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Boost Your Efficiency With These 9 Simple Productivity Hacks

By: Catherine Mattiske

© 2023 – GQ Global

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Being productive is essential in both your personal and professional life. Utilizing your time and energy efficiently can lead to a balanced and efficient approach to work. By implementing productivity techniques, you can enhance focus, reduce stress, boost creativity, and make better decisions. In this article, we will explore 15 productivity hacks that will streamline your work and skyrocket your efficiency.

Key Takeaways:

  • Implementing productivity hacks can improve focus, reduce stress, enhance creativity, and improve decision-making.
  • Starting your day with exercises can improve your health, enhance concentration, and reduce mental exertion.
  • Maintaining good mental health through practices like mindfulness and meditation can improve focus and overall well-being.
  • Pareto’s 80/20 rule suggests focusing on selective tasks that yield the most significant outcomes.
  • Keeping your workspace organized and free of distractions can significantly improve productivity.
  • Work in your Genius Zone for as much of your day as possible.

Productivity hack 1 – Start your day with exercises

When it comes to boosting your productivity, starting your day with physical exercises can make all the difference. Taking the time to prioritize your health in the morning sets a positive tone for the rest of the day. Engaging in physical activity not only benefits your overall well-being but also enhances your concentration and mental exertion throughout the day.

By incorporating exercises such as yoga or meditation into your morning routine, you can improve your energy levels and focus. These activities help calm the mind, reduce stress, and increase mental clarity. Physical exercises stimulate the release of endorphins, which are natural mood boosters, leaving you feeling energized and ready to tackle your tasks with efficiency.

Moreover, starting your day with exercise sets a foundation of discipline and self-care. It allows you to establish a sense of accomplishment early on, which can boost your confidence and motivation to tackle other challenges throughout the day. By prioritizing your physical health, you’re investing in your overall well-being and ensuring that you have the energy and mental capacity to tackle your responsibilities with ease.

Physical Exercises

Create a Morning Exercise Routine

To make the most out of your morning exercise routine, consider creating a structured plan that suits your preferences and lifestyle. This routine can include a variety of activities such as stretching, cardiovascular exercises, and strength training. Experiment with different exercises and find what works best for you.

“The early morning has gold in its mouth.”

As the famous German writer Johann Wolfgang von Goethe once said, “The early morning has gold in its mouth.” By starting your day with exercises, you’re tapping into the potential to achieve greatness in both your personal and professional life. So, set that alarm a little earlier, put on your favorite workout gear, and embrace the power of physical activity to boost your efficiency and productivity.

Productivity hack 2 – Don’t overlook mental health

Mental health is often overlooked when it comes to productivity, but it plays a crucial role in our ability to concentrate and perform at our best. The demands of modern life can lead to increased levels of anxiety and stress, which can negatively impact our concentration and overall productivity. It is essential to prioritize our mental well-being and implement practices that support it.

Practicing mindfulness and meditation is a powerful way to manage stress and improve concentration. Taking a few minutes each day to focus on your breath and be present in the moment can help calm the mind and reduce anxiety. Breathing exercises are also effective in promoting relaxation and reducing stress levels.

Another important aspect of mental health is taking breaks when needed. Allowing yourself time to relax and recharge can prevent burnout and improve productivity. Whether it’s taking a short walk, engaging in a hobby, or simply closing your eyes and taking a few deep breaths, giving yourself permission to rest is essential.

By prioritizing mental health and implementing practices that support it, you can enhance your concentration, reduce stress levels, and ultimately boost your productivity. Remember, taking care of your mental well-being is not a luxury but a necessity for optimal performance in all areas of your life.

Productivity hack 3 – Pareto’s 80/20 Rule: Maximizing Results with Minimal Effort

When it comes to productivity, the Pareto’s 80/20 rule is a game-changer. This principle states that roughly 80% of results come from just 20% of our efforts. In other words, by focusing on selective tasks that yield the most significant outcomes, we can achieve more without overwhelming ourselves.

By embracing Pareto’s 80/20 rule, you can tap into the power of prioritization. Start by identifying the few tasks or activities that contribute the most to your goals or desired outcomes. These are the tasks that, when completed successfully, will have the most impact on your productivity and success.

Once you’ve identified these high-impact tasks, make them a priority. Allocate a significant portion of your time and energy to completing them efficiently and effectively. Delegate or eliminate tasks that do not align with your goals or do not generate substantial results.

Applying Pareto’s 80/20 Rule in Your Work

Here is a practical example to illustrate the power of Pareto’s 80/20 rule:

Theodore spends eight hours a day on various tasks, from administrative work to client meetings. By analyzing his work patterns, he realizes that 20% of his tasks, such as preparing client presentations and closing deals, contribute to 80% of his success. Armed with this knowledge, Theodore decides to allocate a significant portion of his time to these high-impact tasks. As a result, he sees a significant increase in his productivity, client satisfaction, and overall success.

By focusing on the vital few tasks that generate the most significant results, you can optimize your productivity and achieve more with less effort. Embrace Pareto’s 80/20 rule, and unlock your true potential for success.

Pareto'S 80/20 Rule

Productivity hack 4 – Keep Your Workspace Organized for Maximum Productivity

When it comes to boosting your productivity, one of the simplest yet most effective strategies is to keep your workspace organized. A clutter-free environment can have a significant impact on your ability to concentrate and stay focused on your tasks. By removing unnecessary objects and maintaining an organized workspace, you can minimize distractions and create a conducive environment for optimal productivity.

Having a designated place for every item on your desk ensures that everything is within reach and easily accessible. This saves you valuable time that would otherwise be spent searching for misplaced items. It also helps to reduce mental clutter and allows you to maintain a clear and uncluttered mind, enhancing your ability to concentrate on the task at hand.

Decluttering your workspace not only applies to physical objects but also extends to your digital environment. Organize your computer files and folders in a logical manner, making it easier for you to locate and retrieve documents quickly. Implementing an effective file naming system and utilizing folders and subfolders can help you stay organized and efficient in your digital workspace as well.

Remember, an organized workspace is an essential element in creating a productive work environment. A clutter-free and well-organized space allows you to focus your energy on the tasks that matter most, leading to increased productivity and overall work satisfaction.

Organized Workspace

Benefits of an Organized Workspace

  • Improved focus and concentration
  • Reduced distractions
  • Increased efficiency and productivity
  • Enhanced clarity of thought
  • Less time wasted searching for misplaced items
  • Reduced stress and anxiety

Tips for Maintaining an Organized Workspace

  1. Regularly declutter your desk and remove unnecessary items.
  2. Designate a specific place for each item on your desk.
  3. Implement an effective filing system for both physical and digital documents.
  4. Keep your computer desktop clean and organized.
  5. Invest in storage solutions such as drawers, shelves, and organizers to maximize space.
  6. Set aside time each day to tidy up your workspace and maintain its cleanliness.
  7. Avoid eating at your desk to prevent food crumbs and spills from cluttering your workspace.

Incorporating these practices into your daily routine can help you maintain an organized workspace and reap the benefits of increased productivity and focus in your work.

Productivity hack 5 – Do One Thing Well Rather Than Doing Five Things Poorly

In today’s fast-paced world, it’s easy to fall into the trap of multitasking. We believe that juggling multiple tasks simultaneously will make us more productive, but in reality, it can have the opposite effect. Multitasking often leads to decreased focus and a decline in the quality of our work. Instead, it’s important to prioritize tasks and focus on doing one thing well at a time.

When you concentrate on a single task, you can give it your undivided attention. This allows you to fully immerse yourself in the task, leading to better concentration and increased productivity. By dedicating your time and energy to one task, you are more likely to produce high-quality work that meets your standards.

Furthermore, when you focus on one task at a time, you can complete it more efficiently. Constantly switching between tasks not only interrupts your flow but also increases the likelihood of making mistakes. By eliminating distractions and honing in on a single task, you can work more efficiently and effectively.

So, how can you apply this principle in your daily life? Start by identifying your most important task and committing to completing it before moving on to the next. Prioritize tasks based on their significance and allocate dedicated time slots to work on each one. By approaching your work in this way, you’ll find that you accomplish more and produce higher-quality results.


Remember, your focus and attention are valuable resources. By doing one thing well instead of spreading yourself thin across multiple tasks, you can optimize your productivity and achieve better outcomes. Embrace the power of focus and watch your work quality soar.

Productivity hack 6 – Fodder to be productive is deep work

When it comes to maximizing your productivity and making significant progress on your tasks, nothing beats the power of deep work. Deep work refers to a state of intense concentration and focus on a single task, free from distractions and interruptions. It allows you to tap into your full potential and produce high-quality work in a shorter amount of time.

One of the key factors that make deep work so effective is its ability to eliminate distractions. In our modern world filled with constant notifications, social media updates, and other distractions, it can be challenging to maintain focus. However, by intentionally creating an environment that minimizes distractions, you can enter a state of flow and achieve a level of productivity that is hard to match.

To facilitate deep work, start by identifying and removing any potential distractions from your workspace. This includes turning off notifications on your devices, closing unnecessary tabs or applications, and creating a quiet and clutter-free work area. Additionally, consider setting specific time blocks dedicated solely to deep work, where you can fully immerse yourself in your tasks without interruptions.

Deep Work

The Benefits of Deep Work

Engaging in deep work has numerous benefits for your productivity and overall well-being. When you enter a state of deep work, you can experience:

  • Enhanced focus and concentration
  • Increased creativity and problem-solving abilities
  • Improved memory retention and information processing
  • Greater job satisfaction and a sense of accomplishment

By incorporating deep work into your daily routine, you can train your brain to enter a state of heightened focus and productivity more easily. Over time, this practice can become a valuable habit that allows you to consistently make significant progress on your most important tasks.

The Key to Deep Work: Managing Your Attention

In order to fully harness the power of deep work, it’s important to manage your attention effectively. This involves being mindful of how you allocate your mental energy and ensuring that you devote your best focus to the tasks that matter most.

One effective technique for managing your attention is to prioritize your tasks based on their importance and impact. Identify the high-value activities that align with your goals and dedicate your deep work sessions to these tasks. By focusing on the most significant tasks, you can make the most of your limited time and energy.

Remember, deep work is not about working longer or harder; it’s about working smarter. By incorporating deep work into your productivity toolbox, you can unlock your full potential and achieve remarkable results in your work and personal life.

Productivity hack 7 – Avoid Distractions

When it comes to staying productive, avoiding distractions is key. In today’s digital age, notifications and gadgets can easily divert your attention and hinder your focus. It’s important to take control of your environment and minimize distractions to optimize your productivity.

One effective strategy is to turn off non-essential notifications on your devices. Constantly receiving alerts and pop-ups can disrupt your workflow and interrupt your train of thought. By silencing notifications, you can create a calmer working environment and maintain your focus on the task at hand.

Additionally, limiting your gadget usage while working can help enhance your productivity. It’s easy to get caught up in browsing social media or checking emails every few minutes. However, constantly switching between tasks can result in a loss of concentration and decreased efficiency. By consciously reducing your gadget usage and allocating dedicated work time, you can minimize distractions and increase your productivity levels.

Remember, staying focused and avoiding distractions is a skill that takes practice. By implementing these strategies, you can create a more conducive work environment and maximize your productivity.


Productivity hack 8 – Take breaks and permit yourself to relax

As you strive for productivity, it’s easy to forget the importance of rest and relaxation. However, taking regular breaks is essential to prevent productivity decline. After working for extended periods, our energy and focus start to dwindle. By allowing yourself to take breaks, you can rejuvenate your mind and maintain high productivity levels.

During these breaks, give yourself permission to unwind and relax. Engage in activities that help you recharge, such as going for a short walk, listening to music, or practicing deep breathing exercises. These moments of relaxation can clear your mind, reduce stress, and enhance your overall well-being.

However, it’s crucial to find the right balance. Taking breaks excessively or for long durations can disrupt your workflow and hinder productivity. Aim for brief, scheduled breaks throughout the day. By adhering to this practice, you can avoid burnout and cultivate a more sustainable work rhythm.

Remember, breaks are not a sign of laziness; they are an essential part of maintaining peak performance. So, permit yourself to step away from your tasks and indulge in moments of relaxation. You’ll find that these breaks not only recharge your batteries but also enhance your ability to stay focused and achieve your goals.

Productivity Hack 9 – Work in your Genius Zone as much as possible every day

People who have taken their Inner Genius Profile know exactly where their Genius Zone is.  They know the type of work that plays to their strengths and importantly know the types of tasks they should delegate to others – simply because they aim to spend as much time every day in their Genius Zone.  Your Genius Zone is the place where you do your best work and live your best life.  Being productive can be amplified if your  working environment aligns to your Genius Zone.  So spend time creating a workspace and life that fits your unique genius.  That’s productivity hack number 9 – work in your Genius Zone as much as possible every day!  Now, go out there and make it happen!

If you don’t know your Genius Zone, take the Inner Genius Profile – it may  be the most important thing you do all year! It will help

 “You discover what lights your fire, and uncover the skills that make up your unique genius.  With this knowledge in hand, you’ll be able to create an action plan for life and work that fits your Genius Zone.  You’ll also gain clarity on specific tasks to delegate – freeing up time so you can focus on what makes you most productive.” Catherine Mattiske – creator of the Genius Quotient (GQ) and the Inner Genius Profile.

When you’re working in your Genius Zone, the possibilities for creativity and productivity are endless! So take the time to get to know yourself – it will be worth it in the end.  You have greatness within you – unleash it!


For easy, manageable productivity hacks that will miraculously save you precious minutes every hour, empower you to be more productive, and keep your sanity intact? We’ve got you covered!

  • Productivity Hack 1 – Start your day with exercises
  • Productivity Hack 2 – Don’t overlook mental health
  • Productivity Hack 3 – Pareto’s 80/20 Rule: Maximizing Results with Minimal Effort
  • Productivity Hack 4 – Keep Your Workspace Organized for Maximum Productivity
  • Productivity Hack 5 – Do One Thing Well Rather Than Doing Five Things Poorly
  • Productivity Hack 6 – Fodder to be productive is deep work
  • Productivity Hack 7 – Avoid Distractions
  • Productivity Hack 8 – Take breaks and permit yourself to relax
  • Productivity Hack 9 – Work in your Genius Zone as much as possible every day

By employing these productivity hacks into your daily routine will make  it easier for you to stay focused, accomplish more in less time while avoiding burnout. With the help of The Genius Quotient, you can now maximize your productivity and become a genius! Take the Inner Genius Profile and start getting productive!


How can physical exercises improve productivity?

Physical exercises improve health, concentration, and task completion with less mental exertion.

How does mental health affect productivity?

Taking care of mental health through practices like mindfulness and meditation improves focus and overall well-being.

What is Pareto’s 80/20 rule?

Pareto’s 80/20 rule suggests that 20% of our effort produces 80% of the results. Focusing on selective tasks that yield significant outcomes increases productivity.

How does an organized workspace improve productivity?

Removing unnecessary items and keeping your desk clutter-free helps in staying focused and reduces distractions.

Why is multitasking not recommended for productivity?

Multitasking can reduce the quality of work and increase errors. Focusing on one important task at a time improves productivity.

What is deep work, and how does it improve productivity?

Deep work refers to intense focus on tasks that require concentration and creativity. Eliminating distractions and giving your full attention to the task at hand leads to significant progress.

How can avoiding distractions improve productivity?

Turning off non-essential notifications and minimizing gadget usage while working helps maintain focus and improve productivity.

Why are regular breaks essential for productivity?

Taking breaks, whether napping or going for a walk, helps refresh our minds and maintain focus, preventing productivity decline.

Catherine Mattiske Inner Genius GQ

Catherine Mattiske, best known for creating ID9 Intelligent Design and the Genius Quotient (GQ), is a leading light in the corporate learning and team-building industries. She regularly works with large and small organizations to help team members better understand one another while effectively collaborating and boosting individual and team morale and productivity in the workplace.

Contact Catherine

Go to Catherine Mattiske’s LinkedIn Profile

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