1. Take that to-do list, and cut it in half. (At least.)
Super-productive people don't have to-do lists that are three pages long.
"Truly productive people aren't focused on doing more things; this is actually the opposite of productivity," Pozin writes. "If you really want to be productive, you’ve got to make a point to do fewer things."
2. Focus on yourself, especially in the beginning of the day.
What's the first thing you did this morning? If you're like most of us, it was check your email. Pozin and Wong suggest making your first activity of the day about you. Read the paper. Go for a walk. Try meditation. Whatever you do, make sure it's about you and your priorities, not everyone else's.
3. Pick up the phone.
We sometimes treat the phone as if it were an archaic technology like the telegram or the Pony Express, but the fact is that it can save a lot of time, especially when you find yourself embroiled in the middle of one of those endless email chains. Remember that sometimes the only way to get an answer is to talk to someone, if not face to face, than at least voice to voice.
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