By: Julie-Anne Mendoza
1. Stop Multitasking.
You may think that you’re being efficient by doing multiple things at once, but multitasking is more likely to lower your productivity than raise it. Our brains aren’t actually capable of focusing on more than one individual task at a time, so when we think we’re multitasking, we’re actually just quickly switching between activities as opposed to doing many at the same time. And for those of you who think you’re great multitaskers: a study at Stanford found that those who multitasked a lot we’re worse at filtering information and switching between activities than those who rarely multitasked. In short: multitasking will actually make you worse at multitasking.
2. Don’t use electronics immediately before going to bed.
Melatonin is the hormone that makes you feel tired at night, and it’s released when your brain registers lower levels of light (i.e. when it’s dark out). Your laptop, phone, and tablets emit high-intensity LED light that suppresses melatonin production, and will make it tougher for you to fall asleep. Going tech-free for the hour before bed might be tough, but it’ll trick your body into helping you fall asleep faster.
I know you’ve heard this one. I know you’re tired of hearing it. There’s a good reason exercise is in every magazine’s list of life-tips: it works. Exercising releases endorphins, which have a very similar effect to opiates. Fun fact: these are the same hormones your body releases during orgasm.
4. Stop sleeping in on the weekends.
This is a tough one to swallow, I know, but sleeping in on the weekend will not help you make up any sleep debt you’ve accumulated over the week. By changing your sleeping patterns and throwing off your body clock, you’ll just make it harder to wake up on Monday morning.
5. Google it.
I know it seems obvious, but people just don’t do this. You would be surprised at how many problems Google can solve for you. Having a hard time with integral calculus? Google it. Need to get a stain out of your favorite shirt? Google it. Don’t know how to fix your stove? Google it (and call your landlord). By looking up the right solution, you can avoid time wasted trying out all the wrong ones. You might have 99 problems, but don’t let a lack of information be one.
Check out @OMGLifeHacks on twitter for more tips on reprogramming your productivity.