As another year comes to a close I can say that this was one for the ages. With all my travel and new experiences I can honestly say that if I had more of that for 2015 I wouldn’t complain in the least.

TheCameraGirls via Compfight

Still, I can look at 2014 and realize that I could have done more, and if I could have done more I can share how you can do more in 2015 as well. After all, I don’t write these blog posts only for myself. 🙂

This is the next to the last post of 2014, and since I’m using my last post of the year to highlight some of my favorite posts of the year, I figured this one should at least attempt to be helpful. So, without further ado, 5 ways to make 2015 more productive for all of us.

1. 3×5 Index Cards.

Yes, you read that right, an old standard. This is an idea that comes from Brendan Burchard and his new book “The Motivation Manifesto.” He states that we all get ideas during the day, as well as think of something we want or need to do, and that as we get older we just don’t retain things as well as we did when we were younger.

His suggestion was to buy 3×5 index cards and carry them around with you to jot notes down. I’ve gone two steps further by buying a spiral bound 3×5 index card holder and buying one with multiple colors because… okay, I just like the colors. lol Technology is a wonderful thing but for quick simple things it might take too long to access.

2. Set aside one hour a day to work on something specifically for you.

Once again this isn’t my original idea. It comes from an ebook I purchased from a lady named Marelisa Fabrega, whom I interviewed years ago, titled The One Hour A Day Formula (that’s not an affiliate link so click on it & check it out). She talks about a lot of famous or rich people who worked on their craft or dreams by finding one hour a day to dedicate specifically to that and using the rest of their hours as they needed to. When all is said and done, if you can figure out how to find the time you create the equivalent of 9 weeks of working hours; imagine what you can accomplish!

3. Evernote and Dropbox.

Let’s talk about technology for a quick minute. It certainly has its place, and both of these programs can help you be more productive in many ways. Evernote lets you take notes, make lists, save certain types of files for quick access, create diaries, create shared folders of notes with others, etc. Dropbox lets you save and share files, but much bigger files with bigger capacity.

The beauty of both is that you can access them from anywhere and anything as long as you have an internet connection or some type of data connection. Thus, if you create your shopping list on Evernote, you never have to worry about leaving it at home if you have at least a smartphone. And if you have to give a presentation you can save your file to Dropbox and can open it using someone else’s computer or laptop or even a tablet if you forget to take it any other way. Both are free for limited capacity, which is enough for most people, but it’s not all that costly if you need to expand.

4. Planners.

Many people have either Google Calendar or Outlook for planning things. I don’t use either, though I do have a scheduler on my main computer. What I have instead is a Franklin Planner, old school “tech” that allows me to write lots of stuff down, decide what’s most important, and move on from there.

The thing is that studies have proven that writing things down helps us be more productive and actually helps put our minds at ease because we don’t have to remember everything. Also, I’ve found that adding motivational messages here and there, carrying long term projects from week to week or month to month all helps me stay truly focused, which of course means better productivity.

5. Thinking time.

I have to admit I’m bad at this when it comes to taking care of my own business and personal needs, but great at it when I’m working on projects for clients. We all need time to just sit and think because it helps us not only come up with solutions and processes but helps us put them in perspective and order so we’re not just jumping into things all willy-nilly (Who came up with that phrase anyway? Maybe this?) without direction, thus wasting time. Some of #2 can be devoted to this, but only the set up process; at least that’s how I see it.

There you go, some specific ways to help us all be more productive in 2015!

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