Money Matters: Productive Habits

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Wednesday, November 30th, 2011

A lot of us rush around at work, and there is never enough time in the day.

But highly productive people know how to use their time wisely. Alexandra Gekas of Women's Day magazine has some habits we should all use to become more productive on the job.

1. They make it a point to take breaks.

Taking breaks is a way of hitting the reset button. It helps you clear your mind. So don't eat lunch at your desk. Get away from the phone and your work so you can come back fresh.

2. They start their day off on the right foot.

Studies show if you arrive at work in a bad mood, that will decrease your productivity by as much as 10%. So start the day off with a smile and ease into the morning.

3. They keep a flexible to-do list.

Making a list is a great way to stay on top of your work. Just be ready to make changes as needed.

4. They use technology with intent.

You've got to check your email. But try to limit yourself to between 15 and 30 minutes a day to look at email, Facebook and the like. If you don't set limits you'll find you're spending too much time on the internet instead of getting work done. Sometimes it's faster to call someone then respond to a work email, so be efficient.

5. They balance their workload.

Divide your work into weeds and intensive work. Weeds are the simple tasks like email and phone calls that don't require much concentration. Take a break from intensive work now and then to pull some weeds. That way you accomplish something and won't get burned out on the big task.

6. They know how to say no.

Say no to whiners, complainers and distracting people. Unless it's the boss.

Wear headphones if you have to in order to keep people from bugging you. Unless it's the boss.

You can't be everywhere and do everything, so learn how to tell people no.

Unless it's the boss.

Those are the six habits for highly productive people, but you may have some of your own. If so, go for it!

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