Working hard doesn’t always mean you’re getting important things done, and getting them done well. Instead of focusing on working hard, put your attention and motivation into working smart. Here’s our guide on how to work smarter not harder.

Use Lists with Goals

Plan out your days with specific tasks and goals along with those tasks. Plan a day ahead by writing out your goals for the next day and it will also help with stress leaving you refreshed.

With specific lists and goals, you will be more productive by knowing what you are doing exactly and it will be easier to measure. This is a great approach to work smarter not harder. Use tools like Trello, Todist, and Asana to track goals and lists for increased productivity, or, if you like the old fashioned way use paper.  

Tip: Plan your goals with small actionable. Instead of large goals that are both overwhelming and surprisingly unactionable, you can achieve big accomplishments with little steps each day.  

Don’t Neglect the Recharge

All work and no play aren’t going to help your productivity. Get outside, get away from technology, and other things that relate to your daily work. Recharging is a vital part of working smart because having worked in your mind is never a smart way to work.

Dedicate some time into your schedule to get away from it all, even if it’s already too busy with a schedule, delegate and move some tasks around.

Don’t Mix Recharge With Reflecting

For many people, recharging will mean reflecting on what they accomplished that day, how productive it was for them and how it defines tomorrow. This isn’t the way you need to recharge, recharging means to get away and relieve the stresses of reflecting and your work.

Aside from recharging, dedicate a smaller amount of time outside of recharging to begin reflecting. Go over what you have accomplished, which of those things were most valuable to you, and get to those things more so in the future.

Start Off With The Most Important

Go against the grain on starting your day off right. With most of the workforce doing the easiest and less resource intensive tasks in the beginning of the day, begin your day with the most important or heaviest lifting to do for the day.

Learn to Say No

This resolution is as tough as it is highly rewarding.

We all need to stop saying “Yes” to everything that comes our way. The things we say yes to our probably many smaller things that lean away from those plans that are important and have long term benefits. Politely say no, and be tough about it, don’t back down. You need to focus on the long-term beneficial tasks, not the tasks that will ultimately slow you down and achieve zero results.

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