This post is a paid collaboration with Berocca. As always, all words and imagery are my own!
Learning how to manage your own time – whether you’re a freelancer, tackling a to-do list as long as the Great Wall of China on a Sunday afternoon or attempting to fit your side hustle alongside full time hours can be a real struggle. Working ‘smart’ sounds like a simple concept: maximum output in minimum time. In reality, it can be tough to break habits (y’know, like those seven coffee breaks before midday…) and even harder to focus wholly on the task at hand in order to ensure total efficiency. Think of it this way though; fewer hours worked for the same (or more) revenue equals a significantly better work life balance and with that extra down time? The world is your oyster! More sleep and Grey’s Anatomy binging would be my professional suggestion!
Berocca tabs dissolve into a tasty, orange flavoured drink packed with B vitamins, including B1 and B2 to help release energy from your food, and B5 to support mental performance, to help you overcome your daily challenges.
So how? How do you get the same workload done in a fraction of the time? It’s no mean feat that’s for sure and ultimately, like any new skill, working smart requires a bit of dedication and practice. Here are my five tips for getting started…
1. Time yourself completing tasks
Note down the time, then start a stop-watch when you start a new task and pause it whenever you start procrastinating. Making that cuppa that you simply cannot function without, mindlessly scrolling on Instagram, accidentally clicking an Ad banner and falling down an online shopping rabbit hole…whatever. Hit pause, then start the stopwatch again when you resume the actual task at hand. Once you’re done, see how long the task took you in real time (the time on wall clock when you started and finished) versus the actual amount of time you spent working on it (a la your stopwatch). Scary, isn’t it…
2. Allocate time slots for tasks that can be never-ending
Whether that’s working through your inbox or browsing for your mum’s birthday present, if it’s something you can end up spending unwarranted hours on then set yourself a time limit. Give yourself 20 minutes of online shopping, or 30 minutes on your emails, then stop. Tasks like responding to emails can be literally infinite so you need to set a time limit or you simply won’t get anything else done. Others can just be really distracting and applying a bit of pressure on to yourself will likely make you act more efficiently!
3. Schedule in regular breaks
Sounds counter-productive I know, but your brain needs a moment to switch off and if you’re working on a computer all day then your eyes do too. If you’re working smart then you’re probably doubling your productivity output anyway, so you can afford to take 20 minutes downtime here and there. A great chance to grab a mid-morning snack and a Berocca!
4. Turn your internet off to answer a hectic inbox
Emails are a never-ending task. As soon as you’ve answered 10, 10 new ones have come in and the original 10 have replied. Ever heard of the phrase ‘shoveling snow whilst it’s still snowing’? Switch your Wi-Fi off, clear your inbox and then when you turn it back on the ones you just wrote will send and you’ll get to do the rare ‘empty inbox’ dance. If I’m on the go, the tube and airplanes make a great office for the same reason!
5. Make sure down time is exactly that
If you’re going to work smart then you need to become an expert relaxer too. Don’t spend your down-time answering the odd email, in fact, limit screen time, put your phone away and really relish in being allowed to switch off. I can be really guilty of doing neither well; when I’m working I’m distracted and when I’m relaxing I’m distracted by work.
Planning my days and week, prioritising tasks and goals and ensuring I’m looking after my mind and body by staying hydrated and drinking my Berocca every morning is really helping me to overhaul my lifestyle.
As part of the #NoDayTooTough campaign, Berocca are giving you the chance to win an energising Climb over the O2 (London) for 2! 20 lucky runners up will win a three-month supply of Berocca. Enter on my Instagram post here! T&C’s on the Berocca site.