has been observed.
If, as an employee, you’ve been feeling unproductive, you should know that you are not alone. However, your career prospects in the new year could be linked to your productivity levels. Below are some life hacks that will make you a more productive employee in 2018.
Use Music to Soothe Your Stress
The fact is that most employees are stressed — chronically stressed, in fact! Recent research by Paychex that surveyed 2,000 full-time American employees found that most employees are stressed most of the time.
When you consider the life of the average employee: a very busy workday overloaded with activities, a long and stressful commute, the hubbub of daily life and other responsibilities that have to be addressed, it becomes instantly clear why stress is so common. While there are many ways to deal with stress, perhaps one of the easiest life hacks, that is within reach for everybody, to reduce stress is to listen to music. Calm, soothing music can go a long way toward making you less stressed and, as a result, more productive. The power of music to reduce stress is well-established by research — especially slow, quiet classical music.
So, if you are constantly stressed and it’s already affecting your productivity and day-to-day life, it might be a good idea to load up on some slow, quiet classical music!
Experiment With Waking Up Super Early
Benjamin Franklin is renowned for popularizing the saying, “Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise.” And it’s just as true today as it was when Franklin first said it.
According to an employee from Electra Cruises, “In an age of constant distractions, thanks to technology and a massive population boom, it can be difficult to get some quiet time to yourself: quiet time to think, quiet time to work, quiet time to just be. The best way to get this quiet time is by waking up super early. In fact, research shows that we do the best work of the day during the early hours of the day. So, it might be a good idea to see if it’s possible to structure your day in such a way that you’re able to start waking up by 4 – 5AM.”
Develop an Exercise Routine
Exercise is regularly listed as one of the best ways to improve productivity to the point that it’s almost become a cliche, yet the number of people that regularly exercise is still small.
There are so many reasons why exercise will make you a significantly more productive employee:
- It reduces your chances of falling sick
- It reduces your stress levels
- It eliminates fatigue
- It can help make you more confident
- It improves your memory and ability to retain information
If you are able to achieve all the above, your productivity levels will experience a sharp increase. If you don’t exercise, it might be a good idea to include it in your routine — perhaps as something you do daily or a few times a week. You can thank yourself later for the improvement in productivity you record!
Develop a System that Allows You to Sleep Adequately
Perhaps the greatest life hack that anybody can implement that costs absolutely nothing is sleep. Perhaps due to how routine it is, sleep is underrated as a productivity hack. A lot of people believe that the key to being more productive is to sleep less — to “burn the midnight oil,” so to speak. However, this is not the case. Research has found a link between being well-rested and being super productive. Adequate sleep has also been linked to improved performance, better memory, good decision-making and other cognitive improvements.
If you get less than six hours of sleep daily, you need to make a change: experiment with getting at least six to seven hours of sleep daily for a month or two, and compare your performance and productivity levels with that of previous months to see if there is an improvement.