Many of us have a daily list of things we want to get done in the office. Yet when the week is done, we still feel unproductive. To combat this, try keeping a weekly accomplishment list to record what you've done.
Photo by Sean McGrath.
As productivity site A Life of Productivity explains, writing down the things you've accomplished at the end of the week helps you maintain some perspective. The little (or big!) things you've done in the week are harder to forget. More importantly, it forces you to focus on the end result of all your busyness, rather than constantly doing stuff to feel like you're accomplishing more than you are:
The list lets me think in terms of how much I accomplish, and not simply how much I do. This pushes me to do less busywork, and focus more on my important tasks that actually lead me to accomplish something. The list is surprisingly motivating, especially for when I find myself slacking off or doing pointless busywork -- just glancing at the list motivates me to add bigger items to it. Even if I got a lot done today, I'm still motivated the next day to grow the list further.
This isn't a new concept at all, but remembering to do it is key. Even your small wins can be great motivators, and forcing yourself to write down your accomplishments can also have a positive impact on your self-esteem. It's harder to focus solely on the mistakes you've made when you're adding to a list of things you did right.