Do you ever find yourself thinking about where you want to be in two years or what you want to get out of your job in the long run? These ideas are something that everyone wonders about at some point and it can be easier for some to answer these questions than others. Everyone takes different steps in their career and no two people will have the same career success, it’s up to each of us to decide what is important for us and figure out how to achieve it.
Although we can’t control every aspect of our careers we can help set ourselves up for success in the long run by implementing some small habits. Check out the below suggestions that you can practice to help you increase your productivity and set yourself up for achieving those short- and long-term goals.
Get on top of your time management
Think about how to use your time and whether you use it wisely. For example, if you analyse your time you may realize that although you might be working hard, bad time management may causing you to lose out on time you could be using for other things. It could be worth monitoring how you are using your time over a certain period such as a fortnight, taking note of how your time is divided up. Analysing this will then allow you to see where your time is going and help you to figure out how to restructure your time for better productivity.
Create a schedule
This goes hand-in-hand with time management and will help you to stay on track during the day. Allow yourself a certain amount of time for each task, allocating less time for less-important tasks, and stick to your schedule the best you can. What can also be useful is allocating a certain amount of time for those unseen or unavoidable unplanned tasks that can come up during the day, that way they won’t eat into your schedule as much.
Set yourself goals and challenges
Take note of goals you want to reach, whether they are short-, medium- or long-term, and monitor your progress and whether you achieve these goals. Make sure to keep them realistic, but always challenging enough to push you and keep you motivated. Also try to set yourself challenges on a regular basis in order to improve your problem-solving ability. This is a skill that is valued across all-different industries and so, if you are faced with a problem, try to visualize how you would go about solving it.
Allow for downtime
In order to make sure you don’t burn out and to keep productivity up, make sure to schedule some time in your day to switch off from work. Mindfulness is a great tool many people use to help them with this, and allows you to focus on moment-by-moment thoughts and feelings without judging them. If mindfulness isn’t your cup of tea, then take some time away from your desk just to have some quiet time. This will help you to refocus and you will be more productive when you return to your work.
Not only are problem-solving skills important skills to develop, but another skill that will help set you up for success is learning to listen. What many people don’t realize is that there is more than one way to listen to people, and a common way to separate ways of listening is to separate it into two categories; passive and active listening. Passive listening is when you are listening to someone but you are only taking in the information you need or not taking anything in at all / only a certain amount. Active listening on the other hand is when you are fully engaged and listening to the person speaking, you are fully connected and taking in all information. Having the ability to actively listen allows you to reflect on information and will help you to achieve personal development in the long run. Help yourself to improve this ability by asking questions when speaking to others or paraphrase what a person says, this will allow you to connect more with people.