How to Have a Good Day (2016) explains how you can make the most of your working day, with advice based on recent findings in the fields of psychology, economics and neuroscience. These blinks will teach you how to navigate the challenges of the modern workplace like a pro and boost your energy level during nerve-racking or tiring days.
Have you ever found yourself nearing the end of a day and feeling as if it had been completely wasted? Here are a few tips to help minimize that feeling.
First, clearly set out your intentions for each day and try to eliminate any activities you know tend to distract you from achieving them.
For instance, one of the author’s clients, Martin, is the strategy director of an aircraft manufacturer. He noticed that whenever he felt overwhelmed with his daily tasks, he would turn by default to distracting habits like checking news websites.
So, to increase productivity, identify what those distracting habits are for you and put extra focus on avoiding them. Keep your sights on the day’s goals.
Second, frame your goals in positive language. Goals framed positively can also be called approach goals – that is, goals that state the positive outcome you’re hoping to achieve, such as “make my product irresistible.” The contrast to this would be an avoidance goal, like “stop losing customers.”
There is research to back up the benefits of this strategy: a 1997 study found that students using approach goals improved their performance, whereas the opposite was true for those using avoidance goals.
Third, make a when-then plan to prepare for obstacles that could come between you and your goals.
Take the author, who is not naturally an early bird. When she founded her own consulting business and no longer had a boss expecting her at work at nine in the morning, she was tempted to sleep in and while away her mornings.
So she committed to a when-then plan to overcome this obstacle: when I wake up, first I’ll take a short walk, then I’ll check my e-mails. This little rule helps get her out of bed and face each day in a good mood.