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We’ve been talking a lot about how you can become productive. But there’s productivity and then there’s super-productivity. Super-productive people have something as close to a superpower as you’ll see in real life. They can turn whatever limited time and skills they might have into something amazing and great. The good thing about this superpower is you can have it too. We applied a bit of science and studied a lot of super-producers and figured out 5 special abilities that make them do more with less.

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Do you have these abilities? Read on and find out.

1. They Work Super Hard

Super-productive people know that you can’t become successful if you don’t put in the work. Most people stop at just doing the work though. Working just enough makes you a moderate success, but working super hard is what boosts your success exponentially.

Before you do the work though, you first have to define what success is for you. Knowing what you’re working towards not only motivates you, but also gives you the direction you should travel to reach your goal.

Super-productive people also forget about perfection while still producing excellent results. It’s perfectly okay to aim for perfection if you’re an award-winner or a bestseller. But I’m betting you’re not there yet, so just aim for excellence, meaning you just need to do something better that the rest. That way, you still get things done and don’t need to worry about getting things 100%. Sometimes, 80% is all that’s needed.

Super-productive people also appreciate the work that’s done more than most. In every project, not everything goes your way. If things get done properly, just be thankful it didn’t go sideways. This also means they don’t waste time thinking about alternate universes where the work might have been done right. It’s not worth wasting brain cells on.

2. They Value Their Time

Everyone gets a certain amount of time on this world. And for most of us, we don’t really know when we’ll run out. That’s why they have a plan for each day. Whether every minute is planned out or they just have a short list of todos, they know what they will be doing each day. And they also know the best time for them to work.

That’s why they defend their productive time from any and all takers. For most, mornings are their super-productive so they do their most important work before lunch. All the work they do during this time gets them closer to their goals, so no busy work and definitely no meetings.

And because they plan so much, they also have gained another special ability: the ability to estimate how long tasks take. This is key since taking too long on something wastes time while taking too little means you do sloppy work.

And don’t think that super-productive people are workaholics. They also know when to get rest but the difference is they take meaningful breaks. Time off is spent with family, side projects or learning new things.

3. They Hold Themselves Accountable

With great productivity should come great accountability. Super-productive people make others hold them accountable to make sure they’re always doing the right thing. Get someone who has a big stake in your life, like a mentor or a close colleague. This person will not only set you straight if you’re in the wrong direction, he’ll also be the one telling you to take time off if you’re overworked.

But being accountable also means that they embrace criticism gracefully. Feedback is sometimes such a hard pill to swallow, but what they do is reflect on their mistakes, learn and move on.

4. They Know When To Say No

Saying yes often means getting something good in return or doing something new. Super-productive resist this urge because they know saying yes might stray them from the right path.

First, they keep todos on a short leash. Only the top 2-3 most important things go through it. Nothing else can go into it without level 10 security clearance. Second, they turn off distractions. Technology is often the culprit here so keeping those updates, notifications and alerts at bay is a must.

People are also distractions so they choose who to spend time with. One good rule to follow is to only spend time with people who will make you better and never waste time with people who suck the life out of you.

5. They Stick To Regimens

Doing the same thing everyday seems dull and boring, but that’s just because you’re looking at it like a normal person. Super-productive people see daily regimens as a way of making life easier, so they can focus on the things that matter. Doing things on auto-pilot isn’t bad if you’re the one who turned it on in the first place.

One of the most important habits they keep is getting enough sleep. For some it’s 6 hours, for most it’s 7 or 8. However much sleep you need, just make sure you go to bed regularly, which often means going to bed early. This also has a productive side effect of waking up early and making the most out of those morning hours..

Another regimen they keep is exercising regularly. Both the body and brain benefit from regular exercise. Exercise also releases a natural high so if you dread doing it, don’t. It’s gets more fun the more you do it, you’ll see.

Finally, super-productive people also automate work and create systems. Some parts of their work clearly don’t need much brain power and willpower, so why not have someone or something else do it?

So, which abilities do you have already? Try working on getting all 5 so that you can become super-productive as well. Maybe the next time you read this article, you’ll be one of those super-productive people we love writing about.

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Glenn Santos

Author Glenn Santos

Glenn has been writing about technology, productivity and lifehacks for 10 years now. He was previously an editor for Android Authority and Geeky Gadgets, and was one of the first contributors for Startup Weekend's main blog.

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