Have you resolved to make 2018 the year you do your best work? Your time starts now.

Propel your productivity to a whole new level from the moment you walk through the door on your first day back. Whether it’s taking more breaks, organising your digital life or starting every day with a plan, the smallest changes can make a huge difference to your productivity and happiness at work. And the sooner you begin, the sooner you will reap the rewards.

Here’s how to get off to your most productive start in 2018:

Set your goals for 2018

A little time away from your daily routine is a powerful way to reflect on your work life (and life in general!), so use the opportunity to set new goals for 2018. Get specific with what you want to achieve. Even set a few goals outside your comfort zone to really challenge yourself. Then, write your goals on post-it notes and stick them somewhere they can motivate you every day.

Make an action plan

Using a planner is the easiest way to stay focused on what needs to be done. If you don’t already have one, start using a week-to-view diary. Make an effort to look at your task list as soon as you arrive at work, so you have a clear vision for the day ahead. Revisit it again at the end of the day, so you can relish in putting a tick next to every completed task. Progress!

Organise your digital life

Time to get your digital life in order. Start with your inbox – categorise your emails and delete everything you don’t need. Organise your files into those you want to keep and those that can be archived. And use apps to automate and schedule those tasks for you so you can stay organised all year round.

Transform your workspace

Create a workspace you truly enjoy spending time in. Raise your organisation game using document trays and dedicated folders, labelling them clearly so finding things is a breeze. Be ruthless with your clutter and use a shredder to securely dispose of any old files and documents you no longer need. Give your desk good clean with surface wipes – in fact, keep a packet in your desk drawer from now on. Stock up on some fresh notebooks and stationery. Even add some green life – psychologists have found that plants can increase productivity by 15%. That’s got to be worth a go!

New work habits

Could taking more breaks help you get more done? Will turning off email notifications help you stay focused? Now is the ideal time to give your work habits a tune-up. Maybe it’s something as simple as drinking more water, using a height-adjustable desk or leaving your workspace every 90 minutes to recharge. Or something bigger like stopping work ten minutes early every day and dedicating that time to making your to-do list for tomorrow.

With these simple strategies, you’ll be ready to jump into 2018 and make it your most productive year yet.

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