Raise your hand if you’ve ever found it hard to focus. Now raise your hand if you’ve found it hard to focus at any point in the last month. Now how about in the last week? Right now there certainly seems to be plenty of distractions going on so how do you keep yourself focus and efficient at work with all those distractions floating around you? Here are four easy tips to combat that.
Turn It All Off
Okay so maybe not everything, but who hasn’t had a train of thought interrupted by an unsolicited notification? Whether it’s a news alert or Instagram letting you know Becky from high school went live, notifications like these can totally derail your focus. There are a few different ways to handle this. The first and arguably the easiest is to put your phone in a drawer and set a timer for when you can look at it again. If that doesn’t suit you, turning your phone on “Do Not Disturb” mode or selecting specific apps to stop getting push alerts from. Maybe it’s not the notifications but the impulse to refresh your feed. Tough love on this one but sign out of social media accounts on your computer and phone to hold yourself accountable for not consistently checking these.
Make a Plan and Stick to It
One of the things that can make any workday challenging is the unpredictable, and boy do we know a thing or two about that. The first thing you should do every morning is create an hour-by-hour plan of the things you need to get down and when you will address them. These should typically be in the order of priority. Don’t start with the thing that’s due at the end of the day, that way you don’t get flustered trying to reset when you realize you owe something in 30 minutes you haven’t even started. When making your schedule be sure to include 15-minute breaks so you can come for air. Grab a coffee, stretch, dance, do whatever you need to reenergize yourself!
Get Some Help from the App Store
Whether you’re on a Mac, Windows, or smartphone, there are quite a few apps to help you limit your distractions (regardless of your vice). Freedom doesn’t just block things on one device (a limitation many other apps have) but your settings can work across all your devices. Serene takes it a step further from just blocking distractions but provides a whole system including a timer and music specific for deep focus. So the next you find yourself going on a deep spiral of social media usage at an inopportune time, give one of these apps a try.
Create the Ultimate Productivity Playlist
Music can change the whole trajectory of the day and that’s no different than when you need to focus. While those songs you want to tap your feet to or dance along with are great for energizing you, they can sometimes act as a distraction. Make a playlist of songs that you know well and will keep you on track. As the theme of this year is ‘Precision + Clarity’ we’ve got a playlist full of songs for just that. And if you’re aiming for precise and clear focus then this is just the playlist for you! Check it out here!