You can get more done in an hour in the morning than in that same amount of time in the afternoon—or the middle of the night. So why not prioritize your must-do tasks to the times of day when you’re most productive?
What happens if you work on a project at 9:00 am, rather than at 4:00 pm or even 9:00 pm? Odds are, you'll finish it faster in the morning when your energy level is peaking—and you’re more likely to get it done. Why? Time is not equal.
"Tackle high-priority and difficult tasks early in the day."
Instead of managing just your time—as in, blocking off each task on your calendar every day—don't forget to manage your energy, too. It's a concept that's stressed in the popular self-help book The Power of Full Engagement by Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz. This tweak may be the key to being more productive.
Tackle high-priority and difficult tasks early in the day. The morning is a great time to do your hardest task—the one that requires the most thought, which is probably the one that you've been dreading and perhaps even putting off. Get it over with. Don't waste a minute of your most valuable block of time chatting by the office coffee machine.
Do low-priority and mindless tasks later in the day. Say you have to write emails, schedule meetings, or process contracts or invoices—these jobs may not require as much mental focus as interviewing a new hire or preparing your company's quarterly goals. Why not schedule them for the late afternoon, when your energy may be dipping and you're staring at the clock?
Boost your stamina. Some common ways that you might be saving time (like skipping breakfast or that early-morning walk) may be sapping your endurance. Don't skimp on self-care. This includes starting your day with a healthy breakfast and a glass of water; infuse yours with Emergen-C Energy+, which has natural caffeine from green tea to focus your mind and vitamin C to refresh your body. Also, schedule a five-minute break every 90 minutes so you can stretch, look out the window, and do some deep breathing. Then, every night, go to bed at the same time so you get consistent sleep.