Instead of working late most days of the week, you can simply try improving your efficiency. Although this is easier said than done, there are some things you can change about how you do your work in order to become more productive.
Finish What You Start
If you don’t complete a project that you’ve already started working on and just move on to the next one, you’ll get extremely stressed. You may think that you’ll be able to get more work done by doing more projects at the same time, but know that you can never really be completely focused on one task while having an uncompleted one hanging over your head. Once you manage to finish a project, you will feel both relaxed and happy, which will make you motivated to continue working efficiently.
However, in order to do this, you will need to figure out why you abandon projects. Although it’s always exciting to start working on something new, it can get really stressful if you don’t finish it as fast as you thought you’d be able to. In case the project is harder than you expected you may find yourself procrastinating and delaying important work. Nevertheless, if you notice this happening, you need to find a way to become motivated once again. Try asking your coworkers for help or set more realistic deadlines.
Put Your Phone on Silent
In order to increase efficiency at work, you will need to block all distractions. It’s no secret that your smartphone is one of the biggest workplace distractions, alongside talking with coworkers as well as food and bathroom breaks. When you hear that you’ve received a text message or email, you’ll feel an urge to answer it immediately. Even if you’re completely focused on the task at hand, you can easily get sidetracked and just grab your phone after hearing it ring. It’s like a reflex that is almost impossible to ignore.
Because of this, it’s a good idea to keep your smartphone on silent while you’re doing important work. On top of that, make sure to place it somewhere out of sight, so you don’t see the screen light up when you receive a text or email.
Use the Right Equipment
Sometimes, better equipment is all it takes in order to make you more efficient. If you feel like you could perform your job better if you had a certain piece of equipment, you should mention it to your boss right away. For example, if you notice that you waste a ton of time by having to answer the phone at your desk, hang up in order to search for documents around the office, and then call back a client when you’ve found what you’re looking for, you should address this problem.
Inform your boss about the time that is being lost due to this slow process and provide an easy solution. Something as simple as getting a wireless headset for every person that spends most of their time on the phone can improve the success of the whole company, as this piece of equipment would allow everyone to stay on the phone while moving around the office and doing other tasks for clients.
Instead of forcing yourself to work on your tasks until you’ve completed them all, you should take regular breaks. According to an article published by Psychology Today, taking breaks can help increase your productivity and creativity, as well as restore motivation. By taking the time to cool down every once in a while, you’ll be able to avoid procrastination and focus on the task at hand.
Learn to Say No
Throughout the day, people are bound to swing by your desk and ask for your input or help on a project they’re working on. Even though your instinct is probably to say yes and temporarily abandon your own project, you’ll need to know when to say no. In case you’re working on something important, simply say that you’ll be able to help once you finish your own task. There’s a good chance that the employee who asked for your help will figure everything out in the meantime and won’t even need your help later.