5 Easy Hacks For Your Everyday

Stories

We live in a time-based economy. It's why we get annoyed when we feel that our time is being taken away from us. Like when someone calls without texting first. Or when the Uber driver takes a little longer than usual to arrive.

We're spoiled by 2-day free shipping and Instagram likes. Our generation of #instantgratification wants things on our time. And fast. While big productivity changes are easy to spot, it's often the small things that give us time back.

Here are 5 small and simple productivity hacks you can do to get back some well earned minutes in your work day: 

 

1. Use two laptop chargers

One for your work desk. One for your home. Yes there's the cost of buying an extra laptop charger, but the savings in time and peace of mind are wonderful.

No more unplugging the charger from the wall, rolling up the tangled cord, and finding a place to put it in your bag. It's a great feeling to get to work or come back home and have a charger right there when you need it.

 

 

 

2. Make a handwritten to-do list

Google calendar and apps are nice, but good old pen and paper can be a productive way to start your day. Writing down your to-do list every day forces you to prioritize your tasks.

It also helps avoid multitasking since there's only one thing that you can work on at any given time. [1] When you complete a task, being able to cross it out or checkmark it with a pen is also pretty rewarding.

 

 

 

3. Use a bag with a separate laptop compartment

If you're a road warrior, the last thing you want is to hold up the line at TSA. Same goes for if you use your laptop a lot throughout your workday. To save the time it takes to get your tech in and out of your bag, use a work bag that has a separate laptop compartment. [2]

It might not seem like much, but the benefit of not having to unzip, dig, and move things around in your bag pays off. With the ISM backpack, a separate waterproof laptop compartment is a key feature.

The ISM Backpack with Black Accents

 

 

4. Delete or hide phone apps

The average person only uses 9 apps a day, even though we spend around 2 and a half hours on these apps. [3] If there's an app that you don't want to spend as much time on, consider deleting it.

The next best option is to move it to a page on your phone that you never go to. When it's on a page you don't swipe to, you'll have fewer reminders that its there. By not deleting it, you also give yourself the option to use it later.

 

 

5. Have a dedicated spot for items

If you're running late in the morning, the worst thing is having to spend time finding your keys or wallet. Having a dedicated spot near your door for small everyday items is an easy routine booster.

The same goes for items on your work desk or in your bag. A pocket in your backpack that is only for certain items also makes it easier to find things when you need them. [4]

 

The ISM Backpack

 

 

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References

[1] I'll keep my daily to do lists to under 10 items. I never finish every single task and I actually like that since it means that I focused on what was important. This concept is also covered pretty well by Sam Altman's post on productivity.

[2] When designing the ISM laptop compartment, we made sure to include only what is necessary. A lot of laptop compartments have a buckle or piece of material with a button that is used to 'secure' the laptop. Through user testing, we found that no one actually buckles or buttons it. It also doesn't really help secure the laptop since it is zipped up.

[3] According to App Annie's data on consumer behavior.

[4] It's also good not to have too many pockets in a bag since it can lead you to finding things to put in them for the sake of it. Constraints are good.

 

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