Sometimes it could be quite difficult to stay focused during all working day. There could be numerous reasons for that – urgent emails, short phone calls, quick updates in social networks and so on. You’d probably deal with such distractions on a daily basis. Learning how to minimize distractions can dramatically increase your productivity and effectiveness, as well as reduce your stress. So check the blog post to find out how to minimize or eliminate the distractions and to stay focused all day long.
These are some basic tips to stay concentrated during the working day:
1. Schedule your day and make a to-do-list
We all have certain hours of the day, during which we show the highest productivity and efficiency. Most of us have such hours in the morning and after lunch. So schedule your most important tasks for these hours to get yourself the best advantage. Also it’s a good idea to have a to-do-list for the day. It can help you prioritize the tasks and to see a clear outline of your completed and uncompleted tasks, which can keep you focused as we tend to remember more uncompleted than completed work.
2. Minimize multitasking
Scientists found that we waste about 20-40% of our working time doing multitasking. The study made by the researchers of the University of London has found that multi-tasking can temporarily decrease our IQ by 15 points. So the scientists suggest to focus on one task at a time, and have 20 minutes to complete a task before moving to another one.
3. Use full screen and AdBlock
To continue the previous point, we are not so good at multitasking as we think we are. So when you really need to be focused, try to block all the distractions on your screen if possible. You can use a distraction-free tool like Q10 that goes full screen and if you are using two screens, and it’s impossible then at least to get rid of extra icons and windows. Also it’s a good idea to install the AdBlock that blocks annoying ads in your browser.
4. Exercise regularly
Try to keep yourself in a good fit. Scientists say that regular exercising can help ones stimulate releasing of useful chemicals in their brain which improve memory, functioning and increases focus capacity. In fact, one study has shown that exercising in the middle of the day can make you feel more energetic and productive for the rest of the day.
5. Try some caffeine
The studies suggest that some caffeine in coffee and tea in reasonable doses may help to boost focus especially for those ones who are feeling sleepy at the beginning and at the end of the working day. It is also proven that it increases a short-term memory and accuracy of reactions as well as the ability to focus attention.
6. Take breaks
Some studies show that taking regular breaks from mental tasks improves productivity and creativity and that skipping breaks can lead to stress and exhaustion. It’s a good idea to take 10 minutes break in every working hour, so you can play ping pong, or check the updates in social networks, or even go for a quick walk.
7. Train the brain
No matter how well you block or avoid most distractions, your own brain can be your worst enemy. So if your brain jumps from thought to thought when you have work to do, then you need to learn how to control it. It may sound silly but regular meditation can help you with concentrating and focusing on other activities.
8. Get a good night’s sleep
The research by The Sleep School in London shows that a single bad night’s sleep can reduce productivity by 57% and decrease physical and mental awareness. While the average recommendation for a good night’s sleep is from seven to eight hours, it can range from four to twelve hours per individual.
9. Follow the 20-20-20 rule
After hours spent looking at a screen, our eyes can get really tired and can’t get focused. So many ophthalmologists recommend following the simple rule: to take a look at a distant object at least 200 feet away for 20 seconds every 20 minutes.
10. Don’t go overboard: distractions are a part of good productivity
Don’t be too obsessed with the distractions. Actually distraction and procrastination are vital for healthy living, and can even encourage creative thinking. Studies have even shown that browsing the web at work can make you more productive – just it should be done at the right times.