How to Get More Done with Less Effort

Some days just feel hard. Your leadened limbs sag. Your mind feels as spritely as that overstretched rubber band you found under the couch. But you have a million and one things to do in the next 6 hours. You hunker down and force yourself into the grind, struggling through each and every moment until that glorious hour when your head hits the pillow. Then, the alarms blare. Lather and repeat.

A lot of us are all too familiar with this cycle. We push ourselves too hard out of the gates and end up suffering all week long as a result. We are over-efforting through life, and it’s a real joy suck. But, believe it or not, it is possible to actually get more done with less effort. Life doesn’t need to be a slog. In fact, it shouldn’t be. Hit the easy button with these tips to free yourself from the cycle of daily struggle.

Delegate tasks. Control freak? Controlling things takes a lot of effort and it’s not really making your work any better.

To increase your productive output with ease, it’s important to be okay with delegating or automating more menial tasks. Why worry about remembering to pay your health insurance? Just automate a recurring payment. Have bills that change every month? Use your technology to send you a reminder ahead of time and use sites like mint.com to organize all your payments in one easy place. And don’t shy away from accepting help from your friends and family. If someone else offers the pick up the groceries so you can grab a snack in the middle of a busy day, let them.

Take care of yourself. You don’t win a prize by doing everything for everyone. You just become tired and more useless to everyone, including yourself. Delegating out the easier tasks whenever you can will help you focus your efforts on what really deserves your attention.

Embrace lists. Sure, you may have a decent memory, but do you really need to be juggling your entire schedule around in your head all week? That’s a lot of mental work for not much payoff.

Give your brain a break by writing/typing it all down. Rather than trying to remember that you have to go to the dentist at 3 on Friday, you’ll free yourself to think about more important things. Giving your days some structure and parameters through a written schedule, even if you don’t necessarily stick to it, can provide a lot of peace of mind. Peace of mind is code for less effort.

Sync up your schedule with your ebb and flow. We all have our unique ebb and flow to our energy levels. Do you feel most energized early in the morning when the world is still and quiet? Or do your creative juices get bubbly just after dinnertime? Utilize your most creative, productive times of day to accomplish your most challenging tasks.

Personally, I find 5 a.m. to 10 a.m. to be a highly productive window, so in an ideal world I would do all of my creative tasks at that time. Then, I could do more mundane things, like emails, errands and workouts in the afternoon when my mind is a little less peppy. Although I haven’t succeeded at doing this every day, when I do get an early start I find it really easy to get a lot done. It is amazing what you can accomplish by syncing your to-do list with your natural energy flow. So many of us work against the grain in our lives; we make things more difficult for ourselves. Do yourself a favor and plan a daily schedule that serves YOU. You deserve to work with ease.

Remember to rest! Be kind to yourself. Yeah, yeah, we’re all busy. But we all—every single one of us—need time for rest. You absolutely need to fit at least 15 minutes into your day that are totally dedicated to you. And no, scrolling through social media feeds doesn’t count. Relax with some tea at the coffee shop, practice some morning meditation, take a nap or maybe peek outside and absorb some glorious sunlight on your lunch break. If you take time to recuperate, you’ll be astounded at how much easier it is to be productive.

Life should be easy. Reserve your strength for things that truly require your attention by setting yourself up to live easier every day. You’ll not only get a lot more accomplished, but you’ll feel lighter and happier while you’re doing it.

Related:
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85 comments

Jim V
Jim Ven2 months ago

thanks

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Jerome S
Jerome S2 months ago

thanks for sharing.

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Carl R
Carl R4 months ago

Thanks!!!

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natasha s
Past Member 4 months ago

It's always the things one sees as a chore that require so much effort. thanks

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Angela K
Angela K4 months ago

Thanks for sharing

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Carl R
Carl R4 months ago

Thanks!!!

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Caitlin B
Caitlin B4 months ago

thanks for sharing

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Ruth S
Ruth S4 months ago

Thanks.

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Fred Campbell
Fred Campbell4 months ago

Good suggestions.

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Ruth S
Ruth S4 months ago

Thanks.

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