Being consistently productive means forming habits you use every single day – because it’s those habits that will lead to long-term success.
According to author and entrepreneur Sean Covey, habits are the building blocks of productivity. He writes, “Depending on what they are, our habits will either make us or break us. We become what we repeatedly do”.
In this post, I’m going to share 7 productive habits of successful business owners. We all have 24 hours in the day…so let’s make the most of them!
7 Productive Habits of Successful Business Owners
1. Have a Predictable Morning Routine
A predictable morning routine ensures you start each day with confidence…rather than feeling chaotic, rushed, and overwhelmed.
Make sure you give yourself time to do something you enjoy before you jump into work: this could include having a quiet breakfast with your family, going to the gym, or simply sitting for 20 minutes with a cup of coffee.
Then, once you’re done your routine, you’ll feel prepared to jump right into your work…rather than dilly-dallying around trying to wake up and get motivated!
2. Get to Bed Early(ish)
It’s the rare few of us that can consistently function well on little sleep. According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, adults need at least 7 hours of sleep each night in order to function properly.
And research done by HULT Business School found that the average working professional gets around 30 minutes less than this each night.
If you want to be productive each and every day, make sure you pay attention to your sleeping patterns. Get to bed early, keep work out of the bedroom, and have a relaxing bedtime routine you follow every night before bed.
3. Write a 3-item To-Do List each Night
This is a great habit to get into, especially if you’re not a morning person.
Before you go to bed, write down 3 things you want to get done first thing in the morning.
This is a trick I learned from Kevin O’Leary, entrepreneur and TV personality. He writes: “Before I go to sleep, I write down three things that I have to get done the next morning before I take a call, write a text or an email or talk to anyone else except my family. And they can be random things, like ‘call your daughter at school and ask about whether she’s done this or that' or ‘close a deal.' What I found was once you get those three things done, the rest of your day becomes amazingly productive.”
4. Approach Social Media with a Plan
As I’m sure you know, social media can be a huge source of wasted time if you aren’t careful.
I recommend having a plan for how you’re going to use social media on any given day. For instance, instead of simply browsing your Facebook feed and getting sucked into your aunt’s political rants, head straight to your business page with a plan for what you want to get done.
I also recommend setting a timer when you’re on social media or using a program like FocusMe to make sure you stick to your allotted social media time.
5. Build Exercise into Your Daily Routine
Think paying attention to your physical health is unrelated to your productivity?
According to Robert C. Pozen, Senior Lecturer at MIT, having an exercise routine can result in greater energy, happiness, and productivity at work.
He also notes that physically exerting yourself leads to increased mental output…and isn’t this something we could all use during a busy workday?
6. Take Some Time to Breathe
Make a habit of stopping a couple of times a day, even for 5 minutes…just to breathe deeply and briefly escape from the craziness of your day!
One experiment showed that workers who took time to meditate while working:
- Exhibited lower levels of stress
- Were better able to concentrate
- Didn’t switch tasks as often
- Were less distracted
7. Read Daily
You may have heard that Warren Buffett spends up to 80% of each day reading.
According to Tom Corley, author of Rich Habits (which I highly recommend, by the way), 88% of rich people read for 30 minutes+ each day for the purpose of education.
While you definitely don’t need to be that committed to reading, there’s no doubt that you should include some reading into your everyday routine!
Final Thoughts About Establishing Effective Habits
We can get so caught up in the day-to-day grind it can be hard to look at the bigger picture. And that bigger picture is this: establishing effective daily habits leads to greater productivity over the long haul.
I hope this list of 7 productive habits of successful business owners has inspired you to start establishing your own set of habits.
Need more productivity tips? Check out my post, How to Work More Effectively: 3 Steps to Getting More Done in Less Time.
Which habits above are you going to try out this week? Let me know in the comments below!