Time Is Money: Learn How To Be More Efficient

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If procrastination is your middle name, you know what it's like to coast through the day without accomplishing, well, much of anything. Even when you try to be productive, it's easy to put off important tasks and give in to distractions—especially when it comes to seemingly unpleasant tasks, such as a looming work deadline, a home repair, or even the laundry. When the motivation you need just won't manifest, try these tips to help you get going and manage your time much more efficiently.

Plan And Prioritize
You don't have to turn yourself into a type-A control freak, but it's immensely helpful to figure out what you need to accomplish and put it on paper. Start by making a detailed to-do list, and organize from most to least important.

Tackle Your Most Difficult Tasks First
Mark Twain once said, "Eat a live frog first thing in the morning, and nothing worse will happen to you for the rest of the day." Let your most tedious, difficult or stressful task be the frog—and the rest of your to-do list will be a cinch once that weight is lifted.

Avoid Distractions
Now that you've established your most important task, get to work! Set up (and stick to) work intervals; i.e., you'll push through for 50 minutes straight and then break for 10. During your productive 50 minutes, silence your phone, turn off your TV, close out your e-mail... You get the drift—ixnay anything that is bound to distract you.

Reward Yourself
Once you've completed your tasks (or a certain number of work intervals), make sure to treat yourself. Have a meal, go for a walk, listen to music—it will make you feel even better about what you've accomplished and the relaxation will prepare you for what's next on your to-do list.