7 Tips to Being More Productive in Your Online Business - What Do You Do To Keep Productive?

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Do you want to be more productive? Do you want to spend less time working and more time doing the things you want to do?

Productivity is a key part of every successful person. I have studied productivity and have spoken to many multi millionaires to find out how they get so much done.

I'm going to teach you what I've learned and tested over the years to help improve your productivity.


Secret # 1 Create a routine

I learned this from Eben Pagan in his Wake Up Productive program. Basically create a set of habits that you do every morning. Sort of a ritual...
For me, the first thing I do when I wake up is drink some water and then do 30 minutes of exercise. Then I have breakfast, get ready and start work at 9am. See what works for you.

Id highly recommend doing exercise in the morning. It allows you to start your day out right, keeps your mind active and it keeps you in a peak state for the day.


Secret # 2 - To-do lists

To-do Lists improve productivity by at least 25%. I always do my to-do list before I go to bed, that way as soon as I start work the next day I know exactly what I need to do.

I never have to waste time thinking about what needs to be completed.

Just a tip with to-do lists... Also put the list in order. A couple questions to consider are:

• How important is it that I do this task immediately?
• Which are the tasks that must be completed as soon as possible?

I actually use basecamphq for my online to-do list. If I have a huge set of tasks to complete I will even create a daily to-do list, for each day of that week.


Secret # 3 - Set intentions

One of my coaches really drilled into me the importance of setting intentions. I don't want to go all 'woo woo' on you so I'll keep this section short.
Set an intention for tasks and your day. For example, with the timer I mentioned say to yourself "I am only going to focus on this task and complete it". That is setting an intention.

Maybe the intention for the day might be "Today I am going to remain super productive and complete everything on my to-do list." Intentions are powerful, use them.


Secret # 4 Eliminate distractions

It's amazing what happens when you focus on a task without any distractions. Eliminate all distractions - email, skype, put your phone on silent, even put a sign on your door to stop people coming into your office. ( I have a sign that I put on my door saying "Important work in progress, keep out")

Eliminate all distractions, when you get distracted it actually takes about 20 minutes to get back to the same amount of focus you had before you were interrupted.


Secret # 5 Don't multitask


Multi tasking is a silent productivity killer. It seems like you're getting more done, when you compare your results from focused time on one task it's obvious multi tasking reduces productivity over time.

Personally I loved to multi task - on my pc I had 2 monitors, heaps of windows open doing so many different things at once.
It was a hard habit to break, once I finally did I found I got more done and I was so much more focussed and clear on what I was doing.

Now that I travel the world I have a laptop, I miss the 2 monitors but the laptop allows me to do less multitasking as I only have one screen.


Secret # 6 - Take breaks

I'm sure you've heard 'less is more'. Take short every 1-2 hours. Eben Pagan recommends the following:

50 Minutes work, 10 minutes break x 2
30 Minute break
50 Minutes work, 10 minutes break x 2
60 minute break
50 Minutes work, 10 minutes break x 2
30 minute break.

During the breaks make sure you do something that takes your mind off work. You''ll most likely find you come back with a fresh mind and are more focused on your task.


Secret # 7 Use a timer/stopwatch


When you use a timer a weird thing happens. When you set time limits, Parkinson's law begins. For those of you who don't know, Parkinsons Law is basically - however long you expect something to take, that's how long it will usually take.

For example back in high school students are given like 3-4 weeks to complete an assignment. Most of those assignments wont be complete until the day before. Why? Because you've set that time frame for it to be completed. Even if you leave it to the night before it still manages to get done on time...

So set smaller time frames, I like to set my timer to 50 minutes. I then say to myself, during the next 50 minutes I will only do this task and will complete it.

I don't always complete it, but it has helped me work faster by setting time frames and using a timer.

So there you have it! 7 secret productivity tips that I have learned from multi millionaires. Try it out, change things up, even if you only implement one of these tips it can make a huge difference in your productivity.

Use these tips, have fun with it and get more done! Please let me know about how you stay productive!
#busineat #online #productive #productivess #productivity #secrets #time management
  • Profile picture of the author ArticlePrince
    I don't know that to-do lists are a secret, but I definitely got a few new ideas from it. Thanks :-)
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    • Profile picture of the author highbrid
      Great post thanks

      I personallly like pereto's 80/20 rule in a productivity context.

      80% of results come from 20% of efforts - in my experience this holds true.
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      • Profile picture of the author BenBrandes
        You're welcome Happy to provide some valuable tips that have worked well for me and many others. When it comes to the internet it's so important to manage time effectively to increase the speed of implementation.

        Please make sure you use these tips.
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  • Profile picture of the author JimmyS
    Good Post... You have made my whole world stop to think about what you just posted....
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  • Profile picture of the author actionplanbiz
    i recently was attending a webinar and it also mentioned the idea of a timer, i think its a great idea. you give yourself a certain amount of time do something and when the time is up, off to the next task. that timer is gonna help you focus and execute only the bare essentials.
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  • Profile picture of the author Diana Lane
    One of the things that's made a big difference to me is to get the job that I want to do least out of the way as early as possible in the day. It came from a book called something like 'Eat That Frog'. I'm not sure how they managed to squeeze an entire book out of the concept as it's a long time since I read it, but the idea behind it was that if you had to eat a frog it would be the most difficult part of your day - everything that came after it would be a doddle, and everything that came before it would be little more than procrastination since your mind would be too pre-occupied by the forthcoming frog-eating fest to be fully effective. Substitute 'most dreaded task' for 'frog' and that's the book in a nutshell.

    I suppose I ought to hop it now before my to-do list starts leaping around and croaking
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    • Profile picture of the author BenBrandes
      great tips guys, yes I definitely found I am more productive when I have regular breaks to refresh my mind. I come back clearer for doing so.

      Definitely worth while investing in a count down timer. There is also an online version count down timer but no where near as effective for me.
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      • Profile picture of the author robonline
        Good advice,

        For a timer, I like cooltimer. If you google it , there's a free download on cnet BTW.

        Robert
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  • Profile picture of the author Radko
    Thanks ... cool tips..
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  • I find this helpful, getting used to a new routne is a challenge but very productive when followed religiously.
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  • Profile picture of the author eaglechick
    Amazon.com: Eat That Frog! 21 Great Ways to Stop...Amazon.com: Eat That Frog! 21 Great Ways to Stop...

    Eat That Frog! 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time (Hardcover)
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  • Profile picture of the author rajivkumar900
    Thanks for this info..i really need it i waste a lot of time here and there...LOL
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  • Profile picture of the author Maddi
    Hey Ben,

    Thanks for providing the tips here. I personally use most of them and they have dramatically changed the way I work and increased my productivity many times over. In fact I combined Parkinson's principal with a few simple rules and created a tool of my own called Power Sessions. It is so easy and simple to implement and increases productivity extremely easy. I have blogged about it on my Blog.

    Thank you for providing these tips and I hope others implement these into their daily lives too.

    Maddi
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  • Profile picture of the author Janice Sperry
    Thanks. This post is a keeper. I think I have tried all those things but never at the same time and not in such a disciplined focused way. I might just print this out and refer to it for awhile. I hate being unproductive but I am easily distracted.
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  • Profile picture of the author thatgirlJ
    A tip that really skyrocketed my productivity was to STOP THINKING

    Jason Fladlien teaches to only allow yourself 60 seconds to make a decision. Not allowing myself to stew over unimportant things has done more for my business than most anything else.
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    • Profile picture of the author BenBrandes
      Yes I also agree, it is important to make decisions quickly rather than wasting hours of time 'thinking'. Make your decision and take action. See the results and learn and tweak from there.

      Action is the key which is why these productivity tips are so important
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  • Profile picture of the author Branlan17
    My goal this summer is to just work work work and not check check check the CB account until my site breeches 100 organic visitors a day.
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    • Profile picture of the author BenBrandes
      Originally Posted by Branlan17 View Post

      My goal this summer is to just work work work and not check check check the CB account until my site breeches 100 organic visitors a day.
      Keep us updated on your results
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  • Profile picture of the author Nic Lynn
    1. "brainstorm" ALL goals and to-dos
    2. Prioritize all goals and to-dos
    3. Use teuxdeux.com to keep overall plans on track
    4. Use a time boxing program to make sure I get all daily to-dos done
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  • Profile picture of the author lukemeister
    I really like combining #5 and #7 - I learned about those a few years ago and I've always liked how focused a person can be when using a stopwatch and not multitasking - when I don't focus on keeping myself focused, time wasting begins
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  • Profile picture of the author MizterVizion
    Something that has really helped me out is becoming addicted to "completion". No matter the task (article writing, publishing, link building, etc.) nothing is more important that completing what I planned for that day in the time frame I set. It helped jump my productivity and also takes the focus off of the dreaded "how much did I make today" syndrome.
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    • Profile picture of the author BenBrandes
      Originally Posted by MizterVizion View Post

      Something that has really helped me out is becoming addicted to "completion". No matter the task (article writing, publishing, link building, etc.) nothing is more important that completing what I planned for that day in the time frame I set. It helped jump my productivity and also takes the focus off of the dreaded "how much did I make today" syndrome.
      I like it, it's definitely a good mindset switch to have. When combining that addicted to completion attitude with a proper plan it's very powerful.

      The other side to it is just getting something out there - it doesn't need to be perfect, you can always improve it over time.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jake Howard
    Just a couple of comments.

    I tried to use the timer, but I found that I actually wasted a lot of the time looking over at the time to see how much time I had left. I also found it quite hard to work under that kind of pressure. I was thinking more about the time, then the task at hand, and I was more worried about the time then my task.

    A tip that I have found helpful, is when prioritising your to-do-list, although it is important to knock off the important ones first, it can be a bit demotivating if your first item on the to-do-list is the biggest item of the day. I always like to start with some simple items that are easy to knock off, because it makes me feel like I am making a lot of progress, then I tackle the main item full of running.

    I also find that if I am not in the mood for working, I take a break. After the break, I then come back and do something, that may not be the most important job in the world, but it is easy to do. By doing this, I feel like I am making progress, and I am in the mood for more work. If it doesnt fix my mood, at least I know I have actually done something, even though it may have been small.
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  • Profile picture of the author tyroneshum
    I keep myself reminded on how I spend time at the right time and at the right tasks on a regular basis. I use RescueTime to determine if I'm getting more productive and have also get my virtual team have this installed onto their desktops so that way, they keep themselves reminded as well.

    Alternatively, before starting the day, I turn on my computer and head off to my mind mapping software to get my mind juice off the tasks I want to get done. Once I've finalized my mind map, I'll generate a flowchart and then upload it to our project management system. Afterward, I'll review it once more and then come up with the step by step instructions to be given to my staff. That's how I get ourselves helping each other.
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    • Profile picture of the author BenBrandes
      Originally Posted by tyroneshum View Post

      I turn on my computer and head off to my mind mapping software to get my mind juice off the tasks I want to get done. Once I've finalized my mind map, I'll generate a flowchart and then upload it to our project management system. Afterward, I'll review it once more and then come up with the step by step instructions to be given to my staff. That's how I get ourselves helping each other.
      Hey Tyrone,

      Nice stuff, I've seen your outsourcing content, it's good stuff. Found out about it from my good mate Gideon.

      Yeah I'm a visual person so flowcharts work well for me. Flowcharts combined with step by step instructions are definitely the way to go.

      Sometimes I use mindmaps to plan out everything I need to do for a particular project then work backwards from there.
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  • Profile picture of the author Adam James
    Its sometimes the most simple things that make you more productive planning tomorrow today has helped me move my business forward, each and every day I make sure I get the priorities out othef way first before I start with anything else.
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  • Profile picture of the author pozas77
    Great advice Ben.
    Eliminating distractions is the one for me!
    Thanks
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  • Profile picture of the author yianni
    thanks ben,

    very informative

    some interesting ideas
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  • Profile picture of the author omonoiavas
    thanks. excellent tips
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    • Profile picture of the author BenBrandes
      Haha I'd recommend setting a timer just before you come on to the forum. It's amazing how much faster you do things. I'm quite shocked at the amount I've got done in forums just by using the timer.

      To me it's like a game hehe I gotta finish my task before the timer goes out. Works for some people, not so much for others :p

      Definitely worth trying though!
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  • Profile picture of the author Ellen_Agius
    Thanks for the advice. To keep myself productive and yes I know we all have heard it, it is all about my reason WHY, I have my affirmations, pictures on a dream board up in my office and look at them to motivate me when I don't feel like doing business.
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    • Profile picture of the author BenBrandes
      Originally Posted by Ellen_Agius View Post

      Thanks for the advice. To keep myself productive and yes I know we all have heard it, it is all about my reason WHY, I have my affirmations, pictures on a dream board up in my office and look at them to motivate me when I don't feel like doing business.
      Thats great! Well done for taking the time to do this :-) It's a very powerful tool for motivation. In the end it's all about the why
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      • Profile picture of the author Oleg Cherkasky
        Ben, you bought wake up productive didn't you?

        you just wrote the 60 60 30 rule there.



        Originally Posted by BenBrandes View Post




        Secret # 6 - Take breaks

        I'm sure you've heard 'less is more'. Take short every 1-2 hours. Eben Pagan recommends the following:

        50 Minutes work, 10 minutes break x 2
        30 Minute break
        50 Minutes work, 10 minutes break x 2
        60 minute break
        50 Minutes work, 10 minutes break x 2
        30 minute break.




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  • Profile picture of the author bydomino
    When I have to get ultra productive I run a kitchen timer. Or I use the one on my iPhone.

    I set it to 30 min. ( I try to get this on the hour or half hour)

    Then I go to work like normal. I always have objectives I want to get competed during the day. I also do have distractions.

    With the timer in place I am reminded every 30 min to stay on track. If I stray it will only be until the next buzzer. That could be 30 min but usually it is never more than 15.

    When in this mode I am able to meet any deadline and or complete all projects.

    I hope this helps,

    Kevin
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  • Profile picture of the author Formulam
    Got to have a list - but I keep it to six 'must do' things (not including having a shower, getting dressed etc!). Damian Benko taught me that.

    My biggest motivator is fear of going back to having no money.... I've got big signs up saying 'remember the anger' or 'remember the frustration' because of something which happened to do with having no money which made me really attack the business of internet marketing!

    Great topic - thanks!
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  • Profile picture of the author Sarah Harvey
    Really interesting tips. Self-explanatory and some are interesting like the stop watch. In some cases this will only make the individual more nervous and nothing will get done.

    I think writing or doing tasks is similar to creating art... either you will do it or you won't. If a person does not feel inspired to do something at that given moment then it just won't happen. Although some people do need a gentle nudge.
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  • Profile picture of the author Lilach
    Great tips Ben.

    It can be difficult to keep all the plates spinning in the air when you are starting or running a business. But for many people, it's not just because there is too much to do - often they haven't found the right systems, habits or resources to help them make the most of the time available.

    You have to question if procrastination is the culprit too! Do you find that there are always one or two projects that are on your 'to do' list but never quite get completed. If the task is important then you are being undermined by procrastination because:
    • Leaving or ignoring a task could turn it into an urgent piece of work - with implications in quality and cost.
    • Keeping things on your 'to do' list without managing to complete them can be stressful.
    There are many reasons for procrastination - other tasks seem simpler, more comfortable or more enjoyable, you feel overwhelmed by the task or simply don't feel in the right frame of mind to complete it. There are a number of steps you can take to overcome procrastination:
    • Put the task on your 'to do' list as high priority and do not attempt other tasks until that one is completed. Often, anxiety about completing the task is worse than actually tackling it!
    • Encourage other people to chase you on it.
    • Decide on a reward for completing the task.

    It also helps to keep on top of things you need to have the time, space, resources and tools to do the job. Don't be afraid to try different systems - what works for one person may not work for another. Using new systems, or working in a different way, may initially seem daunting but you will soon see the benefits. Reviewing your time and project management regularly is essential - it will stop you from falling into bad habits and help you to stay on track.

    Lilach
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    • Profile picture of the author Aussie_Al
      Great tips thanks for sharing - I am pleased to know I was pretty much doing must of these anyways
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    • Profile picture of the author BenBrandes
      Originally Posted by Oleg Cherkasky View Post

      Ben, you bought wake up productive didn't you?

      you just wrote the 60 60 30 rule there.
      Yes, I'm a huge fan of Eben Pagan :-)

      Originally Posted by Lilach View Post

      Great tips Ben.

      It can be difficult to keep all the plates spinning in the air when you are starting or running a business. But for many people, it's not just because there is too much to do - often they haven't found the right systems, habits or resources to help them make the most of the time available.

      You have to question if procrastination is the culprit too! Do you find that there are always one or two projects that are on your 'to do' list but never quite get completed. If the task is important then you are being undermined by procrastination because:
      • Leaving or ignoring a task could turn it into an urgent piece of work - with implications in quality and cost.
      • Keeping things on your 'to do' list without managing to complete them can be stressful.
      There are many reasons for procrastination - other tasks seem simpler, more comfortable or more enjoyable, you feel overwhelmed by the task or simply don't feel in the right frame of mind to complete it. There are a number of steps you can take to overcome procrastination:
      • Put the task on your 'to do' list as high priority and do not attempt other tasks until that one is completed. Often, anxiety about completing the task is worse than actually tackling it!
      • Encourage other people to chase you on it.
      • Decide on a reward for completing the task.

      It also helps to keep on top of things you need to have the time, space, resources and tools to do the job. Don't be afraid to try different systems - what works for one person may not work for another. Using new systems, or working in a different way, may initially seem daunting but you will soon see the benefits. Reviewing your time and project management regularly is essential - it will stop you from falling into bad habits and help you to stay on track.

      Lilach
      Awesome stuff there Lilach - thanks for sharing! Building systems definitely helps with overall productivity for you and outsourced workers. I'm always looking on ways to get things done faster.

      Each improvement makes a huge difference in the overall scheme. As for procrastination sometimes it's essential to push yourself and do it. Other times it's not necessary and can easily be outsourced. Totally depends on the situation
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