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We have always been taught that in order to succeed, one must work hard. We are programmed to believe that there is no substitute for hard work. This is true to a great extent too but we also need to work smart. We need to apply techniques that may seem unconventional to achieve more by doing less, but as long as they get the job done, there is nothing to worry about. When we are faced with immense pressure at the workplace or in life in general and there is just too much to do we wish we would have an extra hour on our clock. But to fight the lack of time, patience, and energy, and to deal with obligations, it not an extra hour that we need. Instead, the key to achieving more is to do less.

Take more breaks: 

When we are presented with a major project in our life, our first approach to deal with it is to sit down at our desks and focus only on the task until it is completed. This approach does not seem to work efficiently. It only wears you down and the monotony of the task only adds to the building frustration. Instead of staying hyper-focused on the task for a long stretch, you need to break these periods of intense focus into shorter durations and take a recess in between. By changing the activity that you are performing regularly throughout the day enables the brain to operate at its maximum capacity and get more work done in less time.

Make and follow a morning routine: 

Willpower is one of the most important resources that we have with us. It helps us in making judgements and decisions and sticking to them. But it is a depleting resource, i.e., the more decisions we make the less of willpower we are left with. In order to preserve this important resource for important and greater decision we need to make in the day, we need to follow a routine of things that we do daily. The morning rituals should be done in a routine because when we do the same thing in the same order daily, we do not need to be making decisions about them. Also, you should keep your smartphone away from the bed. Otherwise, when you check the notifications the first thing in the morning and reply to emails and texts, they use your willpower even before you have left the bed.

Fewer options are better:

When we are required to go through the available options we think the more we have on hand, the better. This is not always true because you keep on going through all the options that match your criteria and deciding which will do the best for you. It takes a lot of time and energy. You need to understand that not everything needs to be the best, sometimes even the ‘good enough’ is really enough. So, set some criteria that make an option successful and as soon as you find the first option that meets your criteria, abandon the search. Devote the time you saved doing and achieving something else.

Say NO:

We are captured by the idea that the more we have on our plate, the more important we are. Busyness is not a marker of importance. You can be busy all day doing stuff that has no importance to anyone at all. Busyness is just busyness. When you are presented with a task evaluate your feelings towards it, weigh in the other commitments that you have made and say yes only to those things that truly motivate and inspire you. To every other thing, learn to say no, because if we accept to do things that we are not passionate about they not only take longer to get done but also have a relatively less chance of contributing to our success.

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