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5 Things Killing Your Productivity In Your Law Practice

Have you ever come to the end of the day and wondered, “Where did the day go?” Most likely you have been so completely focused on what you are doing that you were not paying attention to the time. Sometimes this is a good thing if what you were doing is helping you move forward in your law practice.

On the other hand, this can also be a bad thing if you have been doing something that does not move you towards your ultimate goals for your law practice. What do I mean by this?

Sometimes we can be so connected technologically that it is easy to get distracted with the various notifications and disruptions that keep us glued to our smartphones, tablets, and computers. Getting work done is hindered because of these distractions. Here are 5 things that are probably keeping you from being productive:

  1. Unproductive social media time

Sometimes when you are online engaging and working on your law practice facebook page, twitter account or sharing linkedin articles, you can easily be lured into the social media rabbit hole and the next thing you know you’ve spent an hour scrolling through your timeline and that motion still needs to be filed.

Tip: Try and schedule social media time into your schedule so that you still have this time in your calendar but also to have a timeframe to stick to.  I check in on social media early in the morning, in the middle of the day and at the end of the day.  I limit myself to 15 minutes because I know how distracting it can be.

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  1.  Checking your emails constantly and responding on the go

Being responsive to your clients is a good thing but allowing yourself to set your clients’ expectations that they can email you whenever and you respond within an hour is a bad setup to begin with. Set time in your day to check and respond to emails rather than being reactive to what appears inside your inbox.  Just like with social media, try scheduling “email time” on your daily calendar.

  1.  Enabling notifications on your social media accounts

By nature we are curious things and we like to know what is happening when that notification goes off. We want to know what is up!

Practice turning your notifications on mute while you work so you are not tempted to check your social media accounts every time a notification comes through.

  1. Not enough rest

You are working so hard that your body is the last thing you think of. It also needs to rest and re-energize. Give yourself time to step outside of the office to enjoy a nice day outside for a walk or to hit the gym.

Having a restful sleep can also help energize your mind. Try to get 8 hours of sleep each night.

  1. Not prioritizing tasks

You only have 24 hours in the day which realistically goes down to about 16 hours once you factor in your sleep time. You have a list of things to do that probably requires more than the 16 or 24 hours. What you should do is to have your tasks prioritized accordingly to help you get those important tasks done first.

Consider using a strategic approach to your time and perhaps reviewing your tasks using Stephen Covey’s 4 Quadrant Matrix.

I use the Day Designer by Whitney English to plan my days and I only list 3 tasks as my top “to-dos” so that I can have some sense of accomplishment each day.  

Once I write down my top 3, I set time blocks on my calendar to actually work on them.

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What other areas would you consider that may be affecting your productivity in your practice? Please share.

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