We can often feel like we’re suddenly scrambling around trying to get our final things done in the last few minutes of our workday. Many of us even look up and it’s five minutes past our leave time, so we shove everything in a bag and head out. Even though there are only so many things that can be done at the end of the day, this time can be crucial to your continued success at work. The key to utilizing the last 10 minutes of your day is to manage your expectations. You’re unlikely to start any huge projects or time-consuming tasks, but there are steps you can take to help you end the day on a positive note.
Save your time at the end of the workday to prepare for tomorrow, organize your workspace, and reflect on what you achieved in the past eight hours. In the end, you should feel confident and proud when you walk out of the office. Make those last 10 minutes really count by implementing a few simple changes. Here’s how to capitalize on your last few minutes at work:
1. SEND YOUR LAST EMAIL AND SIGN OUT
Begin by sending your last emails for the day as this helps you get closure and tie up any loose ends. With these last few tasks, you can end your day with a win. You’ll feel better about leaving the office with a sense of accomplishment. While signing out of your emails feels like a small task, leaving the office mentally is an important part of ending your day. It will help you switch from office-mode to personal life. Taking a real break from work is important to allow your brain to recover and re-energize. It will make you more productive in the long run and keep you from getting burnt out on any projects.
2. REFLECT ON YOUR WORK DAY AND REDUCE MENTAL CLUTTER
Reflecting on your workday is an important time to remember your accomplishments. This will help you leave stress at the office and create a good mood for the evening. Make sure to reduce your stress by writing down anything that’s on your mind or that you may need to remember for the next day. Additionally, it’s beneficial to take a blank piece of paper and write down the tasks that you were able to complete and the goals you reached that day. This action will set you up for a positive and energized transition to home by increasing your confidence. If didn’t get a lot done during the day, take some time to think about the challenges you faced. What resources will help you be more successful tomorrow?
3. UPDATE YOUR TO-DO LIST
Whether it’s pen and paper, on your computer or phone – you’ll want to update your to-do list. Check everything off that you got accomplished that day. After, begin listing out and prioritizing your tasks for the next day. That way, the moment you sit down at your desk the next day you are ready to tackle the biggest tasks. This will eliminate the time you spend in the morning planning for the current day. Write down any concerning items and urgent to-do’s for the next day so you don’t spend time thinking about them at home. By updating your to-do list, you’re leaving yourself in a position to hit the ground running and achieve success for the next workday.
4. ORGANIZE YOUR DESK
The condition of your surroundings can definitely affect the way you work, and on top of that, 50% of time is wasted on low-value activities like finding information. Having an organized desk helps you think clearly and effectively. Clutter demands our attention, and by eliminating it at the end of the day, you can start your mornings fresh. Try to limit your stationery to only what you use every day and file away unneeded paperwork. The same goes with your computer — no one wants to have a cluttered screen. Make sure all files are put into the proper folders so you aren’t wasting time sifting through them. This will also help to reduce any anxieties or stress and boost productivity for the next workday.
5. SAY A PROPER GOODBYE
Saying a proper goodbye to your team helps build rapport with them while also signaling that you’re leaving for the day. It also gives you a chance to compliment them on their completed work or say thank you for their assistance or leadership on a project. Recognizing their wins can increase their confidence, as well as create a positive atmosphere for your office. You can even go so far as to doing someone a quick favor or a random act of kindness, which will help improve office relationships. If you want some tips, we’ll show you how we do it the MAKE way.
By doing these 5 simple steps every day before you leave work you can set yourself up for great success. Overall, these steps will help you be more organized, productive, and in return increase long-term happiness in your job. For more insights, click here.