When you have a number of things on your plate it can seem like you’ll never have enough time to finish them all. We always think there aren’t enough hours in the day or days in the week, but regardless it’s all the time we have. We can’t add more minutes to the hour so we have to make the most of our time.

Increasing your productivity can help you minimize stress and avoid feeling overwhelmed and burnt out. Not to mention, completing necessary tasks on a daily basis can give you a continuous sense of achievement and fulfillment.

Here are 5 effective ways to increase your productivity.

1. Plan Ahead – Create a prioritized to-do list of things you want to accomplish. When you have a list you spend less time figuring out what to do next. Start the list as soon as you can, don’t let it sit there because it’ll just lead to more to do at a later date. If the same task keeps getting up off, look into outsourcing it (ex. Having someone cut your lawn).

Every item on the list doesn’t have to have a specific due date, just focus on the important things and cross them off as they’re completed.

2. Don’t Multitask – Everyone thinks of multitasking as the best thing. You can do two things at once but usually not efficiently and in a timely manner. After multitasking, reflect on what you’ve done, what was completed. You were busy all day but what do you have to show for it? Perhaps a little farther in progress on each task, you could’ve completed one if you focused on a single item.

There’s a difference between being busy and productive. Busy is having a lot to do and never seeming to finish. Being productive is efficiently using your time to complete tasks. Trust me you’ll know the feeling, busy feels like mounting stress whereas being productive feels like triumph.

3. Avoid or Minimize Distractions – Things like chatting with people, emailing and surfing the internet can we quite distracting and interrupt your progress. Now that doesn’t mean you cannot socialize or take a break. However if you ever look at your workload and wonder where your day went, it’s time to tighten the reins. Put those things off until the end of the day, when you’ve completed something.

Sometimes I feel like I have million things running through my mind, which can also be distracting when you’re trying to concentrate. To get back on track, I write it down or add it to my list so that I don’t forget it and focus on it at another time.

Fewer distractions make it easier to stay on point and follow through. You’ll amaze yourself by how much you can finish in a short time without interruptions.

4. Mobilize – Being flexible with your tasks can help too. If you can do something while on the run, do it. Read that article or report while waiting in the doctor’s office, instead of the old magazines. Having a laptop, tablet pc or Smartphone can facilitate becoming mobile. This can even save you some time in the end.

5. Be an Early Bird – Many of us may not want to do this but when you still don’t have quite enough time, you need to become an early riser. This doesn’t mean reducing your beauty rest you still need that especially if you have much to do. Don’t lie around in the bed aimlessly or sleep extensively. This kills your time and is counter-productive. Get up earlier and start earlier.

Tracking how your time is spent can also help you understand and better utilize your time. After a while you’ll be able to see exactly what’s happening and make the necessary adjustments. Leading Edge Advocate has the resources to assist you in doing this.

These tips will help you make the most of your time. Once you apply them you’ll notice things moving along and completed.

Author's Bio: 

Lea Bullen is a personal development and conscious living advocate who started the Leading Edge Advocate, a self improvement community and resource center to help others enhance their well being and live the life they desire. Change your life, become a member of the Leading Edge today, http://www.leadingedgeadvocate.com and receive our Personal Development Report: Que sera, sera, Whatever will be, will be… if you allow it.