Over the past year I've been doing a lot of self-development in the area of productivity. How can I best order my days so that the things I really want to do actually get done?
The most important thing I've come to embrace is the power of habits. Once you're in the habit of doing something it is vastly easier to motivate yourself to do it. So when I really want to get something done I get in the habit of working on it at least a little every day. I have been attempting to share this wisdom with my students but so far I have had little success when there is not already strong habit-forming behavior in place at home.
Lately I've been refining my habit system with an awareness of when I have the most energy and which things are harder or easier for me to motivate myself to do. I have more energy during the day before dinner than any time later in the evening. The mornings are even better than the afternoons. So I've been focusing on doing the hard stuff early. The hard stuff is anything I'm not yet in a solid habit of doing or anything that I'm particularly reluctant to do. If I do that stuff first, then I'll still have energy to do the easy stuff later.
What methods have you discovered that help you be your most productive?