Essential qualities every great leader has
How to negotiate a promotion

Knowing how to stay productive throughout a day is a highly desired skill, especially in today’s technological age where there are so many distractions in the form of buzzers and notifications. It is important to maintain productivity, both at work and at home, in order to keep our minds sharp and active.

Productivity is greatly linked to self-control, as it keeps you focused and on track. The majority of the world’s top performers are highly emotionally intelligent, the hallmark of which is self-control. So how do you get to that level? Here are a few realistic tips of how to stay productive:

How to stay productive

Plan your day out

If you know what you need to do, you have a clear path to provide structure to your day. This way, the things that need to get done actually get done. Having a physical checklist might be handy. Ideally you should do this at the start of every day, or the night before. All you then have to do is FOLLOW IT. As you complete your tasks, tick them off. Besides holding you accountable, the checklist is great for providing a sense of accomplishment when seeing all those ticks at the end of a day.

Avoid social media

When you’re working, you need to be focusing on that. Having your phone go off every few minutes with new minutes and notifications will distract you. Keep your phone on silent when you are working. Go a step further and leave it face down so that you cannot see new notifications popping up, keeping temptation at bay. Remember, distraction is the enemy of productivity!

Build the perfect playlist

It has been documented that music helps with productivity. Many suggest music without words, but music taste is subjective. Some people find jazz soothing, others think classical music keeps their mind alert. Personally, I’m writing this blog while listening to rap music that is keeping my mind pumping and awake. Whatever your vibe, build a work playlist to keep you focused. You can download white noise apps that can also play the sound of wind or rainfall if you like a more natural sound. Or, if you’re lazy, Sound Cloud has curated playlists dedicated to studying/working. Another plus to having a music playlist: with your earphones in, you can’t hear office sounds that distract you from your work.


Some say a messy desk is a sign of a genius. Others say its distraction central. Keeping an organized workspace helps clear your mind and provides a visually pleasing environment. Furthermore, by keeping your workspace organized, it provides ease of access, because everything has a specific place. No longer would you have to spend 15 minutes looking for that one memo buried under notepads and miscellaneous items. Plan out an organisational system that works for you to keep both you workspace and your mind clear of clutter.

Take a break!

This may seem counter-intuitive, but it is so important to allow your mind time to relax and refresh. Figure out a work/break schedule that is realistic for you. For example, working half an hour, taking a 10 minute break.  What you do in that break is important though. Try taking a walk in the fresh air, meditating, or doing some stretches. Even reading a chapter from a book or a magazine article will help calm your brain down.

Importantly, you need to ensure that these are SCHEDULED breaks. Unscheduled breaks can break your workflow. If you don’t trust yourself, there exists internet-blocking software like Freedom that block your computer from accessing the internet set periods.

What helps you stay productive? Let us know in the comments below!

Read about the social media mistakes you are making HERE.

Essential qualities every great leader has
How to negotiate a promotion
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