The first few hours of every workday can have a significant impact on the following 6 to 8 hours. These hours are often spent planning out your day and setting work priorities to increase productivity. However, imagine how much more productive you could be in these first hours, if all your planning was already done.
The key to a successful morning is a proper ending to the previous day. Use the below tips to plan an effective day the night before.
Assess Your To-Do List.
Towards the end of your workday, take a look at your to-do list. Check off the tasks you’ve accomplished and highlight the ones you haven’t finished. Are there tasks that still need to be completed today, or can they wait for tomorrow? Make sure you have accomplished as much as you can and are satisfied with where you are on your projects. If there are tasks that can quickly be checked off, stay until you finish them. This will save you from having to squeeze them into your schedule the following day.
Review Your Calendar.
Glance at your calendar for the following day to make sure you’re aware of any meetings or calls that you need to prepare for. It can help to make a mental or physical note of what is on your agenda first thing tomorrow. Schedule time in between those meetings to accomplish the tasks on your to-do list that you didn’t get done today.
Put a Plan in Writing.
Make a list of everything you need to get accomplished tomorrow and devise a plan to accomplish those tasks. Grab your calendar, a notepad, or open a document on your computer—it’s important that your plan be written down somewhere. Putting a plan into writing will help prevent disasters that arise from forgetting important tasks.
Prioritize Goal-Oriented Tasks
Goal-oriented tasks move us towards getting an objective accomplished. Acknowledge which goal-oriented items on your to-do list have to be completed the first. Estimate how much time it will take to do each of these, and block off that time on your calendar.
Take Care of Any Housekeeping.
The end of the day is the best time to take care of little things you did not have time to get done during peak working hours. Catch up on email, tie up any loose ends, and tidy up your work area. Walking into a mess the next morning (literally and figuratively) is not nurturing to productivity.
Leave Stress at the Door.
A great benefit of preparing for your workday the night before is that it lifts a heavy weight off your shoulders. You can wrap up your work feeling confident about the following day, leaving your stress behind when you step out of the office to head home. In turn, you will be more likely to relax and sleep more soundly, aiding in an energetic start to the next day!
Using these steps to plan your day in advance will help make your workdays more efficient in no time. If you found these tips valuable, be sure to check out more tips for the workplace from a leading architecture, engineering and construction firm, RealStreet Staffing. For more information on our recruiting and staffing services, contact a recruiter today.