The common saying “work smarter, not harder” originated in the 1930s. Allen F. Morgenstern, an industrial engineer and the creator of the work simplification program, coined the term. The program’s intent was to increase the ability of people to produce more with less effort.
We all want to be productive and get things done more quickly and effectively. No one likes to be stressed and overworked. In order to do that, working smarter is a much better strategy than working harder.
What does that mean?
It means that you’re in control of your own time, when you strategize and plan your priorities. How time is managed will be different for everyone, but there are some practical tips which everyone can apply, to produce more with less effort.
Plan and prioritize your most important tasks, based on your energy level - likely first thing in the morning, if you’re a morning person or late afternoon, if you’re a night owl.
Work in shorter blocks - 90-120 minutes at a time.Track your time using a time tracking tool or app. (I use Clockify, and it’s free!)
Delegate more tasks. You should be focusing on high impact activities. When the small tasks are becoming more challenging to complete, ask for help.
Stop multitasking. Focus on one task to completion at a time.
Take a break. Listen to your body. Step away when your brain is tired. Turn off your cell phone and relax. You’re not saving lives…everyone will be okay waiting for an hour, while you take care of yourself.
Stop striving for perfection. You don’t need to sacrifice your high standards, but completing the project has to be done. Don’t be so hard on yourself, if the client likes what you’re producing.
Being more intentional with your time will increase your productivity and increase your effectiveness. Working smarter, not harder allows you to focus on the important tasks, increases motivation, and gets you closer to your goals.
When you’re ready to delegate and/or discuss how to work smarter, let’s schedule a 30 minute chat.
“It’s not a daily increase, but a daily decrease. Hack away at the inessentials.” - Bruce Lee