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productivity hacks #1-3: one week later

One week later, here’s how I did!

Check email standing up
3/5 – broke this in the morning by paranoidly checking if I had gotten sub coverage for dealing with a broken heating water pump. When I got to school, I did all email standing up at the laptop cart.
3/6 – did it! it’s making me so aware of how much time i’m spending on email.
3/7 – accidentally wrote some sitting emails in the morning, and in the evening at my kitchen counter.
3/8 – slipped a few times for work, but ended up not checking personal email for most of the day
3/9 – cheated a LOT this afternoon.
3/10 – it worked when I had the laptop at the kitchen counter, but I moved it to the dining room table and ended up sitting.
3/11 – cheated some during the day.

Bookends
Morning: Pure Barre or Yogaglo, Bellocq Breakfast tea, breakfast
Evening: pack lunch, set up teakettle & tea, lay out outfit, pack work bag, write in journal, drink tea and read.
3/5 – could not wake myself up to do Yogaglo. Tea and breakfast were good (but started late because waiting for plumber).
3/6 – went to Pure Barre and did breakfast routine. drank an iced venti redeye after. Did crosswords with New York Times app.
3/7 – went to Pure Barre. Thought I’d be really sore. Was good but I was so tired later. My evening routine is not going so well…I am hesitant to read Broken Harbor (creepy thriller) right before bed.
3/8 – let myself sleep in (planned yesterday). needed it, though i accidentally left on my Pure Barre alarm.
3/9 – did Pure Barre in the morning, did crosswords at night.
3/10 – could not wake up to run before brunch. Also sat while emailing a lot (I moved the computer to the dining room table vs. the kitchen counter.
3/11 – did Pure Barre in the morning, did crosswords at night. Also ran in the evening, so I was more tired than usual.
3/12 – ended up sleeping in instead of doing Yogaglo.

Smarter To-Do List
Write out to-do list at beginning of day. Prioritize it in order of importance (and then what needs to be done consecutively) and work on it in that order.
3/5 – didn’t do at start of the day and regretted it. I started doing it at 11:00 a.m. but was still answering emails instead of immediately working on the tasks.
3/6 – did on a notecard and did 2/3 because I let in some cherry-picking tasks.
3/7 – need to make sure to do this as soon as I sit down…I let the day get away from me. Also not in Evernote but in my Google Calendar as starred tasks.
3/8 – did it at the end of the day (3 MITs). didn’t update my list or use it in the day because of snow day.
3/9 – did it at the beginning of the day but couldn’t get focused after helping a friend develop a blog tagline. That was some cherrypicking of tasks.
3/10 – did it at the beginning of the day on a notecard…but didn’t get one accomplished (IB Coordinator workday task list).
3/11 – Tried to do it the day before my IB Coordinator off-site workday…got overwhelmed by the sheer amount of stuff that I put on the list and didn’t prioritize.
3/12 – Wished that I had prioritized…would have felt more confident and productive.

Takeaways
I wish I had tried to change one thing at a time versus going for all three productivity hacks in the past week. I am very happy with my newly developed morning workout habit. I never would have guessed that I’d be walking to the T at 5:00 a.m., excited to feel the burn at Pure Barre. I could view my sleeping in on alternate days as a failure, but I won’t. I now realize that I’ll need to stay consistent with alternating days before trying to move to an every-day routine, and to sharpen my evening routine with an earlier bedtime and weaning off the crossword app back onto fiction books.

I’m going to aim for the 3 MITs habit again. I think it will add focus and cut scope creep in my day. I’m still trying to let go of the idea that I have to be constantly working on evenings and weekends, and to trust that I can teach a class without spending hours on the lesson. I’ll use the Google Tasks and put “*1), *2), and *3)” in front of the task names for the MITs and then number the rest.

I am going to try the email-with-timer. I think the email standing up made me aware of the time I was spending on email, but my view of “standing desk = good” probably kept me emailing longer than I should have.

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