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How to be More Focused at Work

Brian Tracy, Motivational Speaker

If there’s one thing that the modern era has brought into the workplace, it’s an unlimited source of distractions. Staying focused and motivated at work seems to always be a struggle for many people. Today, though, in a world where an infinite number of distractions are a few clicks or swipes of your smartphone away. Staying focused at work is now more difficult than ever before.

The good news, however, is that there are ways to dramatically improve your focus, productivity, and motivation even in today’s distraction-filled world.

If you would like to become more focused and productive at work, follow these five useful tips.


Try to limit online interruptions

When used correctly, the internet can be an incredibly powerful tool in the workplace. Of course, the internet can also be a bottomless pit of distractions that can drain your time minute by minute. With so many jobs requiring you to spend part of the day working online, simply unplugging the wifi isn’t an option for many people. But… When you can it is incredibly beneficial to unplug and focus solely on the task at hand. Simply muting your notifications and closing out your browser for a period of time each day can go a long way toward boosting your focus and productivity


Create designated time for meetings

Meetings and conferences are obviously an important part of the workday for many professionals. If you’ve ever been focused on completing a task only to have your motivation and productivity derailed by a meeting then you know how much of an interruption to your progress these meetings can sometimes be. Since meetings tend to interrupt focus and progress, it’s much better to schedule all of your meetings at a designated time rather than allowing them to continually interrupt your work at random intervals throughout the day.


Schedule daily focus hours

It takes time to really get into the groove of focusing all your attention and effort on a single task. In many cases, you won’t start doing your best work on a task until you have had the chance to sit down and focus on it for an extended period of time. This means that even one interruption to your progress can force you to start the process of honing in on a task and getting into your most productive groove all over again. In the same way that meetings are able to interrupt focus, anything that draws your attention away from your work for even a brief period of time can end up having a serious impact on your productivity. Scheduling daily focus hours where you isolate yourself entirely from distractions and focus only on a single, important task can be a powerful way to ensure that you are able to get into the flow of your work and produce results without interruptions.


Try to set time limits for tasks

Few things are more motivating than a deadline, even when you set that deadline yourself. Simply placing a limit on how long it should take you to complete a task can provide you with a sense of urgency that will bolster your focus and motivation and give the task a feeling of importance that you might have not otherwise felt about the task at hand.


Remember to take short breaks

Taking breaks from work in order to improve focus and productivity may sound counterintuitive. And it is true that breaks can interrupt your progress in the same way that a meeting or other distraction might. When scheduled properly, though, short breaks from work can provide you with a mental refresh that will allow you to reset your focus and come at the task again with renewed motivation. In the end, few people can work an entire eight hours without stopping and be expected to do their best work the entire way. You can certainly force yourself to power through without taking any breaks, but doing so often can cause more harm than good. Rather than spending so much time focused on a task that your mind begins to tire or grow bored, schedule short breaks throughout the day to re-energize and reset your focus. These breaks can be as simple as a quick walk outside for a breath of fresh air or a trip to the water cooler for a cup of water, as just a few minutes spent away from work is typically all that is required to hit the mental reset button.



What distractions do you face at work?


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