7 Tasks to Carry Out at the Start of Each Work Day14th September 2015 | George Atkins
Work is usually where we spend most of our waking hours and remaining productive in a job role, every day for months at a time is no small feat. Establishing and maintaining a high level of concentration throughout the day can be difficult, especially if you start off that day in the wrong way, so here we have compiled a list of 7 do’s to help you make the most of each working day and hopefully fulfil your productive potential!
Eat a Proper Breakfast
It is often called the most important meal of the day; and for a valid reason, it turns out. Breakfast sets you up for each productive work day, giving you the energy and drive to excel in your morning work tasks. Breakfast is shown to boost your cognitive functions by increasing glucose levels in the body and as any avid Lucozade drinker will tell you, this keeps us energised, enabling us to get motivated each and every work day. It is guaranteed to improve and maintain our mental and physical health as well, so keep that in mind when you turn down those Cheerios in the morning.
Arrive on Time
Arriving late is considered unprofessional and unorganised at the best of times but when attributed to work, it can be detrimental to your concentration levels as well. Getting in late means there is no time to mentally prepare for your daily workload, stressing you out unnecessarily, hampering your productivity and inevitably leaving you struggling to get motivated. Be sure to notify someone if you are definitely going to be late, offer your apologies and promise to try and not let it happen again!
Organise/ Plan Out Your Day
An obvious tip here; organising the tasks of your work day should be one of the first things you do when arriving at the office. This way, no time will be wasted blindly ploughing into tasks without a ‘hierarchy of importance’ set up first. Improved productivity is the name of the game here; try and get into a daily routine of planning, this way it will come naturally to you even if you’re not mentally awake when arriving at work; you will automatically start delegating yourself tasks of high importance which will enable you to have the most productive day possible. You should always prioritise the most important tasks for completion first thing in the morning, when your energy and concentration levels are (hopefully) at their highest and you’re at your least distracted.
Organise Your Workspace
A clear desk means a clear mind; this refers to maintaining concentration in the workplace, and if your desk/ office space is unkempt then it serves as just another distraction. An unorganised work area means wasting time sifting through messy drawers for important documents and reaching around dirty coffee mugs to access folders, for instance. Cleaning is not something anyone enjoys doing, but removing any unwanted clutter or rubbish is essential to maximise your productivity throughout your work day.
Catch Up with Colleagues
Your working day shouldn’t be just work, we as humans need time to converse with other humans to remain comfortable in the working environment. Take a few minutes after organising your day to chat with co-workers, check in, see how they’re doing. This is important for maintaining high moral and productivity, especially if you are working in a team/ group of people who you rely on to carry out certain tasks as well. Remember, you are seeing these people most days of the week so it’s always best to be friendly and establish strong communicative bonds with them. It’s also possible that they might be your boss one day or be able to provide a strong character reference in the future, so keep this in mind you decide to blank your desk neighbour.
Listen to Your Phone Messages and Check Email
This relates back to organising and planning out your work day; these two tasks are very important, allowing you to deal with any issues raised by customers, altered meeting appointments and so on. Checking emails and phone messages should be the first thing you do when arriving at work, enabling you to quickly move on to more important tasks. This is not an excuse to go on social media by the way! There is a time for that, namely on your lunch break.
Make Sure to Take a Break Every 90 Minutes
Your concentration levels begin to dip after 90 minutes, so it’s important to give your brain a rest after each of these intervals. Simply by going for a walk, resting your eyes, going to make a coffee for example, you are giving your concentration levels a helping hand, allowing you to come back and continue working at your optimum. Not convinced? Look here. It really does increase your productivity and reduce stress at the same time, preventing you from becoming easily tired out by large workloads.