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7 Things That Are Killing Your Productivity and What to Do About Them

You work extremely hard, day in and day out. You have a to-do list that’s a mile long and you’re pretty sure you can get it all done. But then something happens, seemingly without fail. Morning turns to night and you’ve gotten next to nothing done. Maybe you know why it happens and maybe you don’t. Either way, it’s frustrating.

Your lack of productivity is costing you a lot of money. It’s causing you to work much longer hours than you need to. Is there something wrong with you? Actually, you’re in good company. It’s an extremely normal occurrence, especially for those of us who work from home. Getting work done when you work from home online can feel a lot like swimming upstream. You’re working and working and not getting results for the amount of effort you put in.

In fact, does this seem familiar?

Day in the life of a writer?


Or maybe you can’t figure it out at all. You sit down to your to-do list and really give it your best effort. But, it seems to take you twice as long to get anything does as it takes everyone else. It’s not fair, and you’re ready to do something about it…if you don’t give up out of frustration first.

No matter which camp you fall into, it’s time to take control. It’s time that you’re able to tackle your to-do list with vigor each day. It’s time for you to be able to get more done and spend less time working at the computer because of your newfound productivity.

I’ve identified 7 of the most common issues I see day in and day out for those I work with. These 7 things suck your productivity dry. Tackle them head on with the easy solutions I’ll reveal and you could quite possibly see your productivity double.

Productivity Killer #1: Distractions

Let’s face it– there are a ton of distractions both online and off. Your family distracts you, social media distracts you, heck– even your racing thoughts distract you. It’s hard to stay focused, or even to get focused in the first place. They say it can take around 15 to 20 minutes to re-focus every time you get distracted, even if you’re only distracted for a short time. They also say that out of an 8 hour work day, you probably get around 2 hours of “true” work done. That’s a real bummer.

What to Do About It

So, what should you do? You need to set yourself up for success. If you work at home, you need to set work hours for yourself. Prepare your family for this and request that they don’t distract you. If you’re precious about your work time, you’ll have much more time to spend with your family anyway. It’s much better to have set work hours than to work all day long, frustrated with work and frustrated with your family because they’re distracting you.

There are also tools that can help you. For instance, there are tools that will block you from certain websites or turn the Internet off altogether. This can force you to focus, distraction-free.

Maybe you can immediately pinpoint why this happens to you. It’s pretty easy to get caught up checking email and Facebook, only to find that an entire day has gone by and you haven’t gotten anything really useful done. You aren’t really aware of it while you’re in this fog of productivity-sucking activities, but you’re well aware of it after– guilty that it was even possible for you to spend your working day that way.

Examples include:

LeechBlock – – LeechBlock is a Firefox add-on that blocks time-wasting sites.

TimeTracker – – This is a Firefox add-on that will help you analyze how much time you spend online. Sometimes, you need a dose of reality to reign yourself in from getting distracted.

RescueTime – – This is a download that tracks how you spend your time on your computer, and how much time you spend on each task.

Need more? Simply Google “block websites” and you’ll find variations of whatever it is you need, for whichever browser or operating system you use. I’m sure you can find something that will work for you. Sometimes, you need more than willpower alone to help you avoid distraction.

Productivity Killer #2: Lack of Knowledge

It’s hard to move forward with your day if you don’t feel like you know enough about what you’re doing. This problem is especially prevalent for those who are new to running their own business.

I have to tell you– there’s a big difference between those who succeed online and those who don’t. Those who are destined for success don’t let anyone or anything stand in their way.

What to Do About It

If you don’t know something, you need to find the answer… period. Find a way to move past the roadblock and learn what you don’t know.

YouTube – – Obviously you know about YouTube, but I urge you to make it a habit to search YouTube for help with technical issues and more.

Google – – Again, if you don’t know, Google it. There’s nothing you can’t find these days.

Zanran – – This is a numerical data search engine. Google Scholar – – Find journal articles and more.

Productivity Killer #3: Lack of Goals

It’s really hard for you to succeed and stay focused if you don’t have goals. When you have goals, when you know you’re aiming for, something incredible happens. You can develop laser-like focus that keeps you on task and helps you succeed.

What to Do About It

You don’t really need tools to set goals– you just need pen and paper. Set extremely specific goals about your business– simple. There are software options as well.

Lifetick – This is online goal setting software. GoalsOnTrack – — Again– Goal setting software, with some nice options for goals on the go.

Goalscape – — Yet another goal setting option.

Productivity Killer #4: Lack of Motivation

What are you working toward? Why do you want or need to succeed? If you’re not clear on your “why” it’s going to be very difficult for you to succeed. Finding your “why” and motivation goes hand in hand with setting goals.

What to Do About It

There’s no fast-track or software for this. It’s such an individual thing. The answer is to do some soul-searching. You need to have a “why” for your business or your productivity will suffer.

Productivity Killer #5: Trying To “Go It Alone”

It’s hard to get stuff done when you feel all alone. It’s discouraging and sometimes a little depressing. This problem is especially prevalent for those who work from home, for themselves. It doesn’t have to be this way.

What to Do About It

It’s time for you to find an online crew who will help keep you on task and accountable. It can do a lot for your mindset and productivity if you have others rooting for you.


You can simnply find some masterminf groups on facebook and be active everyday. Everybody from there are in your situation and they want exaclty what you want.So just be active and talk with people.

Productivity Killer #6: Lack of Ideas

Maybe you’re not as productive as you could be because you’re short of ideas. You need to have great, innovative ideas to succeed in business. Having great ideas motivates you and pushes you forward. Whether you need ideas for blog posts, products, or your business in general, there’s never a reason to feel stuck.

What to Do About It

You need to find ideas! Maybe take a walk or go to the beach– give your mind a rest from “thinking” and you’ll probably find that the best ideas find their way to you. There are also some great online tools that work for brainstorming.

BrainyQuote – – Sometimes, you need to get inspired for new ideas. This site lists an incredible number of fantastic quotes that can

inspire you and give you fodder for coming up with ideas for your business.

Hubspot’s Blog Topic Generator – – Stuck for ideas for your blog? This generator can help get the wheels turning.

Getting inspired by others – – Look to those who’ve been successful before you for great ideas. This Wall Street Journal article is a great place to start.

Productivity Killer #7: Overwhelm

If you feel overwhelmed, you probably won’t be very productive simply because you don’t know where to start. It’s so important to list your tasks each day and to have a way to organize everything you have to do. That way, you can just move through your tasks and check them off one by one.

What to Do About It

It’s time to get serious about your to-do list. There are a lot of tools that can help you manage everything you have to do, but the one that works for me, and has had a major effect on my business and my life is time boxing. It can be done with kitchen timers, but I loved this software so much that I’ve paid over $4,000 for the rights to rebrand it and market it very inexpensively (probably even less that a set of a dozen kitchen timers, and much more effective)


It’s Time to Get Productive

Where there’s a will, there’s a way. It’s time for you to find a solution that will work for you. Figure out what’s holding you back and then find a way to work around it. You absolutely can get more done in less time, and with less stress. Get it done!



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