The most successful people in this world aren’t just the smartest or most creative. One trait the nearly all wildly successful individuals share is the ability to master productivity and effectiveness. If you work for 14 hours a day you may be working hard but are you being effective? Those who are able to maximize efficiency throughout the workday will simply get more done than others.
When it comes to this ability there isn’t a single formula to follow. In fact, it really depends on how you personally operate. That said there are behavioral patterns that you may want to take note of.
Here are six daily rituals you should perform if you want to maximize efficiency.
1. Prioritize Sleep
Those who continue to put off sleep to get more work hours in aren’t doing themselves any favors. If you want to sustain high levels of both mental and physical energy you need to have a good nights rest. It’s that simple. You should always shoot for about 7-8 hours of sleep a night and make sure you develop a routine. The more disciplined you are about a sleep schedule the better.
2. Try to Be An Early Riser
If you just aren’t a morning person, this may not apply to you. That said, you don’t know until you actually try it. Waking up at 5:00am for 2-3 days and then quitting because you’re tired simply won’t cut it. As I mentioned above you need to condition yourself to alternative sleep schedules.
Truth is, the early morning is the only time of the day that you have to yourself. You can use this time to catch up on the news or to be creative. Point is we have very few hours during the day when we can be undistracted so if you can, try to use the early hours of the morning to your advantage.
3. Designate Tasks For Your ‘Peak Hours’
Work smart not hard. You need to live by that rule if you want to maximize efficiency. One of the best ways to do so is to designate certain hours of the day to be your peak performance hours. Nobody works at the same level of productivity all day. Some are most effective in the morning while others work better in the afternoon. That said you should organize your calendar to have your most strenuous tasks during your most productive part of the day.
4. Exercise Every Single Day
Body, Mind, and Spirit. If you want to perform at the highest level you need to keep all aspects of your life healthy. You should aim to exercise every single day to take care of your body. Even if it’s a 30-minute walk around lunch time it makes a huge difference.
As you exercise your body will release endorphins which will keep you energized and motivated to tackle the rest of the day. Because of that, I suggest you exercise in the mornings so you can really take advantage of that natural high.
5. Prioritize Time to Decompress
We all lead very busy lives. Some of us are so busy that we forget to take breaks. If you continue to power through your workday without taking any time to recharge you’ll begin to do more harm than good. Studies show that we need to take breaks in order to stay productive. You need to schedule at least two to three times throughout the day where you consciously remove yourself from work and decompress. Even if it’s for five or ten minutes it’ll make a huge difference in the long run.
6. Simplify Your Schedule
Last but not least if you want to maximize efficiency you need to keep a clean and simple schedule. Instead of having 15 different task and meetings try to use larger time blocks for knocking out your duties. In addition you should always evaluate whether or not you need to attend every meeting on your calendar. If you take 15 minutes to simply your schedule each day you’ll become an expert at time management in no time.
Success isn’t given, it’s earned. If you want to achieve greatness you need to condition your body, mind, and spirit to constantly improve and perform and maximum efficiency. Once you’ve achieved your goals then you can rest. Until then you should look to perform these six daily rituals so you can work at maximum efficiency.
Renzo Costarella is an entrepreneur, avid learner, and startup enthusiast currently living in Silicon Valley. He consults for several startups in the Bay Area and is pursuing a few ideas of his own.