6 Bad Habits to Break to Be More Productive

6 Bad Habits to Break to Be More Productive

Productivity can mean the difference between a task taking one hour or two hours. Over time, even a few minutes lost can really add up. You need to streamline your working process to ensure you’re making the most of your time. Being productive will ensure that you get the most done.

There are some bad habits that are responsible for destroying the productivity of people. And they don’t always revolve around the workplace.

Stop Rushing in the Morning

You may think that rushing in the morning is going to let you save time because you’ll arrive at work earlier. That’s not the case. The morning rush can have negative consequences. Your mind is moving quickly from the moment you get out of bed. 

To start with, you have a rush of adrenaline, and this does make you feel like you can move faster than ever before. But that’s not the case in the long-term. You’re going to crash later on when that adrenaline rush runs out. It can be almost impossible to get back to those levels of productivity.

Instead, take some time to decompress when you wake up. Don’t read the newspaper and don’t turn on the TV. Just bathe in the silence of the house with a quick meditation session for ten to twenty minutes. 

Never Skip Breakfast

When people need time, they skip breakfast. A lot of people can’t skip breakfast, but they do it anyway because they’re in a rush. A well-rounded breakfast is essential for boosting your blood sugar levels. When you wake, you naturally have low blood sugar levels because you haven’t eaten. This can cause you to have less energy throughout the morning.

And you can’t replace the lack of blood sugar with a shot of caffeine. It’s a short-term fix. The moment those caffeine levels drop is the moment you crash.

Stop Prioritizing the Easy Tasks

You want to feel like you’ve achieved something when you walk into work. The easiest way to do this is to find the simplest tasks possible and to complete them. This is a mistake because when you have the most energy you’re wasting it on the tasks that need the least energy to complete.

Instead of prioritizing the easy tasks at first, you should spend your energy on the big tasks. If you want to boost your productivity, you need to spend your set amount of willpower on the tasks that are going to take you to the limit. Failing to do that will lead to a slower pace and you'll lack the capacity for the difficult tasks later.

Checking Your Emails Immediately

It may seem like a positive thing to reply to emails within minutes of them arriving, but they become a distraction. This is because it can take up to twenty minutes for you to get back to a task once you have been distracted from it.

Understand that emails aren’t designed so that you have to reply to them immediately. That’s what a face-to-face conversation is for. Get into the habit of not checking emails immediately.

Checking Social Media Feeds

This is the same issue as checking emails. People have a real addiction to smartphones and social media.  After a lot of people check their notifications they get into the habit of mindlessly browsing through nothing. Before you know it, you’ve lost a whole hour.

Make sure you switch off your notifications and resist responding to social media. One way to do this is to install a selective webpage blocker. You can set the times so that during the working day all your social media sites are blocked from use. This will help you to resist the urges. 

Stop Keeping Your Phone with You

A phone may be an easy way to stay productive, but it’s actually a big time sink. One study found that when a phone rings you are three times more likely to make mistakes, and that includes whether you answered the phone or not. Leave your phone on silent and leave it somewhere away from your desk.

Checking your phone just a few times a day will allow you to stay focused on the tasks that matter.


These strategies are going to enable you to get more time back than ever before. Through managing your day intelligently, you can get more done and keep your energy levels higher for longer.

Which of these bad habits will you break today?

About the Author

I am a regular writer for Forbes, Inc., Huffington Post, Entrepreneur Media (among others), as well as CEO and Chairman of Alumnify Inc. Proud alum from 500 Startups and The University of San Diego. Follow me on Twitter @ajalumnify

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