I have a confession: I am a workaholic. If you’re reading this, you’re probably one of us. After all, who isn’t? Most working people prescribed a 40-hour work week could not call themselves lazy, and have likely been plagued by office dreams as much as the next person.
Waking up with chills after trying to escape a desk that suffered an eruption from an evil paper Mt. Vesuvius was an all-too-common nightly terror for me before I began focusing on productivity. Short of starting my own Workaholics Anonymous chapter, I was afraid there was no way to get rid of that mental megalith. The sad fact is, when you devote yourself to your job, no matter how many social events you get in, you still dream of work. Here are 6 ways to conquer the fear of work failures that are limiting your productivity.
- Social Media Surfing & Networking – ever important, digital networking is ever a time suck. Don’t get caught Facebooking for more than 30 minutes a day unless your job calls for it! How? Set a timer, or monitor your time expenditure via a simple tool like Rescue Time.
- Poor Eating Habits – nutritional failure in the last 100+ years came at the advent of processed foods. Supplements earned a bad name so feed your brain and body with food that powers it. Substitute your McMuffin for real food like oatmeal, fruits and eggs. Don’t have time for fresh fruit? Buy frozen – it will keep longer. Vegetables, fruits, and proteins are also a better choice than the lunchtime Redbull to get you through the day.
- Lack of Business Workflow Systems – It’s often debated whether or not your CRM is wasting more time than it’s saving. Forget your CRM. A file management system is an easy way to eliminate document loss, and therefore productivity loss. We recommend M-Files for document management needs, but a good free option is Google Docs if you don’t mind setting it up yourself and sacrificing the automated options.
- Bosses With ADD – If you’re managing your employees, try to stay organized. Keeping employees on task, one task at a time, and help them prioritize the many tasks you assign on a daily basis. This will help lower their stress levels and consequently, make them more productive.
- Email – Limit your email checking to specific times of day – every few hours is a good way to ensure you don’t get stuck trying to reach Inbox Zero. Pause for Gmail is a great tool to use if you want to set up an autoresponder and let your clients know you’re paying attention.
- Meetings – the endless, unproductive, disorganized meeting can eat up as many as 4 hours in a work day. In an 8-hour day, sacrificing 50% is KILLING your productivity. Outline the points of order Congress-style, and block out the amount of time for each subject. Put one person in charge of making sure topics have air time, and your company reaches resolutions in a timely manner.
Since implementing these 6, I don’t find office dreams so unpleasant anymore – but once upon a time, the imaginary office was full of clutter. Fix the productivity, and you’ll fix the madness that goes along with it… or at least, perhaps your office dreams will have fewer cluttered desks and more pleasant successes. Revive your productivity. If I can, so can you.