I was listening to Adam Grant’s podcast this morning. He was interviewing the author John Green on the launch of his new book. John mentioned, ‘pay attention to your attention.’ A surprisingly simple but effective strategy of finding out what makes you tick. As I thought about the concept more, I realized one of the things I love to do, is self-improvement.
It is because I am interested in self-improvement, that I even came up with this website, and began to blog regularly. Self-improvement directly leads to increased productivity. So, this post talks about 3 secrets to increasing productivity!
‘How do you do everything that you do?’, I have heard the question being asked to a few of my role models over the years. Particularly, women with children who are managing successful businesses. Here are a few well-kept secrets to their productivity.
Taking time off
Taking time off does not only mean vacationing, although it absolutely does include it. In the last 7 months alone, I took 6 mini-holidays. Some of them included flying to another city, one of them included flying to another country, but most included driving a few hours and spending down time with my husband and/or friends, with no dentistry or tech work on my mind.
Taking time off, within reasonable affordability, can be a blessing. It gives you time to step back and recognize what you miss in your work life. It helps you re prioritize. It also helps you de stress and work out conflicts.
Vacations are also a time for us to re-organize our thinking, feel revived and come back with a fresh perspective. For example, I realized I needed to quit working at Pacific as their weekly Faculty so I could focus more on my work at Samsotech. I also recognized that we need to find another Board member at the New Dentist Business Club, who could take up my responsibilities over the next year. Without taking a holiday, I probably wouldn’t have had the time to consider these issues properly.
Having a crew
Finding a core group of men and women who you can learn from is the most important thing you can do for your career advancement. There are several such mastermind groups, depending on your location. In the Bay Area for example, we are blessed with several women led incubator groups that organize monthly meetups and online meetings.
I have been fortunate to be part of a wonderful group run by Dr. Shivani Kamodia, over the past 2 years. I credit publishing my book and launching my speaking career to being part of the ‘Creative Collective’. What’s more is that the group has created opportunities to interact and collaborate with other members, all superstars in their own way, that have resulted in lifelong friendships. Having a supportive professional circle like this can be a huge boost to your productivity.
When you learn new tools and techniques, you typically can’t wait to put them into action. Investing in education, be it a professional course, a book club, coaching or listening to a Ted Talk can be invigorating. My coach suggested listening to one Ted Talk everyday (18 mins) and writing about its key take-away’s on Twitter. Using this strategy, I am able to learn different presentation/speaking styles, thereby improving my own delivery over time.
Finding a way to learn new things and add skills to your toolbox is an effective negotiation strategy as well. It helps your employer know that you are consistently investing in bettering yourself and increases your value to the company.
Can you think of more ways to improve productivity? Reply below to let me know! Wish you Happy Holidays!