Focus

19 Tiny Office Changes to Make Work Drastically More Productive

19 Tiny Office Changes to Make Work Drastically More Productive

You are only as productive as your environment. So let’s get your main work environment, your office, as productive as possible.

Here are 19 tiny changes (with affiliate links to products that I’ve personally used to enhance my productivity) that can do exactly that. Try one, or try them all. The more changes, the more you’ll find you have the clarity, focus, time, and energy to work on what matters.

The Only Two Things You Need to Focus On What Matters

The Only Two Things You Need to Focus On What Matters

Mass confusion struck in droves, and baby turtles were scattered everywhere.

It was 9:30 pm in Topsail North Carolina and we were walking along the beach toward our beach rental home to hustle the kids into bed and watch as many episodes of Handmaids Tale as we could before becoming deliriously tired.

Ten minutes earlier, we had wandered passed two lines of people lounging in beach chairs. Some had beers in hand. All were chatting quietly. 

On any other night, seeing people drinking and chatting on the beach would have been routine. But tonight, two extremely strange behaviors of this crowd caught my attention:

First, everyone was lined up the wrong way; not parallel with the water, but perpendicular to it. Two rows of people, arms width apart, beginning at the base of the dune and extending down into the ocean wash.

Odd.

Second, there was a strange excitement in the air. The kind of excitement you might feel in the moments leading up to a surprise birthday party; the quiet anticipation of a big event.

Come to find out, we were about to witness just such an event. 

3 Immediate Mindset Changes to Drastically Improve Your Life

3 Immediate Mindset Changes to Drastically Improve Your Life

I can attest from first-hand experience that striking out sucks.

It doesn't matter how you do it.

Swinging under a ball for that third strike feels like opening a drain to let all the potential flow out of your body. No base hit. No home run. No chance to be the hero in front of an audience of cheering fans.

41 Ways to Get Home Early Every Day This Week

𝗧𝗵𝗲 𝗡𝗶𝗴𝗵𝘁 𝗕𝗲𝗳𝗼𝗿𝗲

1. Get 7 hours of sleep
2. Lay out daily clothes in advance
3. Block calendar for important work
4. Schedule commute time
5. Schedule breaks
6. Plan to deal with time obstacles
7. Schedule administrivia

𝗜𝗻 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗠𝗼𝗿𝗻𝗶𝗻𝗴

8. Exercise
9. Eat healthy food that energizes you
10. Tell everyone when you plan to leave
11. When work begins, begin work (don’t get distracted)

𝗙𝗼𝗿 𝗠𝗲𝗲𝘁𝗶𝗻𝗴𝘀

12. Squeeze meetings together
13. Focus (or leave) meetings that aren’t productive
14. Reschedule meetings that start late
15. Hold stand up meetings
16. Decline meetings where you can’t contribute
17. Add buffer between meetings and tasks

𝗠𝗮𝗻𝗮𝗴𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗧𝗮𝘀𝗸𝘀

18. Schedule important tasks
19. Prioritize urgent tasks
20. Delegate unimportant tasks
21. Delete the rest of your tasks
22. Limit emailing to 3x per day
23. Automate repetitive tasks with apps like IFTTT
24. Bundle similar tasks together
25. Set a timer for your tasks

𝗗𝘂𝗿𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗪𝗼𝗿𝗸

26. Begin with the end in mind
27. Minimize distractions
28. Stick to your schedule
29. Delegate
30. Work on what matters
31. Focus with music
32. Work intensely
33. Take breaks often
34. Work when everyone else isn’t

𝗔𝗱𝗺𝗶𝗻𝗶𝘀𝘁𝗿𝗶𝘃𝗶𝗮

35. Call instead of email
36. Send shorter emails… get to the point
37. Only read emails where you are in the to: line

𝗔𝘁 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗘𝗻𝗱 𝗼𝗳 𝗬𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝗗𝗮𝘆

38. Block time before you leave to clean up your day
39. Reduce and remove clutter in your work space

𝗠𝗶𝘀𝗰/𝗗𝗼𝗻’𝘁 𝗙𝗼𝗿𝗴𝗲𝘁

40. Add some greenery to your work space (scientifically proven to increase productivity)
41. Sit, stand, walk, talk, act confidently

Stop Making “Feel Good” Progress and Put a Real Dent in Your Goals

Have you ever completed a task, written it down, and then checked it off after the fact?

It’s okay. You can admit it :-). Almost everybody does.

It gives you a sense of completeness. It makes you feel good. Like, your brain literally releases dopamine to your body, the feel good chemical.

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There’s nothing inherently wrong with this.

But take care not change your mindset from making important progress to making “feel-good” progress.

✅ Call the dentist? Check.
✅ Send that email? Check.
✅ Walk the dog? Check.
⬜️ Build a product strategy aligned with a new target market? Hmmmm... maybe I’ll walk the dog again.

If you start craving that dopamine hit, you stop working on what’s important and start looking for the fastest or easiest thing to do.

And while you’ll always have easy work to do, be sure to keep an eye toward what’s important, what will make a dent in your goals, and what will leave a lasting impact.

✅ New blog post done? Check.


About the Author

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Michael Mehlberg

HUSBAND, FATHER, ENTREPRENEUR, BUSINESS STRATEGIST, AUTHOR, FITNESS NUT, ORGANIZATION FREAK, PRODUCTIVITY JUNKIE

I help high-achieving entrepreneurs live their passion and achieve their dreams by consistently saving time, getting productive, and being more efficient and organized.

Subscribe to my free, short, 60-second newsletter for tips, tricks, links, products, and other discoveries to becoming a more purposeful, passionate, and productive human.

How to Crush Your Day Without Another Silly Life Hack

How to Crush Your Day Without Another Silly Life Hack

There’s a feeling you get at the end of the day when you know you’ve crushed it.

You’ve accomplished everything you wanted, maybe more, and now have time to relax, recharge, get a good nights sleep, and head into another victory tomorrow.

Those are the good days.

On other days though, you don’t even know what went wrong.

You spend all day ridiculously busy, yet feel you’ve accomplished nothing. That increases the pressure on you to get more done tomorrow. You feel overwhelmed by everything that needs your attention. What's worse, you can’t get to sleep quickly because you’re up worrying about what a stressful day tomorrow will bring.

What is the difference between those two days?

Fighting Phone Distractions? This Obscure Kitchen Device Will Help

Fighting Phone Distractions? This Obscure Kitchen Device Will Help

Phones aren't the only distraction. Your laptop, a good book, the TV, anything can prevent you from doing those important tasks that will drive your business forward.

There is a simple solution to lock those distractions away, enabling you to get done what you need to get done and move closer to your goals…

One Life Hack Every High Achieving Entrepreneur Should Know

One Life Hack Every High Achieving Entrepreneur Should Know

It was 4 am, and the house had long since settled into its frame after a day of heavy traffic. Every creak had worked itself out. Every computer had gone into hibernation. Every child had sunken into their slumber.

It was calm. Peaceful. Silent.

My sleep, however, was interrupted by a deep, unsettling feeling that something was wrong. I gasped for air, sucking in oxygen quickly as if my head was forcefully plunged into a bucket of cold water. My eyes shot wide open, searching for the source of trouble, unable to find it in the black of night.

End Distracting Texts Once and For All (Without Turning Off Notifications)

End Distracting Texts Once and For All (Without Turning Off Notifications)

Yes, texts are an amazing instant communication tool. No, I'm not suggesting we turn text messaging off completely. It's just that the assumed commitment to a conversation is what often derails from our work. And losing focus is exactly what separates the busy from the productive. 

So, how do we keep our ability to stay in immediate touch without disabling texts completely? 

Finding Clarity with a Line of Sight

Finding Clarity with a Line of Sight

She shifted her weight hastily from one foot to the other, clearly irritated.

I was too. Irritated, that is.

Her, a hundred other travelers in front of me, and I had chosen the wrong line at the airport, and security was moving us through their checkpoint at a snails pace.

The line to my left seemed like a racetrack by comparison. Each of the travelers walked confidently toward the checkpoint faster than American Pharoe to the Triple Crown. They seemed happy, almost cheery (or so my imagination told me).

That’s when this woman in front of me made her break for freedom.

Minimizing Risks vs. Maximizing Gains in Business

One word.

It’s the most common investment advice you hear.  

You do it with your assets, your wealth, investment types, even investors.  

Diversify.  

Diversifying protects your downside. It prevents massive losses and minimizes risks to your portfolio. Diversifying is arguably one of the most important concepts for wealth management. After all, if all your eggs are in one basket, you can’t afford to drop it. 

But diversifying isn’t the way to maximize growth in business. Quite the opposite. 

In business, you must constantly stay ahead. You must find your unique perspective and use it to claim (and protect) a portion of your market. Then, with that as a foothold, you have to grow your market share and squeeze out the competition, or at least prevent your competitors from encroaching on your territory.  

To do that requires learning — continuous, focused learning.

Take, for example, a “diversified business owner.” He spends one part of his day selling technology, then rushes over to work on marketing for a bakery, finally finishing the day with a trip to his hair salon to manage the books.

Clearly this is not optimal.  

The problem is, this owner can’t apply the lessons he learned in from business to the next. His actions are fragmented and unfocused. He can’t use the experiences from one company to make the next better.  

Entrepreneurship requires focus.  

Focus on learning the right things. Focus on learning the right skills. Focus on applying what you learn to run a more efficient, productive, and profitable business. 

When it comes to your investments, diversify. When it comes to your business, focus.  

About The Author

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Mike Mehlberg

Co-Founder | Focus Master

Mike just crushes focus and productivity in business for entrepreneurs. Right when they feel the weight of too many things to do, Mike can jump in and focus their efforts on achieving their vision and goals. Just don’t ask him about investing... 

Top Challenges (and Solutions) of 11 Business Owners Who Have Been Through the Grinder and Come Out On Top

Top Challenges (and Solutions) of 11 Business Owners Who Have Been Through the Grinder and Come Out On Top

The theme on Charles Street was hard to ignore, though most did. Hundreds of locals passed dozens of storefronts by the hour, largely oblivious to the marketing efforts of each business, silently trapped in their own heads. Their feet carried them mindlessly to their destination. Few stopped to shop.

I, on the other hand, couldn't help myself. Every window display captured my attention. Every smell from every bakery turned my head. The very bricks of the sidewalk, now cracked and gnarled and settled from over 200 years of foot traffic, guided me from one store to the next. While others were lost in their thoughts, I was captivated by the intersection of history and modern-day small business... and I wondered of the story for every small business on the street. 

Knowing from experience how difficult it is to start, run, and build and grow a business, I wanted to hear how they did it. How did they get started? What gave them the most success? How did they deal with the daily challenges of keeping their (literal) doors open? 

If only they could tell me, and I could share their experiences, the challenges they've faced and the problems they've solved could help thousands of business owners like themselves. 

The following article is that help. Not from the handful of brick-and-mortar stores in Beacon Hill, Boston, but from business owners running every kind of business throughout the world.

The Cure for Uncertainty, Lost Focus, and Lack of Motivation in Your Business

The Cure for Uncertainty, Lost Focus, and Lack of Motivation in Your Business

It's debilitating, isn't it?

Not knowing if you are on the right path. The uncertainty of whether what you are working on will bring you success.

You work and work. You push from every angle to make an inch of progress Only to look up one day and find yourself lost; unsure if what you are doing is getting you anywhere, worried that you are missing something.

It's a hard feeling to shake.

When this uncertainty hits, it saps your motivation. Your focus and clarity transform into a gloomy cloud of doubt hanging overhead, raining worry and dissatisfaction upon you.

Every business owner knows this feeling.

How to Stay on Track (and Massively Productive) Every Day

How to Stay on Track (and Massively Productive) Every Day

You know what's coming... 

At the end of today, you'll either feel a sense of accomplishment, or like you've wasted another day. 

It's not that you didn't work hard. 

You answered emails. You took phone calls. You attended meetings. You made decisions. 

But for some reason you got nothing done. 

Well, that's not true. You got a lot of other people's work done, just not your own. 

You've made little progress toward your goals. You've been running around solving other people's problems. You've been answering other people's questions, and spending time in other people's meetings.

In other words, you've been working on urgent, but not important tasks. 

There's a solution to this problem. A way to move closer to your goals every day. 

How to Get Superhuman Productivity with One Remarkable App

How to Get Superhuman Productivity with One Remarkable App

It’s no secret, you’re pressed for time.

You wear multiple hats, share multiple responsibilities, and have more things to do than there are hours in the day.

Maybe you’ve even committed to being more productive or focused in the new year.

Superhuman productivity you say? I’ll take two helpings of that.

After all, with so many demands on your time, being able to accomplish your goals while still saving time for family, self-improvement, and relaxation sounds like a dream.

But where do we start?

There are literally thousands of productivity tips and apps on the Internet… every one claiming to give you that dream.

This isn’t “yet another productivity tip.”

This is a way to organize your learning, clean up your computer, educate yourself using spare moments in your day (like driving), and literally read your news and articles twice as fast as you can today.

Superhuman. Productivity.

Let’s get focused. Let’s get productive. Let’s stop procrastinating. And let’s download an app to help.

Four Lessons Motorcycles Taught Me About Focus

Four Lessons Motorcycles Taught Me About Focus

Focus is that state of being we desire when solving challenging problems. Focus is the awareness we need when cramming for a final exam. Focus is the differentiator between the most successful entrepreneurs and those that struggle on. As important as it is and try as we might, achieving focus can be one of the most demanding and frustrating areas in our lives.