15 Actions That Are Making Your Workday Terrible

Posted on - in Work Productivity
girl having a bad day

Do you seem to always run out of time during the workday? You may be sabotaging yourself. Here are 15 things you can stop doing in order to have a more productive workday.

1. Multitasking

Most people think that multitasking lets you complete more tasks in less time, but that’s not true. Your brain isn’t designed to switch from task to task, so it takes longer to complete each task. Plus, according the UCLA Psychology Department, multitasking prevents you from learning new things properly.

2. Eating Junk Food

You know that eating junk is bad for your figure, but did you know that it’s just as bad for your brain? Eating junk food can make your memory take a vacation long before the rest of your body does.

3. Eating at Your Desk

Now, you know that junk food isn’t thinking food. You may not know that chowing down on junk at your desk instead of getting up and getting a proper meal may be affecting your work. Heriot-Watt University and the University of Edinburgh found that going outside or even just looking outside can lower your stress levels and help you concentrate better. So, during your next lunch break, take in the sites while you eat.

4. Using Social Media

Admit it. You’re addicted to checking your Facebook, Twitter or Instagram account. Constantly checking social media can eat up your work time, leaving you to wonder where the day went. During work time, log off your social media accounts or at least wait until lunch time to take a peek.

5. Pushing Yourself Too Hard

This may seem counterproductive, but stop pushing yourself so hard. Research by psychologist Roy Baumeister has found that people who try to do project after project while running on sheer willpower will run out of steam. Try giving yourself a timeout every few hours to make yourself more productive.

6. Marathoning It

As mentioned in number 5, marathon sessions just don’t work. Short, focused bursts of work are a much better way to keep your energy up.

7. Crazy Lists

Most time management gurus tell you that to be more productive you need to start your day with a to-do list. The problem is, most of us are way too ambitious. Only put manageable tasks on your list and you’ll get more done.

8. Overtime

Research shows that when you lower your work hours, your productivity goes up. Maybe someone should inform your boss?

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9. Skipping Sleep

Speaking of overtime, do you push sleep aside so that you can get more done? Well, stop it! Harvard Medical School found that most people in the United States don’t get enough sleep to function properly at work.

10. Always Saying Yes

Saying ‘yes’ may make you popular, but it gives you less time to complete tasks that are important for job security. Only agree to help with tasks that you can realistically fit into your schedule.

11. Being a Loner

While you are trying to say ‘no’ more often, why not ask for help more often as well? Going in alone can put too much stress on you. Share your burden and you will get more done.

12. Nit-Picking

Author and businesswoman Sheryl Sandberg’s mantra is, “Done is better than perfect.” The next time you find yourself trying to perfect every detail, focus on just getting it done.

13. Being Afraid to Delegate

Don’t pass up a chance to delegate a task to someone who is better suited to complete it.

14. Fear of Technology

Use productivity apps. Learn time-saving keystrokes for your favorite computer program. Use your email’s filtering options to get rid of junk mail. Technology is meant to save you time, so use it.

15. Skipping the Gym

Studies show that exercise makes your brain more resilient to stress. It also gives you more energy to complete your tasks.

Not doing well at work? Chances are you need to stop doing what you’re doing and focus on better activities. Even small changes can make a big difference in your workweek.

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Kayla Matthews writes Productivity Theory and is constantly seeking to provide new tips and hacks to keep you motivated and inspired! You can also find her on Huffington Post and Tiny Buddha, and follow her on Google+ and Twitter to stay up to date on her latest productivity posts!

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