• Scott Herring

How to Get More Work Done This Week

In addition to spending too much time blogging and optimizing for search engines & conversions, I'm a life hacker. I thought I’d share 8 of the best tactics I have that could help you get more work done this week.

1. Provide a good work space.

Chefs create a mise en place, a French culinary phrase meaning “putting in place”. It refers to the cook organizing and arranging the ingredients (e.g., proteins, vegetables, sauces, spices) at the workstation to make dish preparation fast and easy. The same applies to your workstation where you blog. Are your swipe files within arm’s reach? Can you shut off outside distractions? Is it comfortable enough to get in flow and write for a solid stretch of time?

2. Begin.

Do just a tiny bit. Inertia is the tendency of objects to continue in their existing state of rest or uniform motion in a straight line at constant velocity. We try to increase our velocity all the time – and sometimes it’s hard to do that. So how do you beat inertia? Do something! If you're having trouble, start with something small, THEN eat the frog.

3. Disable all pop-up notifications.

I'm a broken record about distractions. Turn off all the beeps, buzzes and flashes – they pull your attention away, tax your time and adversely affect your decision-making over time. Read Deep Work, Indistractable, or The Art of Impossible for ideas to tame your technology.

4. Stand up for your phone calls.

Want to spend less time on the phone? Stand up for each call. You’ll inherently shorten the chat so you can sit back down.

5. Don’t sit all day at your desk.

Getting some fresh air, stretching your legs and giving your eyes a break are all good reasons to move around a few times during the day. Don't break flow, but don't push yourself too hard either.

6. Measure your performance.

To make progress toward your goals, track your performance. Trying to post more articles? Track how many minutes you spend writing each day (versus other tasks). Hoping you get more social shares and build a great reputation? Measure time spent, tactics used, and results obtained. Do more of what works and less of what doesn’t.

7. Value your time.

Assign a price to your own time so you can delegate or streamline where you invest time poorly. With many paid services or convenient offerings (like Design Pickle, DepositPhotos, or Mechanical Turk), you can add hours to your week.

8. Manage your energy, not just your time.

I mentioned eating a frog, which refers to doing the most important thing on your task list early in the day (when your energy is high). You’ll have peaks and valleys with your energy, which affects your performance and decision-making. Match your energy to your tasks – early in the day (big, important tasks), late morning (small, important tasks), after lunch (big, important tasks) and late in the day (cleanup and admin tasks).

Get More Work Done This Week

Are you already doing all of these? If so, tip o’ the cap. If not, try one or two of these ideas tomorrow and see how much it helps (and measure it!). Add good habits and trim bad ones. Each hour you save can be used for doing better work, and you’ll get the uptick of accumulating benefits.


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