If you’re having trouble being productive during the day, it’s possible that you’re using technology wrong. In fact, you’re probably letting technology distract you from your work rather than utilizing it as a force for greater efficiency and output.
4 Tech Tips for Boosting Productivity
While technology is often the culprit for distractions and lack of productivity, it can also serve as a catalyst for getting more work done. It’s simply a matter of how you approach it.
Don’t believe it? Well, look no further than leading businesses and their increased emphasis on the strategic use of technology. More than 70 percent of companies say business productivity tools help them run their businesses more efficiently. In comparison, 81 percent agree that workforce productivity is their number one IT priority over the next year. Some 56 percent of CEOs say the progress they achieve at the hands of digital technology enables them to grow their profits.
If technology is good enough to boost the overall productivity of entire organizations, then you can bet it’s good enough to boost your own productivity. Here are several tips to help you get the most out of it.
1. Use Task Management Apps
A major part of being productive is being organized. And if you want to be organized, it helps to centralize all of your tasks, assignments, and obligations in one place with deadlines, reminders, and to-do lists. Having the right task management is very helpful in this regard.
There are plenty of task management apps on the market (many free). This includes Microsoft To-Do, Things, Google Tasks, Todoist, Evernote, and others.
However, one of the best options is a simple solution called Remember The Milk. This app is sleek, simple, and allows you to organize tasks based on priority, due dates, and tags. You can even set up repeating tasks, sync with your calendar, and share with friends and family.
When using a task management app, it’s important to add everything to it. This includes both work tasks, personal tasks, errands, etc. By putting everything on the list, it frees up your mental capacity to actually do the work.
2. Automate What You Can
If there’s a manual task that you can automate, you should automate it. While it may take several minutes to find the right automation tool and learn how to use it, the long-term time-savings justify the upfront investment.
As a bonus, once you get your automations set up, you can use tools like Zapier and IFTTT to connect automations for even more productivity. For example, you can set up Gmail to automatically create a task inside of Remember the Milk every time you star an email from one of your superiors at work.
Or you could tell Google Calendar or Zoom to automatically send you a text message whenever someone cancels a meeting. You can combine almost any application with another tool. There are literally thousands of integrations.
3. Try Vagus Nerve Stimulation
Are you familiar with vagus nerve stimulation (VNS)? It’s a simple and safe method by which you activate your body’s vagus nerve (which is like your body’s “chill out machine”) and self-soothe during stressful moments. Also known as neuromodulation, the VNS process sends signals to the brain to relax and focus. Best of all, you can do it quickly and safely from anywhere (including at home or in the office).
The easiest way to facilitate VNS is through the use of a system like Xen by Neuvana (which is basically a pair of specialized headphones that stimulate the vagus nerve through targeted frequency bands).
4. Use Distraction Blockers
No matter how hard you may try to stay on task, it’s almost impossible to stay 100 percent focused when you have the entire internet available at your disposal.
Even the most disciplined mind is prone to scrolling through social media, binge-watching YouTube clips, or visiting your favorite news website. And if you want to avoid falling victim to these time-sucks, you may need to download a distraction blocking tool or focus app.
Focus apps are tools that block specific websites and/or allow you to set a schedule or timer to limit how much time you spend on distracting sites or applications. Here’s a list of good options. We recommend finding one and using it to limit the amount of time you spend on certain websites.
Give Your Productivity a Boost
Productivity doesn’t have to be as elusive as it seems. By leveraging the right technology in the right ways, you can get more done in less time without the distracting elements that typically come with apps, devices, and other solutions.
Use this article as a launching pad for doing bigger and better things!