11 Productivity Tips for when You’re Up Against a Deadline {Infographic}

11 Productivity Tips for when You’re Up Against a Deadline {Infographic}

There are many reasons why you might need to give yourself an extra boost when you’re working long hours. Perhaps you have been held back late at work, with a big deadline coming up. Perhaps you are trying to get your own business started, and you can only rely on yourself to get the job done. Maybe you’re studying hard for an exam, or you have a big art project that somebody is expecting to be delivered ASAP.

Whatever the conditions, there are a number of techniques you can use to help squeeze a couple more hours productivity from your day. From brain hacks to body workouts, it’s worth getting to know these productivity cheats ahead of a busy time in your life.

A good place to start is with a good old-fashioned ‘To Do’ list. Your mind can get clogged up when you have a lot of tasks to complete within a short amount of time, so it’s helpful to have an objective document to which you can return when you’re not sure what to do next. Do it at the start of the day, when your mind is fresh and you still have your whole schedule ahead of you: prioritize difficult and urgent tasks for the top of the list, and leave repetitive or admin work for later, when you will appreciate working on auto-pilot for a while!

Within this list, you should account for a certain amount of ‘communications admin’ – checking your emails, making necessary phone calls, and replying to messages. This period should be strictly scheduled so that you don’t find yourself drifting to your inbox or social media when you are meant to be doing something else. It might help to log out of your accounts and hide your phone from view: researchers have shown that even the sight of your phone can distract you.

Your schedule should also include regular breaks. It only takes 30 seconds breathing space to make you more productive, but consider factoring in a five-minute break every 25 minutes if you have time, and at least every 50 minutes even if you’re pushed for time. This can be a great opportunity to pick up your things and walk to a coffee shop or library to work in a fresh environment for a while – a technique that can increase your creativity and concentration.

And how about performance-enhancing substances? Legal ones, of course! Water is the most essential fluid of all, and lack of water can actually cause fatigue in the first place – so it’s best to ensure you’re well-hydrated long before tiredness starts to kick in. Make sure to have a system, such as a bottle with measurement markings so you can always check how much you’ve had.

Peppermint oil makes for another performance enhancer. Keep some on your desk so you can grab a hit whenever you need an alertness boost: you might rub it on your wrists, for example, so that it wafts up to you whenever you begin to overheat!

One controversial option that many claim has helped them to power through is the ‘bulletproof coffee’. This is made from black coffee, with added butter and coconut oil to boost your brain’s cognitive function. It’s certainly not one to drink every day if you want to stay healthy, but the occasional shot when you’re on a deadline may just make the difference.

So there we have a few good options to push you the extra yard when you’re already exhausted – but for a few more tips, check out this amazing new infographic from STL. Get your deadline game sorted ahead of that tough day, and it is sure to pass more productively.

Editorial Team
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