Staying focused on one thing for longer than 20 minutes is difficult, especially if you’re one of the 56 percent of Americans using a smart phone. On any given day, you’ll be receiving a myriad of emails, texts, tasks, phone calls, etc. At times the mound of work piled on your desk (or inbox) can be overwhelming, and prioritizing tasks seems to be a job in itself. Add multiple clients to your workload and the need to stay informed on industry news, and you have yourself a challenge. Sometimes just imagining the day ahead is enough to cause the mind to stray to another universe, or at least to take 15 quizzes on Buzzfeed. This blog post is designed to help you stay focused and get things done during your workday.
1. Get rid of the clutter.
A clear mind starts with a clear desk. Fewer things scattered on your desk means that you’ll have less distractions. Plus, if you organize your area, you can spend less time looking for what you need.
2. Prioritize your planner.
Writing out your to-dos in a portable planner is always helpful to keep you informed on your week. If you feel as if you have too much on your plate, number your tasks in order of importance. This will help you finish what you need to accomplish, while easing unnecessary worries about things that can wait.
3. Set times when you are allowed to check email.
Constantly checking your inbox takes away from the task at hand. It might be best to only check email at certain times of the day, or once every hour. This will help to shorten the amount of time spent distracted from the project you’re working on.
5. Eat brain healthy snacks.
Foregoing food will leave you exhausted at your desk, while snacking on junk food won’t satisfy your hunger either. Make sure to eat breakfast and keep healthy snacks close by. We love Green Plate Foods’ yummy Nubblers (one of our favorites is the cherry chocolate flavor).
6. Reward yourself.
Set small rewards for yourself after you’ve completed some tasks that have been extra difficult or involved. Try things like treating yourself to a new cup of coffee after you finish a task, or checking Instagram after finishing a report. Set time limits for social media breaks so that you don’t go overboard liking photos on Facebook. Small breaks help ease tension and exhaustion, but shouldn’t cause you to fall behind on work. After a particularly hard week, allow yourself the time to do something fun, like seeing a movie at Alamo Drafthouse Cinema or enjoying live music at Armadillo Palace.
What helps you stay focused at work?