10 Bad Habits You Need to Break to Be More Productive

We all have bad habits that we can admit to.

Some of these bad habits keep up from being productive.

Others cause us to work harder and impose stress on our lives.

To improve our ability to get things done and reduce the effort required, we need to break these habits.

What habits are keeping you from getting your work done?

Bad Habits = Bad Productivity

Life provides us with enough stress and busyness in our day.

You don’t need to add your own complications to the mix.

Yet, this is exactly what our bad habits do.

Bad habits lead to bad productivity.

They result in self-inflicted stress and affect our ability to get our work done.

It’s time to break these bad habits and free ourselves from extra stress and effort.

Here Are 10 Habits you Must Break to be More Productive:

  1. Multi-tasking – Have you ever been in the middle of one task and then started another, only later to realize that you didn’t finish either? Multi-tasking seems like a good idea at the time, but often leads to many things started and nothing done. Concentrate on the important task until it is finished, before starting something else.
  2. Making Excuses – We have become desensitized to accountability. When something doesn’t get done, we immediately look for something or someone else to blame. As the cliché goes, “Life Isn’t Always Fair.” It doesn’t matter, get your stuff done anyway.
  3. Checking Your Email Repeatedly – How many times do you check email in a day? 10, 20, 50, 100? Stop checking your email. Instead, do your work.
  4. Reading the News Too Much – The news is best consumed in small doses. If you read the news these days there is simply too much. Too much negativity. Too much inaccuracy. Too much wasted time. Don’t endlessly surf the news websites, and instead let the news come to you. Get a few RSS feeds. Read the news once a day.
  5. Having an Unclean Desk – You may be telling yourself (and others) that you know exactly where everything is on your desk. However, a messy desk impedes your ability to efficiently do work. Piles are not organization, so clean them up today.
  6. Complaining – Don’t be one of those people who goes through life complaining instead of doing. If you aren’t happy about something, then do something about it. You can leave your job. You can start new relationships. You can even change yourself if you try hard enough.
  7. Eating a Junk Food Lunch – Eating junk food on a regular basis is a sure-road trip to an unhealthy lifestyle. However, it is also responsible for derailing your energy level in the afternoon. Instead of being a post-lunch zombie, eat a healthy meal that will actually fuel your body.
  8. Skipping Exercise – When things get hectic, one of the first things to go is exercise. “I don’t have time to workout,” is an excuse. (See #2) You do have time to work out. Don’t underestimate exercise’s ability to power your motivation and energy level.
  9. Letting Your Phone Be a Leash – Who is in charge, you or your smartphone? Don’t answer it just because it rings. Don’t jump at every beep, chirp, and vibration. Remember, it is there for your convenience, not the other way around.
  10. Not Doing it Right the First Time – When you don’t give something your all, you end up with a half-done job. As Jeffrey Mayer said, “If you don’t have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it again?” Always bring your A-game, and do it right the first time and do it with class.

Break Bad Habits for Better Productivity

Are your bad habits causing you extra stress or requiring you to work harder?

Examine your habits and see if they are helping or hurting your efforts.

It may be time you replaced a few of those bad habits with better ones.

Question: What bad habits do you have that impact your productivity?

34 thoughts on “10 Bad Habits You Need to Break to Be More Productive

  1. Great article. #2 Making Excuses is the one I’m dealing with right now. I’m having a lot of trouble getting anything done and I’m blaming my crazy life instead of myself. “It doesn’t matter, get your stuff done!” That’s the truth! I’m going to write that at the top of my planner page.

  2. I struggle with multi-tasking.. And exactly for the reason you listed. You start something go to the next task and then the next. Juggling them all at once only to realize you’re not getting anywhere and not finishing anything.

  3. I agree with all your points, possibly apart from 10. Sometimes good enough is enough and trying to do everything perfectly results in procrastination as the perfect time to do the perfect thing never comes. Well that’s me anyway!

  4. Craig, these are all spot on. Multi-tasking is very overrated and you end up doing less than if you completed each task separately.

  5. Lack of time management skills is the main reason for less productive. Everyone is looking for ways to be more productive on the job. In our today’s work environment, staying on task and avoiding distraction is harder to complete than our actual work.

    In order to stay focused and to achieve more productivity, I prefer to use time recording software from Replicon ( http://www.replicon.com/olp/online-time-recording-software.aspx ). I have benefited a lot from it and I’ve also recommended it to my friends. I especially love it for its great time tracking capabilities.

  6. Nice article , Complaining is what I do most often . Is it ok to do multitasking if we are confident enough that good results can be achieved?

  7. I’ve been working on all of these for some time and made good progress on most. #6 absolutely drives me crazy … with other people. It’s so pervasive and can be such a destructive habit. I think that one issue alone would make for a useful blog post.

  8. Great article! Especially advice number 5 is helpful! Having a clean desktop can really help to be more organised and structured! We should remember that there’s not only a bad side to habits, instead habits can also be beneficial because they help us to navigate us our daily lives: habits provide a framework for our days. The older we become, the more habits we have. Do you like our article about changing unpleasant habits? http://goalifyapp.com/en/changing-unpleasant-habits/

  9. The best you can do for yourself and your team is to use the best time keeper app like https://tmetric.com/ to become productive and reach your goals faster. This app has changed my business and approach to the team work. It worth every penny spend on it

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