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The Ground Rules for Being Efficient

Being efficient is an essential characteristic that everyone must possess. Here are 5 rules to observe if you want to make the best out of life.

The Ground Rules for Being Efficient

 1. Prevent Multitasking

The sad truth is that multitasking gives people the illusion that they are doing more or accomplishing a lot at once. However, what people do not know is that it has the exact opposite.

In fact, it is something that has been proven. It has been proven that trying to accomplish multiple tasks at once affects a person’s productivity, and the shift to multitasking may affect a person’s time up to 40%.

That is because a person’s concentration and focus constantly shift between tasks.

The best way to handle different tasks or a lot of tasks is doing one by one. As such, the first step to take is determining priorities and tackling or allocating enough time for each task.

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In other words, work on the task that is urgent first and then create enough time to complete the rest.

2. Turn Off Your Smartphone Notifications

More than 50% of Americans with smartphones have admitted to checking their phones several times an hour. This is according to research conducted by the Gallup Poll.

For you to boost efficiency, consider switching off your phone or muting the notifications while working.

This tip also applies to your computer or any other digital device that gives you the privilege of accessing social media. If this is not possible, consider logging out from all your social media accounts.

Doing this will sway you from checking your phone constantly because the pages are not accessible.

3. Interruption Management

The truth is that there are many forms of interruptions in an office that are unavoidable, like being requested for a quick meeting, colleagues asking for assistance, and more.

The best way to avoid or manage interruptions is to learn how to handle them like a pro.

Aside from being proactive, inform your colleagues of your need to focus. On your work chat app, consider updating your status to busy or unavailable.  If you are on a deadline, let your colleagues know about that and how you would appreciate not being interrupted.

4. Prioritization

“If your job is to eat frogs, it is wise to do it first thing in the morning. If your job is to eat two frogs, it is wise to eat the biggest one first,” said Mark Twain.

What did he mean by saying this? He meant that you should consider doing your job/tasks the first thing in the morning. Also, if you have several tasks to complete, you should tackle the most urgent one and get it out of the way.

Eating the frog is a productivity technique that encourages someone to do what is right.  It also refers to the most undesirable tasks first. If you do not love a specific task (many of us have that one task that we do not love handling), you should consider starting your day with that.

5. Reduce Meetings

Meetings demand time. This is time that can be used to do something else useful. In a meeting; first, you have to wait for people to arrive, then you get to pleasantries before starting the meeting officially.

Furthermore, it can take a whole hour to iron a single issue.

The solution is minimizing meetings, and you will be surprised by how much you can accomplish through emails and phone calls.  However, this does not mean that you ignore meetings altogether.

Of course, some circumstances demand face-to-face discussions and negotiations. All you have to do is weigh up your priorities.


However, never plan a meeting just for information sharing. If you have never noticed, doing this wastes precious time that can be allocated to do other things.

You are better off sending an email or call. Meetings require brainstorming and in-depth discussions.


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