We all have that enviable friend who somehow gets everything she needs to done yet never seems like a massive ball of stress in the process. She’s simply a highly productive person. And you can be one, too, by stealing some of these seven secrets.

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They don’t multitask
According to a study at Stanford University, people who multitask "do not pay attention, control their memory or switch from one job to another as well as those who prefer to complete one task at a time." Focus on one thing and complete it before moving onto the next.  

They say no often
It’s not easy, but when you have a ton of stuff to do already, saying no is necessary. It's about knowing your limits: If an extra task is going to push you over the edge, deny it in a polite but firm way. You don’t want to come across as rude, but you also don’t want to overload yourself and hinder your overall progress.

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They’re experts at delegation
This could mean starting a carpool with your neighbors and their kids to clear up time in both parents’ schedules or assigning part of a presentation to a colleague who has a little more time than you do. The sooner you delegate, the sooner you can refocus on your most crucial responsibilities.

They aren’t perfectionists
Productive people value a job well done, but they aren’t obsessive about everything being flawless--nor do they agonize over every little detail, which slows down the entire process. Let things go, learn from imperfections and adjust your routine accordingly.

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They take care of themselves
Being truly productive requires firing on all cylinders, and to do that you have to be at your best. That means getting enough sleep and living a healthy lifestyle where diet and exercise are concerned. Listen to what your body tells you and prioritize your health and happiness.

They value quality over quantity
Quality and quantity of time, that is. The most productive person in your office might be the person who spends the least amount of time there. It’s not about how long you work; it’s about how much you get done. Train yourself to have only a finite amount of time for something, and you’ll soon adjust your approach to finishing tasks.

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They define their own success
Just as productive people aren’t perfectionists, they also don’t measure themselves against others. It takes too much energy away from their own responsibilities. Instead, put your head down, do your own thing and don’t worry about what anyone else is doing.

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