Productivity + Life Efficiency
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Getting More Done in a New York Minute

Below is a guest post from Paula Rizzo. Paula is the Senior Health Producer for and founder of, a blog focused on living efficiently through the effective use of to-do lists.

It’s called the “city that never sleeps” for a reason – New Yorkers are going non-stop. You can literally find someone doing something at all hours – day or night — in this city. Sometimes it’s difficult to keep up – even for natives. But between work, school and pleasure – it can seem impossible to get anything done as your world is whizzing by you.

I’ve been here my whole life so take it from me–there are some key ways to get more done in a New York minute:

1.  Make a List: Never underestimate the power of a good to-do list.  It’s really a goal list worked out in print or on a screen. If you write it – you can do it. Seriously – it’s a good mood booster to see everything written down so it’s accessible and out of your head. There’s nothing better than crossing out everything on your list. Keeping a list will force you to plan ahead, allow you to give your memory a break and make you focus on the tasks at hand.

2.  Focus on One Thing at a Time: I can multitask with the best of them but sometimes it makes sense to just step back and do one thing at a time. Do it well, do it on time and move on to the next task. I know it can be difficult to put other things aside but just try it – your productivity will soar.

3.  Multitask: I know I just said not to do this – but for some people it works. Try to do more than one thing at a time – as in…exercise while you are grocery shopping. Lifting heavy cans and pushing overstuffed carts will work those biceps. Listen to an audio presentation for work while you go to the gym. See multitasking isn’t so bad.

4.  Unplug for a Bit: Take just a half hour to focus on your tasks without your phone ringing and your email buzzing. I know it sounds scary – but you can do it. Shut off the electronics for a little while and you’ll get more done.

5.  Shop Online: One of the absolutely best inventions ever has been online shopping. You can do it while you’re on your couch, in your office or anywhere really. Why go to the grocery store when you can have someone deliver your food to you for a nominal fee?  Online shopping allows you to work on things that you’re really good at and still get more done. For me it’s a no-brainer – get clicking.

6.  Expect the Unexpected: Especially in New York – there are surprises around every corner…be adaptable and you’ll be successful. If life throws you a curveball – be ready to hit a homerun. Allow yourself to be flexible when new deadlines arise without stressing out. How do you do this? Baby steps and deep breaths.

Paula Rizzo is the Senior Health Producer for and founder of  She’s an Emmy Award winner and attributes much of her success to her compulsive list making.  She makes a list about just about anything and started to help others become more organized, focused and efficient while being less stressed.


  1. Great tips. I personally need to unplug more. Even as I write this my phone is beeping and it distracts me more than I care to admit.

  2. Thanks for your comment Kari! I know what you mean — it takes a lot of discipline to “unplug” but once you do it once you’ll be hooked because you’ll get so much done! Good luck!

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