We all have dips in motivation at work and even in our private lives. The urge to procrastinate can sometimes be overwhelming, and before you know it you're in some deep, dark internet spiral watching videos of hedgehogs stuck in giant croissants. It happens.
So, in the spirit of kicking off the year in a productive way we've compiled some tips for being focused, happy and healthy this year.
1. Plan, Plan, Plan
We all plan our work lives (with varying levels of success) but are less likely to apply the same to our personal lives.
Entrepreneurs and CEOs often recommend scheduling leisure time, whether it's for the gym, relaxation or volunteering, in the same way you would for a meeting, and give it the same level of importance; that way you're more likely to feel satisfied and content come Monday morning.
2. Switch off
Adults spend up to 56 days a year on their phone, that's a LOT of time that could be spent with family, friends, books or that hobby you've always wanted to take up. Stepping away from your phone also means taking a step away from work too, it's hard to really leave work when it's all at your fingertips.
Some easy ways to kick off your digital detox are to leave your phone in another room when you go to sleep and try not to look at it for an hour before bed, the same goes for laptops and iPads. Try not to look at your phone when you're with friends or family, put it away and make sure you're present in the moment instead of idly scrolling.
3. Make meetings meaningful
So many working hours are taken up by meetings, sometimes meetings about meetings, and they can often lack direction and seem largely pointless. We've got some tips for this too - we really love a listicle - from the team at Headspace Group.
Try to get out of the office (ACI have some great suggestions here), a change of scenery can get those creative juices flowing. Always, always have an agenda and stick to a time limit to keep meetings tight.
Whilst multitasking can make you feel like a superhero conquering the world, it's actually not very productive. Flitting between tasks decreases your productivity each time and can mean things take much longer to complete. We work best in short, concentrated bursts of about 20 minutes, so break down your projects into manageable chunks and watch your productivity soar.
5. Look after yourself
That means physically and mentally, you can't be productive if you're burnt out or sick. Make sure you take regular breaks at work, eat properly (away from your desk) and take time to reflect on how you're feeling, giving yourself time to recover if you are ill is equally important.
It's also becoming increasingly normal to discuss mental health, even at work and we want to encourage people and companies to do this across the events industry and beyond. We held a discussion with wellbeing advocates to discuss ways to implement and improve mental health in the workplace, you can watch it here.
6. Move it
I don't think we need to regale all the benefits of regular exercise here (there are a lot) but it's well documented that it helps boost your mood, clear your mind and give you more energy.
More importantly, it also gives you some well needed time away from your computer screen (see point 2 above...). So, find something you enjoy, whether it's walking, running, swimming or dancing and just wait for those waves of productivity to wash over you.
7. The power of 'no'
We're all very, very busy and often have lots of different people to answer to, from multiple bosses to family, and everything always seems to be urgent making everything hugely overwhelming and scary.
This year try to harness the power of 'no'and reclaim your time. This does come with a lot of added communication, saying no left, right and centre probably won't get you very fair.
Instead, it involves managing up, being really honest and prioritising. It's saying no to that extra piece of work or giving a realistic turnaround time, or even saying no to drinks with your friends once in a while so you can have an evening in your PJs in front of Netflix.
So, here's to a happy successful year. Let us know your tips and hacks for managing your time, we'd love to hear them.