Different people are naturally at their best at different times of the day. Some professionals consider themselves morning people, with exceptional amounts of energy and focus in the earlier hours. Others may feel like night owls, producing their best work as the day transitions into the night and beyond.
Many people fall somewhere in the middle, thriving in the late morning and into the afternoon. Plus, nearly everyone experiences peaks and valleys, even when they are in their most productive periods.
However, most professionals are only vaguely aware of the hours that work best for them. As a result, they aren’t able to optimize their schedules to take advantage or their highs or cut themselves some slack during their lulls.
By learning about your personal rhythm, you can maximize productivity. If you want to figure out when you’re at your best, here’s what you need to know.
Learn Your (Ultradian) Rhythm
While most people are at least a little familiar with circadian rhythms, the 24-hour rest/wake cycle, not as many know about ultradian rhythms. Ultradian rhythms are based on 90- to 120-minute cycles, where performance ramps up for a period and scales down for a period of equal length. At the top of the cycle, a person is at their most productive. At the bottom, resting or reducing stress, including mentally, might be a necessity.
By learning to understand your peaks and valleys, you can determine your overall rhythm. This will allow you to figure out when you should take on certain tasks, ensuring you can maximize overall productivity.
Adjust Your Tasks to Match
Most professionals may not be able to choose what they need to accomplish during a day or week, but they may have some control over when they handle them. For example, you may be able to decide whether you want to write a report in the morning or afternoon, as long as it’s done by the end of the day.
If you want to maximize productivity, take a moment in the morning (or at the end of your workday, if you’d prefer to plan ahead) and write a list of all of the tasks you need to handle. Next, determine which ones are high-demand and which ones are low-demand, from a mental perspective.
Then, align your high-demand activities with your peak performance periods. If you know your ultradian rhythms, you should be able to match them up with relative ease.
With that approach, you’ll take on duties that require more effort during times when you’re best equipped to handle them. During your lower energy or focus periods, you can work on low-demand work, allowing you to remain productive but not over-taxed.
We Can Help Your Improve Your Productivity
Ultimately, by learning your ultradian rhythms and adjusting as much of your schedule as possible, you can make sure your productivity remains high while increasing your work quality. If you’d like to learn more about maximizing productivity, the team at Bayside Solutions can help. Contact us today.