The Not To-Do List: 5 Things You Need To Stop Doing In Order To Become More Productive

We all know the tips and tricks to do in order to become more productive. Unfortunately, no one ever tells us what not to do if you want to be more productive. We often mistake ‘being busy’ for ‘being productive’ and of course you can be both, but being busy does not necessarily mean that you are productive as well.

Picture: VUOU

I am guilty of doing quite a lot of things that stand in the way of my productivity. If you are aware of what not to do, you will automatically focus more on what needs to be done.

Here are 5 things I try to stop doing in order to become more productive and hopefully this will be helpful for you as well :) .

#1 – Working long hours 

Working long hours does not mean you get more work done. You need to make sure that you work effectively in the hours you work. We can only work effectively for certain hours, so having a 16 hours work day doesn’t mean your get more work done than in a 8 hours work day. Focus on working effectively in the hours that you work and not on working a lot of hours in order to get things done.

#2 – Saying ‘yes’ to everyone

This one is probably the most difficult one for me. Saying ‘yes’ to everyone is also what will kill your productivity. It is always better to do a few tasks very well than taking up a lot of tasks and not being able to deliver in the end. With fewer tasks, you will be able to focus fully on these tasks while you are working and keep everything organized.

#3 – Being a perfectionist

Being hung up on details will consume your precious time. Instead of focussing on the small things during your work, leave them till the end. If you have some time left at the end of your day, you can always go back and finish off these details.

#4 – Not taking breaks

Guilty! Not taking breaks is what will kill your productivity. We can only focus and concentrate for a certain time and after that you will become less productive. So schedule in breaks or me-time, put your work away, relax, eat or go for a walk. We need breaks during our work in order to stay productive.

#5 – Trying to do everything by yourself

It is okay to ask for help if you need it. Most people have a problem with this one and don’t want to ask others to help them. Some see it as weakness and others just don’t want to bother other people. But everyone can use a little help from time to time, and there is nothing wrong with that.

Do you have any other things that we need to stop doing in order to become more productive? Share it with us and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and Bloglovin!

Credit: Lifehack & Medium

PHOTO’S: Getty

  • Natasha Aldred

    I’m a sucker for doing all of these.
    Awesome posts! Can’t stop reading them.

  • Amy Kubala

    Love this list! I just read another article about “Why managing your energy is the key to maximum productivity”

  • Amy

    Love this list! Just read another interesting article about energy management and productivity –>

  • Amy van Middendorp

    I am like seriously doing all of these.. so wrong but it’s the truth.. Nice post!

  • Angelica

    Guilty of all of these, sadly.

  • Jaqueline Ribeiro

    I work long hours and need to stop this. Loved the post.

  • Lauren

    I totally agree, I need to stop stressing! Saying no is okay, as is taking some time for yourself!

    Lauren x
    Britton Loves | Lifestyle Food Fashion Beauty –

  • Jessica

    #2 is a tough one but sooo important. I had to learn the hard way not to do this, but now I’m quick to say no to something the moment it feels like my plate is getting too full.

    Great post!

  • http://LizzieDripping Elizabeth Rebecca

    I think another time sapper is e-mail and social media.

    Lizzie Dripping

  • Holly

    Great ideas – when I first saw this I thought it would say something like “stop watching lots of tv”…etc so am glad it’s things i’ll actually be able to apply ;)

  • Meghan | Simple Life Soliloquies

    Yep, I do almost all of these. Moment of truth!

  • Amanda

    Such a great list. I’m definitely a “yes” person and making an effort to say no to things at work when I need to has made such a difference in my productivity and stress levels.

    #5 is next on my list!

  • Sarah Best

    Awesome post but guilty as charged unfortunately! I totally agree that we usually associate long hours with productivity.

  • Alisha

    I can relate to all of these. Taking breaks and having so time to relax is so important and we often forget that.

  • Rebekah Koontz

    I constantly associate working long hours with being productive. Then I look back on my day and feel like I’ve gotten nothing done. Rightly so. Because I haven’t. I’ve just toyed with the computer for four hours.

    Ugh, I’m convicted.

  • Sarah Elizabeth

    Aaaaah! All of these things! Yes, just yes! I agree completely. And I am guilty of most, if not all, of these things. Thanks for pointing the finger at me! :P Just kidding. But seriously, appreciating the inspiration! x

  • Lil Ashton

    I’m absolutely the opposite of a perfectionist and I think that’s absolutely key to my productivity!

  • Cheryl

    These are all so true! Its Ironic, but I feel guilty if I ‘take a break’, or dare I say ‘leave work before the members of my team who report to me’ – #need to learn to let go!haha

  • Rebecca Ellis

    My boyfriend gets frustrated with me because I like everything to be perfect, for instance I won’t hand in coursework unless it’s to my own standards haha… It’s ridiculous and apparently I’ve always been this way. My parents claim as a child, I played with my toys and put them away straight after, whereas my sister and brother left everything behind them haha x

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  • Gracious Store

    The greatest thing in the not to do list “”Is not to do everything by yourself. Always be welcoming to helping hands it pays all rounds

  • janet fazio

    #2 and #5 are my pitfalls. Must work on these.

  • Helena

    Definitely guilty of doing all of these. But awesome post! This motivated me to become more productive and stop these things.

    Helena ♥

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