Updated: Nov 25
3 hours have passed and you've well exceeded the time you originally allotted to complete a task...
But you barely even made a dent in it.
Whether it's studying for an upcoming exam,
working on a job-related project,
or even cleaning your apartment.
We often take WAY too long to get sh*t done because instead of actually working efficiently at a task we are working distracted.
Your iPhone, and social media in general, kills your productivity. Technology is a great tool, but should always be limited.
The urge to constantly refresh your social media feeds and the instant phone pickup when a notification lights up on your home screen could be contributing to the fact it takes you 3 times as long as it should to complete a task.
Besides iPhone related distractions,
constantly checking and responding to emails that can definitely wait
multi-tasking on too many projects at once
getting easily side tracked by others and/or your environment
could be culprits responsible for your inability to control the clock.
It's time to minimize these distractions and skyrocket your productivity.
Deep Work Sprints.
Many successful people across various industries carve out chunks of time in their calendar to do
“deep work” – that is, dedicated blocks of time with minimal distractions, noise or other external stimuli.
Here's the hack that will drastically reduce the time it takes you to complete tasks.
Step #1 - Pick ONE task
(Study for Chem, do my Econ homework, work on an excel-based project, write a newsletter, etc.)
No multi-tasking allowed.
Step #2 - Use your phone, watch, or other tech tool to set a 30-45 minute interval
You will experiment with anywhere in the 30-45 minute time frame to see what suits your attention span best.
Step #3 - Place your phone physically out of reach
Having your phone physically out of reach (or if you're super disciplined just out of sight) eliminates the wasted time spent during mindless social media scrolls and picking up the phone promptly when a notification goes off.
Step #4 - Work until the timer goes off
You're ready... the timer has been set and your phone is out of reach. GO time for the deep work sprint sesh.
Step #5 - When the time goes off, take a 15 minute break
You sprint hard doing deep work for 30-45 minutes then when the timer’s up it's time to step away for up to 15 minutes. Scroll through social media, have a snack, get some water, go on a walk… go frickin nuts. Then bang, time for another 30+ min distraction free sesh followed by another mini break.
Step #6 - Repeat "Sprint-Mini break" Cycles then take a longer break
30+ minute sprint then max 15 minute break. = 1 session.
Repeat then take a longer break after a max of 4 sessions.
You’ll get more done in these shorter, deep work sprint sessions VS. a 3 hour distracted, interrupted work session.
Structuring my work days like this has skyrocketed my efficiency and drastically reduced the time it takes me to complete projects. I’m able to get into a flow of deep work, take a break, then come back refreshed and ready to do another sprint sesh.
If we don’t control the clock, it controls us. By putting the principle of Deep Work Sprints into play, you can increase your output significantly - all while maintaining an effective balance between focus and rest time.
Try deep work sprints next time you need to complete a school or work related task!