Bad Office Habits That Can Affect Your Productivity Levels And How To Avoid Them

April 12, 2020

Confident young designer working with drawing tablet at home office
Emmanuel Feranmi

If you're working, you want to make sure that you stay productive. However, there are a lot of bad habits that can make that a pipe dream. Thankfully, it's easy to identify these habits and do something about them.

So what are these bad habits and what can you do to stop them?

Drifting Into Dreamland

At work, it's easy to start looking at the bigger picture, whatever that is. It's easy to get lost in thought if you're performing some mindless task. Unfortunately, that will almost certainly let you make mistakes. And if you make mistakes, you'll have to correct them, thereby losing time and reducing your level of productivity.

To solve this problem, you only need to become more self-aware. You should think less of the  bigger picture and think more about what you're doing. Focusing on this will make you accomplish your tasks easier and faster.

Meetings

Meetings are great. If you don't work a lot, meetings may make you think that you're getting a lot done. But you aren't. You're just meeting colleagues and going over things that have been gone over a thousand times. In fact, if you attend a lot of meetings, you're likely to be unproductive. If you spend a lot of time on unnecessary meetings, you will be wasting time that would have been spent on a more productive venture.

It's easy to kick this habit. How? Before attending any meeting, or before calling for any meeting, make sure that there's a clear agenda. Importantly, even after seeing an agenda or setting an agenda, make sure that you only attend meetings that are worth your time. If they aren't, do not hesitate to skip them.

Sleeping

A short nap may be attractive, but let's call it what it is; wasted time. Now, one short nap may be forgiven, but if you're taking three, four short naps over the course of the day, that's a problem that needs immediate solving.

It even gets worse when you take a nap with your phone/laptop in and close to you. Research has shown that laptop screens and phones emit blue light which lowers the level of melatonin in the body. You should probably know that people with lower melatonin levels are more prone to depression.

If you're really tired and mentally fatigued, try to get some rest. When doing that, you should try to put your phone and laptop off. If you feel the need to sleep often, then you may have to get a standing desk. It's harder for you to sleep while standing upright, and a standing desk may be just what the doctor ordered. A desk like the Electric Height Adjustable Desk EN1 will reduce instances of you napping at work, and will definitely help you be more productive.

Indecisiveness

A lot of us waste our time going through tons of information without deciding which is important and which is not. This takes a lot of time and can lead to a lot of wasted hours.

To solve this, make use of the two minutes rule. Whenever you have to make a decision, allow yourself only two minutes to think about it. This will dramatically cut the time you use to decide and will free up time for other useful activities.

Drifting Into Browsing

Even the best of us often fall into the trap of picking up our phones and checking what's new with Karen on Facebook. From checking the replies to a funny meme to taking a test that would tell you what Money Heist character you are, we all drift. Unfortunately, drifting takes time, and that reduces productivity.

How do you deal with this? Prioritize. Make a list of things you'd like to check on the internet and stick to the list. It'll stop you from going down BuzzFeed rabbit holes every thirty minutes. 

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