Useful Tips

How to stop being distracted and focus on business

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Do not be distracted during working hours by personal affairs and conversations. In addition to the time that you spend viewing a foreign site or talking with a friend on the phone, there are expenses for re-inclusion in the work process.

Yes, work breaks need to be done, but at a time allotted for this purpose. Do not interrupt constantly during an important process. Otherwise, then you may not have time to deliver the project on time and without errors.

Try to leave personal problems behind your doorstep. Understand that you need to do this for your own good. Discussion of non-working moments knocks down the labor mood and dampens. Then it will be difficult for you to get involved in the work and return to your immediate responsibilities.

Distracting colleagues

Distracting at work may not even be extraneous matters. Sometimes during the performance of a complex, voluminous task, a colleague or leader asks a question, sort of related to your work responsibilities, but at the moment completely superfluous.

Despite the large amount of work and the noisy environment, you can learn how to distribute your work so as not to be distracted from important matters. If you are not sure that in the near future you will be able to work in a state of concentration, do not tackle something laborious.

In the atmosphere, when at any moment you may be disturbed, it is preferable to perform small tasks that do not require a high degree of concentration. So you will not stand still, and will not suffer from circumstances.

Plan

Record all the things you need to complete. Otherwise, in an emergency you may forget about some task. It is important to assign to each item from the list of forthcoming work the degree of criticality and urgency.

Remember to check your to-do list from time to time. If possible, set yourself a reminder - a signal on the phone, a pop-up task in the organizer, on the computer, or just a note on a sticker.

Distribute cases by time of day. For example, in the morning and evening, when you are guaranteed peace and quiet, it is better to perform the most difficult work. And during the day, when colleagues, partners or clients, for example, can distract you, do short tasks.

Non-urgent and unimportant matters, for example, sending correspondence or checking mail, try to do in the so-called batch mode. That is, instead of being distracted every hour by sending someone a fax, you can collect several documents in half a day, and then send them all at once.

The content of the article

  • How not to be distracted from work
  • How to choose a job in 2017
  • How to reduce noise

Time absorbers

Do not be distracted during working hours by personal affairs and conversations. In addition to the time that you spend viewing a foreign site or talking with a friend on the phone, there are expenses for re-inclusion in the work process.

Yes, work breaks need to be done, but at a time allotted for this purpose. Do not interrupt constantly during an important process. Otherwise, then you may not have time to deliver the project on time and without errors.

Try to leave personal problems behind your doorstep. Understand that you need to do this for your own good. Discussion of non-working moments knocks down the labor mood and dampens. Then it will be difficult for you to get involved in the work and return to your immediate responsibilities.

Distracting colleagues

Distracting at work may not even be extraneous matters. Sometimes during the performance of a complex, voluminous task, a colleague or leader asks a question, sort of related to your work responsibilities, but at the moment completely superfluous.

Despite the large amount of work and the noisy environment, you can learn how to distribute your work so as not to be distracted from important matters. If you are not sure that in the near future you will be able to work in a state of concentration, do not tackle something laborious.

In the atmosphere, when at any moment you may be disturbed, it is preferable to perform small tasks that do not require a high degree of concentration. So you will not stand still, and will not suffer from circumstances.

Plan

Record all the things you need to complete. Otherwise, in an emergency you may forget about some task. It is important to assign to each item from the list of forthcoming work the degree of criticality and urgency.

Remember to check your to-do list from time to time. If possible, set yourself a reminder - a signal on the phone, a pop-up task in the organizer, on the computer, or just a note on a sticker.

Distribute cases by time of day. For example, in the morning and evening, when you are guaranteed peace and quiet, it is better to perform the most difficult work. And during the day, when colleagues, partners or clients, for example, can distract you, do short tasks.

Non-urgent and unimportant matters, for example, sending correspondence or checking mail, try to do in the so-called batch mode. That is, instead of being distracted every hour by sending someone a fax, you can collect several documents in half a day, and then send them all at once.

Tip 2: How to concentrate on an important assignment

Tip 3: How to focus on one thing

The content of the article

Make a plan

A variety of worries and plans often force a person to rush to perform all tasks at the same time. Such behavior can so exhaust a person that in the end there will be no strength left for anything. In reality, almost no one succeeds in being Julius Caesar. In order not to get to a nervous breakdown or physical exhaustion, you need to learn how to correctly plan your immediate future, and as they say, solve problems as they become available. Make a detailed list of all your responsibilities and plans. For each item, consider the required deadlines.

Delegate authority

Pay attention to what work you can safely delegate to someone else. A busy person is overloaded with responsibilities and as a result of his over responsibility does not allow to let the situation go by its own. Nevertheless, it is necessary to rationally distribute the load and be able to solve a simple question to trust your loved ones or subordinates. Determine what others can do for you and delegate their authority to them. So in your to-do list there will be not so many unresolved issues. Only those with whom no one can cope better than you will remain on the agenda.

Prioritize

Read the list carefully again and review all your plans. Pay attention to the urgency of each item and the importance of its implementation. Carefully analyze the situation and identify priority and priority tasks. Arrange their order in descending order. Separately, write on the sheet the nearest goal and the acceptable deadlines for its implementation, and keep the list of your other tasks away. Now you have one specific goal and nothing distracts attention from its achievement. When a person has plans and there is no concern about the importance of doing something else, then his actions will be practical and effective.

Tip 4: How to Stop Being Distracted at Work

Most likely, many noticed that they could not fully concentrate on any work or tasks. However, there are no obvious reasons for this. But work is slow and often not completed on time. But it turns out that there are many distracting factors that we simply don’t notice. How to get rid of them and start working productively.

Distracting factors from work

1. Social networks

Avoid entering social networks while you work. Most people don’t even notice that they are constantly checking their page, while losing their concentration on work, and besides posts, they’re looking at various posts. If you can not help it, then turn off the Internet.

2. Email

Another distraction is e-mail, as many people constantly check it, and this slows down the work. Allocate a certain time in your schedule for replies to letters, so that you do not get distracted from ongoing projects.

3. Mobile phone

The sound of a phone call can distract you from your tasks and take you out of work for a long time. If you do not have urgent calls, turn off the phone and turn on voicemail.

4. Multitasking

If you do many different tasks at the same time, it may happen that you do nothing. In this case, the correct allocation of time and a work plan will help you.

5. Boredom

This is the most dangerous factor. If you are bored, then you will begin to be distracted by all third-party factors, such as the Internet, phone and much more. Try to choose interesting tasks or set incentives for yourself. For example, if you complete a project well, buy a thing that you have long wanted.

6. Extraneous thoughts

If you think about yesterday’s quarrel or what you need to pay for the apartment, then you will definitely not focus on work and most likely you will do the project for a long time. If it’s hard to focus and drop thoughts. Write them down. For example, write down your day or make a to-do list.

7. Stress

Each of us, at least once in our life, was stressed. At such moments, it is very difficult to concentrate and devote oneself to work. Stress has a strong effect on the body. In this case, you need to relax. Engage in breathing exercises, drink soothing herbal tea, relax a bit, and then get to work.

8. Fatigue

Fatigue can be a big problem in order to focus, even when you do not have distractions. Studies show that lack of sleep can significantly affect your memory. In order to work productively, be sure to get enough sleep.

9. Hunger

If you are hungry, then you won’t be able to work normally. Because your thoughts will be filled with only one desire. In order to prevent this from happening at the most crucial moment, you need to monitor your diet. In this case, be sure to have breakfast. Have snacks, but not with fast carbohydrates, but with slow ones, for example, nuts, granola.

Right actions

Very often, the right path is more difficult than the easy one, but in fact, on the easy path, we simply don’t notice the “pitfalls” at once, and as a result we end up with a fiasco. But this principle applies not only to big events, but also to the daily necessities of choosing: praise a partner or criticize, get up on the alarm clock immediately or sleep “for another 5 minutes,” listen to the interlocutor or arrange a monologue. By doing the right thing, you live every day as productively as possible.

Tip 6: Avoiding distractions while surfing the web

Many sites and programs in one way or another try to attract our attention, and sometimes this does not play into our hands. However, there are ways that will surely help resist the temptation to look “wrong way”.

1) Hide the taskbar. The advice is quite simple, but, as the worldly wisdom says, out of sight, out of mind. In this case, removing such interesting, but useless sites from the field of view, you will protect yourself and do not succumb to the urge to open an unnecessary tab.

2) Mute all im clients and chats. Better just turn off the sound on the computer. Extraneous sounds can be very distracting, fueling the curiosity of who wrote what.

3) Minimize unused applications and windows. Better they quietly wait for their turn, hiding, than callousing your eyes, sitting right behind your working window.

4) Highlight the active window. There are special programs for this: DropCloth for Windows and Isolator for Mac. They will leave bright only your working window, and all the others will be obscured.

5) Isolate web applications. Let only one application (currently used by you for work) be connected to the Internet.

6) Simplify Word. Try Google Docs instead.

7) Avoid junk mail. Review which newsletters you have subscribed to, and cancel useless subscriptions.

8) Configure your IM client. If you indicate that only messages from users of the contact list are not spam, the rest of the information slag will pass you by.

9) Limit access to individual sites. For this, there are applications and special browser extensions. Focusing on work will greatly increase your productivity.

Tip 7: Making Yourself Focus on Work

Morning work-out.Scientists have long proved that physical activity in the morning energizes a person, is the key to a good mood. All this inevitably leads to success in business, the quick resolution of everyday tasks.

No sugar.There is a misconception that chocolate and other sweets give a person energy. Alas, this wave of vigor will soon subside, and the body will become sluggish. A great alternative can be nuts - a rich source of protein, and, therefore, energy.

Breath of fresh air.If you feel that you are falling asleep at your desk, get up and leave the office for a few minutes. Sunlight, fresh air will surely charge you with energy. It will also serve as a kind of meditation for you, put your thoughts in order. If it is impossible to leave the office, open the window and just watch passers-by, refresh yourself, drink a cup of tea with lemon and berries.

Rearrangement.Try changing the position of your desktop. Put it closer to the window, for example. Or just castling things on it, change the desktop image. During the permutation, you will move, thereby cheer up. And updating the workplace will cheer you up.

Music.Another way to force yourself to focus on work can be listening to music. It activates the parts of the brain that are responsible for mood. Favorite rhythms can keep you awake all day. And classical (instrumental) music is even able to increase concentration.

Caffeine.If all methods have been tried, but there is no result, you can go to extreme measures. Caffeine has a temporary effect, but is accurate. Just do not overdo it. Since the main component of coffee drinks negatively affects the human nervous system.

If your work isn’t related to the office, then a little shake might be the best way to focus. Wash your face with cold water, shake your head slightly, shout if possible, or simply make a face in your mirror. Such an unexpected discharge will raise the mood and tone to the working level.

Why are we constantly distracted

Full immersion in work involves focusing on complex tasks for a long period of time.

But we do have internet. And as soon as we are faced with a really difficult task that needs to be dealt with closely, there is immediately a temptation to switch to another tab and see if we missed something interesting.

Despite the fact that we have had the Internet for quite some time, we have not developed immunity to its distracting effects.

Social networks and applications use the same technique as slot machines - variative reinforcement. When we update our Twitter or Facebook feed or check our mail for the hundredth time, we don’t know what we’ll get: interesting news, a lot of rubbish or nothing at all. But the unpredictability of the result forces us to refresh the page again and again. A habit gradually develops and addiction arises.

How not to be distracted at home and on the street

  • Remove social networking apps from your phone. If necessary, they can be accessed through a mobile browser, but this is inconvenient, which means you will do it less often.
  • Do not take the phone to the toilet. Funny, but it saves a lot of time.
  • Keep your phone away from the bed. If you already went to bed, then sleep, but do not check your mail.
  • Do not carry the phone in your pocket, but in your bag or backpack. So it will be more difficult for you to get it.

How not to be distracted at work

  • If you use a Chrome browser, install Timewarp. In it, you can configure the time counter for the selected sites and see how much time you spend on them.
  • Switch your phone to Do Not Disturb and remove it from the table.
  • Open windows in full screen mode.
  • Hide your browser bookmarks bar.
  • Close the mail client and open it only at the specially allotted time for this.
  • Listen to classical or modern instrumental music.

In addition, there are many useful extensions for Chrome that you might find useful. For example, Inbox When Ready hides your inbox, and you can write a message without being distracted by new mail. News Feed Eradicator hides the Facebook news feed and slip a motivating quote in its place. Or Forest, which grows a virtual tree when you work, and mercilessly kills it if you go to sites from the black list.

How to tune in to thoughtful work

  • Make a work plan in advance. When the time comes to sit down and take up the task closely, it will be much easier for you not to be distracted by following the points of the plan.
  • Show interest in the task. Going headlong into an interesting and important project is easier and more enjoyable than into one that doesn’t matter to you.

During the work on this material not a single social network was opened. В результате работа над статьёй заняла на треть меньше времени, чем обычно.

Разгрузите мозг

Для того чтобы научиться концентрироваться на текущих проблемах, нужно для начала разгрузить мозг от множества других задач, которые мы держим в голове все одновременно. Among them there may be global tasks such as “compiling an annual report”, or small ones, for example, “buying coffee grains for a coffee machine”, “making an appointment with a doctor”, “finding a good tutor for a child”. So, first of all, write down all your tasks on a piece of paper and clearly write out what and when you will perform. You must completely free the “RAM” of your brain in order to concentrate on your immediate goal.

Create a structure

Imagine what would happen to our body if we did not have a skeleton? It would turn into a shapeless piece of flesh. In the same way with our thoughts and goals: if they do not have an exact structure, for us it becomes unbearable. That is why it is imperative to have a daily planner and plan everything. When we paint our tasks and prioritize, we get the feeling that we can control our lives. Do you know what is the easiest way to create a structure? Do the cleaning. It is guaranteed that it will be easier for you to focus on your tasks if there is cleanliness and order around you.

Learn to say no

It is important for those who don’t know how or are afraid to refuse people: you really do a good deed to the petitioner with your decisive “no”. After all, if we help a person only because of the inability to refuse, then this help is unlikely to be 100% high-quality. If a colleague wants to hang another extracurricular work on you, just tell him: “I will think it over” or: “I would gladly fulfill your request if I had time, but, unfortunately, the situation is such that I cannot do the work is quite high quality and fast. ”

Get rid of electronic slavery

Allocate time in your daily routine that you will spend outside of electronic devices and tell your colleagues what time you will be unavailable. Call more often, but don’t write to the people you promised to contact: live communication gives you more emotions. Make a list of not-so-big things that your hands won’t reach. For example, call an old friend, open the book that you bought 7 months ago, or get to the top shelf of the cabinet and take it apart. Check this list (and not the phone) whenever you have a free minute.

Focus here and now

  • Turn off all appliances and gadgets for the time you need in order to focus and think.
  • Trust yourself. We deal best with something when we do it as we see fit. If you don’t know what you want, just listen to your intuition, and your subconscious will most likely lead you in the right direction.
  • Take a break. If you feel your thoughts begin to get confused, stop and give yourself a break. Get up, walk, drink a glass of water, stretch. 60 seconds can sometimes be enough for rest.
  • Grasp something difficult. People concentrate as much as possible, accepting the challenge when the business is familiar, but it makes you strain all your strength. Quite often, the impossible suddenly turns out to be quite real.
  • Get help. Do not consider this a sign of weakness. On the contrary, such a decision says that you still have enough strength not to get confused and try to find the right path.
  • Take care of your time. One of the surest rules of modern life is that if you cannot manage the time correctly, it will be taken from you. Jealously guard your time. Do not give it to anyone, and do not let anyone dispose of it unless there is a great need for it.
  • Close your eyes. If you feel that you have lost focus, sit back and close your eyes. Surprisingly, this simple action helps restore clarity of vision.
  • Draw a picture. Visual images free thinking. Draw a chart, make a table, cover the page with whimsical zigzags, write some short phrases on it, or draw arrows. It is best to use colored pencils or felt-tip pens for this. It is possible that soon you will imagine exactly what you were looking for in a state of increased concentration.
  • Talk to yourself. If you suddenly missed the thread of thought and were at a loss, try to speculate out loud about the subject that you are doing. Loud speech draws into thinking new areas of the brain that are not involved in reasoning “to oneself”. Your voice will scatter the fog.
  • Do what helps you. Do not think about the strategies that are commonly used. Some people work well with music or in a noisy environment. Someone focuses better when walking and even running. One thinks better early in the morning, and the other late in the night. Some people prefer to think in the cold, while others in the Finnish sauna. Someone thinks well of an empty stomach, someone - while eating. There are no right ways - there are ways that are best for you.

For more tips on staying alert, focused, and doing more, read Don't Distract Me!

Edward M. Hallowell is a psychiatrist, a world-renowned expert on ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), and the author of several bestselling books by The New York Times. Graduate of Harvard College and the Medical School of Tulane University in New Orleans. Founder of The Hallowell Center. He worked at Harvard Medical School from 1983 to 2004, giving lectures around the world on attention deficit disorder and the modern rhythm of life. Since the release of his book “Driven to Distraction” in 1994, more than a million copies have been sold.

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