Ten Incredible Ways To Stay Focused At Work
A colleague texts you on WhatsApp seeking advice on a project. Three new emails from your clients pop up in your inbox. Someone in the background can’t blabber enough about their kids going to the zoo. And to top it all, that splitting headache who thought you got rid of last night, now has second thoughts about leaving you. How would you stay focused at work in such situations.
Would you still be able to focus on work? Or let’s say you are bent on finishing a job, and suddenly something comes up. You don’t know how to bury that distraction. You squeamishly put up a half-hearted fight and end up getting even more distracted.
Five minutes, ten minutes and even an hour sometimes. When you get back – boom – you have no idea where you left off and why you couldn’t get your mind and heart into it. If you face this, you are not alone my friend.
If you are often troubled by office chatter and find it hard to focus, there’s no way you can be productive. And it gets annoying most of the time, right? How do people manage to stay focused all day long while others struggle to get their tasks done? Stuck for ideas? Well, here are 10 ways to stay focused at work.
Always Enjoy What You Do
Find ways for the tasks to become fun, like allowing your creativity and imagination to play in the process. Try to think out of the box and don’t stick within the borders of approved output standards. Keep your options open for new and fun ideas.
When you work on something you call your own, you are more likely to stay focused. Ask yourself why you should do it. Answering this correctly will lead you to that output you desire, and so you value the task as much as you want to.
Get the Music Flowing
Headphones tell the world that you are not interested in nonsensical blabbering. It issues a clarion call to people around you that you are too busy to be available to join the chatter. This will make people realize that you are getting disturbed because of them.
Become visibly annoyed when someone comes between you and your work. You get the drift, make it personal.
Bonus advice – play music loudly enough that it sounds like your own personal desk concert.
Get In the Flow
Before blaming the outside world, take a minute to evaluate your own productivity. Ask yourself, are you really in the flow when working on your tasks? To get into the flow, try to develop your interest in working on that particular task.
Another reason why people don’t focus on work is, they wait for the deadline to come biting after them. People think as the deadline approaches, they are able to work more efficiently. This is a gigantic misconception. This not only affects your outcome but also pressurizes people that affects productivity.
Choose A Great Table and Chair Combo
Many people find working physically strenuous even if it’s done seated most of the time. When you are not comfortable enough physically, how are you supposed to focus and work for nine hours straight?
Don’t lose precious time and don’t be distracted by discomfort. Get a really good chair and great back support. Make sure that your desk or worktable is well structured as well. Ideally, there should be a 30-degree drop between your eyeline and the top of your computer screen. That way, you can work for many hours without getting your back or eyes strained.
Let Others Know of Your Strict Personal Policies
Got to town about the fact that you don’t tolerate people around you while you work. Tell them you don’t like other people getting indulged in your work. Chances are you will be left alone in the hours when you are focused on really big, important work.
In most such cases, people will only interact and talk to you when they know you are on your break. Unless there’s very urgent work, they will not disturb you. Afterall, they want the same (we hope).
Stay Away From social media
Aren’t we all guilty beyond redemption?
Accept it or not, social media is the biggest distraction today, no matter what you do. You anyway check your social media before going to bed and after getting up right? Then stay away from these sites at least while at work. Discipline yourself to log in only when you have free time.
Don’t use social media while working because you are most likely to stay much longer than planned on these sites as something interesting and perky always comes with them.
Staying focused needs concentration and alertness. Coffee can help you achieve that. But excessive coffee intake can be hazardous to your health. Have coffee but in between specific time periods.
Avoid drinking coffee before a big meeting or on an empty stomach. You don’t want to be running to the bathroom all meeting, right? Remember, don’t drink coffee after 1pm. It can keep you from falling asleep at night.
Plan Before You Start
Every day before beginning work on your tasks, write down three important things you need to accomplish by the end of the day. Find a planning method that works best for you. Be it a prioritized to-do list or an hourly working schedule, stick to it.
Don’t forget to plan your breaks as well. Your brain cannot work eight hours on the trot. It needs time to recover as well.
If you feel no pressure to complete a task, you are most likely to procrastinate twice as much. Set clear deadlines for all the tasks in your to-do list. By doing this, you create a sense of urgency, making it easy to achieve the set of flow and truly focus on important work.
Moreover, having frozen deadlines also helps you battle your inner perfectionist.
Take Small Breaks
Nobody can work three hours without a single flicker of thought acting as diversion. It is better to take small breaks at regular intervals than to feel overwhelmed by multiple ideas and thoughts.
Make these small breaks a computer-free zone. That means, use this time to brew coffee, listen to energizing songs, chat with colleagues or read a book.