For many people, their cellphone is an extension of their arm during the workday. Some consider the device a distraction, but can it also be useful and increase productivity? For Lifehacker writer Mihir Patkar, the answer is yes.
Patkar recommends using a note function on your phone as a procrastination pad. If distracting thoughts come into your head while you’re working, make a quick note on your phone and continue with your work instead of opening a new window or tab to deal with them. You won’t lose the thought that came to you and you’ll continue to be productive with your current task.
Other ways to use your cellphone for productivity in the office:
• Listen to music. You can block out distracting noises around you and really focus on your work. The presence of headphones is also a signal to others that you are busy.
• Get some exercise. Set alarms to get up from your desk at regular intervals. Use standing or walking time to read emails. Send quick responses from the phone; flag messages that require attachments or longer text and deal with them once you’re back at the desk.
• Make excuses. Colleague coming your way that you don’t want to deal with? Pretend to be on the phone, excuse yourself to check an “urgent message” or text another colleague to come and rescue you with a nonexistent issue that needs your immediate attention.
• Record notes. Let the microphone take notes for you in meetings, snap pictures of the office whiteboard during a brainstorming session or use the voice memo feature.
— Adapted from “How Your Phone Can Make You a Better Worker at the Office,” Mihir Patkar, Lifehacker.