This guest post is by Shannon Suetos, who writes about purchasing and outsourcing decisions for small business owners and entrepreneurs at Resource Nation.
We have all had those days in which we would rather be doing just about anything other than what we’re supposed to. There are plenty of tools to help you get back on track and stay that way. Here are a few basic tips:
- Fully use your online calendar. Most e-mail platforms also have all have great calendar features. Take advantage of this if you’re not already. If there are certain tasks you need to do every day, block out a certain time each day for these tasks. Set your availability to away, and keep on the task at hand. These reminders will hopefully keep you on task and remind you it is time to start them if you are in the zone doing another task.
- Rescue Time. One of my favorite features of this program is that it can actually block certain websites for however long you chose. Rescue Time claims it can save users an average of 3 hours and 54 minutes of work time per week — not too shabby.
- Avoid your e-mail. Stop checking your e-mails constantly. The more time you spend checking e-mails and responding, the less time you’re spending on other tasks. Set aside 30 min to an hour each day or every other day to check your messages. If you get thousands of e-mails a day you should start filtering high priority emails into folders you can check easily and get the information you need when you need it. Gmail users can use Priority Inbox to do this.
- Make your to-do list the day before. Each day, at the end of your work day, make a list of tasks that need to be done for the next day. Because the information is fresh in your head, you can quickly sort out what needs to get done, and in what priority. This way when you get to work, and you need that extra cup of coffee, you won’t have to spend much time on planning the day.
Image credit, via iStockPhoto