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7 Tricks To Get More Done As A Developer

jha profile image Amit jha ・6 min read

You have been there, haven't you? You have had epic ideas in your head that could bring down FACEBOOK, make you the next Steve Wozniak? But you didn't do anything about it because you were too cooked for it.

OR

You are lazy. Sliding your fingers on the keyboard and building something wonderful is a waste of your mental horsepower.

But you want to change, right?

You want to take down FACEBOOK or you want to make something more mature than a stupid social networking site that survives by selling your data.

Well, I'm here to help. In today's blog post I'm going to present to you 7 ways to turn your life around as a developer. The techniques are fully tested by professionals and many of them are part of my daily routine.

You can learn about them through self-help books but hey! who has time to read when you are busy building cool stuff?

Let's go...

1. Clear Your Room/Desk/House

clean your room gif
What!! No way. That's the most useless thing to do. I'm done here. This post is useless.
Hang on buddy...
Cleaning your room has a psychological effect that makes you feel happy and positive immediately, at least to some extent.
Not just that you are moving your limbs (thank god) while cleaning, that means your brain is making decisions instead of procrastinating.

'Where should I throw this rotten banana peel?'

Nah mate, I'm not convinced.

sure, here is a link that may convince you.

Still not convinced? You can close this post. We are talking business here, this is not a pep talk.

2. Make A Journal

Writing journal gif
Actually, make 2.
One for your day planning and to-do list (To-Do Book) and another to write ideas and thoughts (Thought Book).

Do you already do that? Oh, you have tired but didn't work out? okay.

Try again. But this time try this:

  • Every morning open your journal and look at your long term goal and check where do you stand currently (ex: 23% achieved). This will give you perspective.
  • Then based upon your current standing start making entries in the to-do list.
  • Once you are done with that flip back to the previous day and copy the pending tasks.
  • Lastly, start writing the estimated time when you will do that task.

This entire process hardly takes 6/7 mins but it will have a huge impact on your productivity.

Why?

Because you are no longer worried about "what was I suppose to do next?". You have all that on paper.

But that's not it, make sure to carry it everywhere and keep checking it even when you know what task is next. This will help you stay focused.

Strike the task as soon as it is done. This will have a subconscious impact and make you feel better. YOU ARE IN MOTION!

One more thing. Don't hesitate to make changes. For example, one task took 1/2 hr more than you expected (it will always happen, trust me) then take 5 mins and adjust the estimated time for all upcoming tasks accordingly.

The idea of a to-do list is not to have a rigid schedule and get everything done, the idea is to get more done

Todo list has changed my life for the better and I'm sure it will change yours too.

Moving one to thought book.

Why do I need it? You do. We all do.

As much as you may deny it we are not conscious about our thoughts. The notion that thoughts are progressive, moving from one topic to another is wrong. Actually our brain is much more complex than that. Most of those thoughts that we have has been there even before you realise they existed. If they are positive GOOD. But if they are negative it will only affect your productivity. The best way to deal with it is to write it down. You don't have to read your thought book, it's just a psychological trick.

As soon as you catch yourself thinking instead to being productive, sit bolt straight (that's important) and write your current thought in the book. As time passes you will become more productive and think less crap.

It works, trust me.
ps: DON'T USE TODO APPS. USE PEN AND PAPER ONLY. IT'S NOT COOL BUT IT'S MORE EFFECTIVE.

3. Throw your phone away

Throw phone way gif
Goddammit Charles, not literally...

Now, I know you are outraged but trust me your biggest distraction is your phone (FACEBOOK/WhatsApp/Instagram/Wechat etc). If you want to be a productive developer keep your phone as far as possible (ex. keep it in the hall while you work in the room). It will be hard in the beginning but eventually, you will get over the urge to check it.

If your work requires you to use your phone (App developer) then keep the data off or avoid using the social networking applications (hell just delete them bob).

Not just on your phone, try to avoid using social networking on your laptop/desktop. How? keep checking your todo list and look at the time to find out what you should be doing at the moment then FORCE yourself to do that.

Keep writing your thoughts.

4. Take breaks

relax gif
Don't get so caught up while working that you forget to relax. Our brain (and eyes) need to rest after every few hours for better concentration, make sure they get that.

One neat trick is to drink a lot of water 😉

Also, make sure you check your todo list after every break to make sure you are on track. If you do not then modify the todo list. Be flexible.

5. Work out regularly

workout gif
Regular workout keeps your body fit and your mind laser-sharp.
There is nothing much I have to say here. This is a no crap post. Workout, it's good.

Here are the things you should do at the bare minimum:

  1. 10 Jumping jacks
  2. 10 Inclined push-ups
  3. 10 wide push-ups
  4. Run for 10 Mins
  5. 5 wide push-ups
  6. 5 Inclined push-ups
  7. 5 Jumping jacks

This will hardly take 25 mins of your time but you'll feel young, boomer.

6. Avoid caffeine

coffee
As much as you'll say otherwise caffeine is not good for you (in the long run). Make sure you don't consume it in any form. Replace it with more healthy options. Drink warm water. Green tea. The list goes on.

It helps you concentrate more? At what cost? Your health is more important than staying up until 4 AM to get something done.

And honestly, if you follow all the advice above then there won't be any need to stay up that late. You will be doing more than what you expected in record time.

7. Sleep at least 6hrs every day

Sleep gif
Sleep is one of the most essential parts of our schedule. Sadly, as developers, we sacrifice it more frequently than we should. As I said earlier if you follow all the advice in this post you won't need to stay up late or drink coffee. Your life will change forever. Mine did.

That's all from me folks. Tell more about your productivity hacks in the comment section below. I would love to learn from you all.

Cheers,
Jha

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