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If you’re an insurance agent, Big “I” is a great resource to help you build and grow your agency. We’re excited to partner with them monthly in publishing content that gives agents the inside scoop on marketing in the insurance world. Check out our latest Big “I” article below!

Success as an insurance agent comes when you channel some serious self-awareness and figure out what habits and activities allow you to produce your best work. Here are 11 habits that top-performing agents have in common:

1. Limit distractions. 

Our phones can easily turn from useful tools into tiny monsters of distraction and mayhem. Having said that, a quick scroll on Facebook or playing five minutes of a game can actually rejuvenate your brain and help with productivity.

So how do you find a balance? The secret lies in setting limits. Timers are your best friend when it comes to productivity. Set the timer on your phone for 10 minutes and allow yourself to relax. Scroll social media to your heart’s content. Read funny memes. Play a turn against your mom in Words with Friends. And then stop once the timer goes off. Return to work and limit distractions until your next scheduled break.

2. Take a productivity test. 

What hours of the day are you most productive? What fuels your productivity? Try taking an online productivity test to help you understand your strengths and weaknesses.

3. Disconnect. 

It’s amazing that we live in a time where we can essentially do all of our work from a small device in our hands. However, this constant access can make it hard to disconnect and recharge. If you get home from work at around 6 p.m., block the next hour off as tech-free time. When you return to your phone that evening, don’t check your work email or apps. Take a break.

4. Move your body. 

Feeling that post-lunch crash starting to set in? Take a walk! This is basically the same idea as standing up and walking to the water cooler, but it’s taking things a few steps further. Studies have shown that movement throughout the day leads to increased memory, concentration and mental sharpness.

5. Draw on outside motivation. 

If you’re feeling a little blah or stuck in a rut, guess what? There are people out there whose entire jobs revolve around pumping people up and teaching healthy habits. Life coaches, motivational speakers and self-help authors all exist to help you be your best self. Listen to their advice throughout the day via podcasts, Audible or YouTube.

6. Just say no. 

At some point in our lives, we for some reason learned that it’s bad to say “no.” But it’s actually okay. In fact, it’s good. Your time is valuable and should be filled with things that really matter and help you be your happiest and most productive self.

7. List it out. 

Don’t rely on your brain to remember all of the tasks and responsibilities you have. That’s too much to ask of one brain. Instead, make a list. Actually, make multiple lists for different areas of your work. Edit your lists. Keep lists for various projects. Break down large lists into smaller lists. Make daily lists addressing the day’s most urgent items. Keep lists of your routine responsibilities that you have to check off every day. Lists are your friend.

8. Block out time. 

One of the best ways to increase productivity is by creating time blocks for set activities throughout your day. Set a schedule for everything you need to accomplish and then follow it. Some people swear by the Pomodoro Technique for this.

9. Always be learning. 

Learn new skills that might help you in your career. Schedule time each day to read books, blogs and other industry-related material.

10. Don’t micromanage. 

It’s important to establish solid relationships with your team members. There’s nothing worse than a fellow employee or manager that can’t seem to let go of control. Always trust that your team is doing their assigned job to prevent yourself from slipping into micromanagement habits.

11. Ditch the perfectionist mindset. 

Perfection is the enemy of productivity. Mistakes happen. You’ll make mistakes. Your team will make mistakes. Instead of dwelling on it, move on, apologize to your team and tell them you’re working to improve.