How To Stay Focused On Work: 6 Simple Tips
For most of us, staying focused while working is pretty difficult, even at the best of times. In today’s workplace, it’s even harder than ever – with so much information coming at us constantly, and easy access to the internet, staying focused on tasks can seem like asking the impossible.
Fortunately, there are ways to make things easier. Some of them are obvious, others less so. Either way, if you try and put the following suggestions into practice, you should find staying focused easier and be able to get more done.
Remove Distractions From Your Computer: If you have lots of games on your computer, or lots of photos and videos, get rid of them. This removes the temptation to “take a quick break” and entertain yourself for a few minutes – which often leads to hours! Another way to control distraction is to close the programs that you aren’t using for the task at hand. This reduces the likelihood that you’ll distract yourself with other tasks of less importance.
Make Lists: One simple way of staying focused is to start your day by making a list of things you have to do. This helps you to keep track of tasks and reminds you that spending too much time doing other things could result in you not finishing all the tasks on the list.
It’s also helpful to update the list as the day goes on. Cross off the tasks you’ve completed, and add new tasks which come up during the day. This can help you to keep on top of your work.
Keep Drinks At Your Workspace: One of the most common ways of distracting ourselves when we should be working is by going for a coffee or snack break. By keeping a bottle of water by your desk, or a flask of coffee, you can avoid the temptation to get up from the desk when you should really be working.
It's also possible to use coffee and snack breaks to your advantage, though. After a long and productive session of work, moving away from your workspace for a few minutes to refresh helps you maintain focus on the rest of the tasks ahead.
Get A Good Desk And Chair: If you aren’t sitting comfortably, then the chances are you’re not going to be able to stay focused. Not only that, but your health could be at risk. Make sure you get a good chair and a desk at the right height for you. Your back should be straight, not slouched, while you sit at your desk.
Music: If you like listening to music while you work, make sure you pick the tunes that don’t get you over-excited. If you're listening to music that just makes you want to get up and dance or sing along, then you’re not going to be able to stay focused very easily. Pick music that you enjoy having in the background. Save the rest for your free time!
Start The Working Day Right: When you get to your desk at the start of the working day, don’t make your first task checking the news on the internet, or looking for updates on your favorite blogs. Once you get in the mood for entertainment like that, it’s hard to return to a working mindset.
3 Ways To Get Your Creative Juices Flowing
Whether for leisure or for business, many of us wish we were more creative. For some, creativity feels new, while others will feel they are rediscovering a lost creativity. Whichever camp you fall into, the following ideas can help get your creativity flowing.
1) Break Your Habits: Over time we all develop habits and routines. These can be anything from how we brush our teeth to how we make our coffee, or how we write our emails.
Habits are useful because they save us time, and by keeping things simple they also save us energy. However, the flip-side of habits is that they can reduce creativity.
Breaking up habits and routines, even the most mundane kinds of habits and routines, helps to reinvigorate our minds. Having a routine means not having to think about that activity very much.
Breaking a routine means having to think about it again. By breaking a routine we break up our set ways of thinking, allowing us to come up with new approaches to the same old thing.
The great thing is that even by breaking up a simple routine, we put ourselves in a slightly less predictable mindset. By doing this, we open ourselves up to more creative ways of thinking.
It may seem strange to think that changing which wrist you usually put your watch on can make you think more creatively, you might be surprised by the results if you give it a go.
The trick to keeping yourself in that creative mindset is not to allow a new routine to replace the old one.
If you start wearing your watch on your right wrist because you always used to wear it on your left, don’t continue to wear it on your right wrist forever.
Switch from one wrist to the other every few days, or try not wearing it at all. Simple things like this can help to keep your mind in a more creative frame.
2) Invent Simple Brainstorming Games: Brainstorming is a very common way of coming up with ideas, but it's usually done in the same familiar way: one idea is written in the middle of the page, and then we think of spin-off ideas that we then write in various places around the central idea.
There’s nothing wrong with this approach in itself. The only thing that’s wrong is when you use this approach and nothing else.
Instead of doing a brainstorm in the traditional way, it’s easy to come up with simple rules for your own brainstorming games.
For example, you could do a word association brainstorm where each new word has to start with the last letter of the previous word, or you could limit yourself to words of eight letters or more.
Such simple ideas may seem silly, but they are practical ways of generating unexpected new thoughts.
By not allowing yourself to come up with the most obvious responses or answers you force yourself to think more creatively, breaking out of your usual thought processes.
3) Write All Of Your Ideas Down: Often after we come up with new ideas, we forget about them or even throw them away when we think they’re no good.
Whatever you do, don’t throw anything away! Instead, get a notepad and keep all of your ideas in it.
After a short while you’ll have quite a lot of ideas written down in your notepad – some of them you might think are bad and others good, but this doesn’t matter.
Once you have a few pages of ideas going back a little while, you can start to go through your notepad from time to time and re-read your old ideas. When returning to old ideas you bring new perspectives.
These new perspectives can allow you to take your old ideas in new and unexpected directions. In this way it’s possible to turn useless old ideas into useful new ones simply by letting time pass! Give it a go and see what results you get.
Learn more about procrastination bad habits when you read the rest of our information here about: How to stop procrastinating right now
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