Focus, Focus, Focus – How NOT to get distracted“It’s a beautiful summer day. Where’s the coffee? We have to finish that launch plan. Did we do back-to-school shopping yet? Oh, we need another white paper in time for the conference. Is that a new person in accounting? They seem nice. How do we make our product better, faster and stronger? Ok, that conference, what’s the plan? We really should get one of those auto-wash companies to come right to the office. Here’s the copy for the new blog post. Geez, the dog has what?? Wait, back to the conference. What’s the plan?” It’s just a typical day inside the mind of a typical employee. It’s crowded right? Crowded with thoughts, details, to-do’s, personal crisis’ and a laundry list of shiny-pretty distractions. Focusing has become a lost art. Yes, we think there’s an art to focusing right. And here are a few of our favorite tips.
- Find what you – and your employees – do inspiring and fun
Any meaningful task or routine is going to require some serious focus. But before starting anything, ask yourself why you should do it. Your answer, that being the final output, will help you validate the value the task. Then find ways for the work to become fun, like allowing your creativity and imagination to play in the process. Don’t stick within borders of “approved” output; have your options opened for new, fun ideas. Bottom line: When you make something you can call your own, you’re more likely to stay focused at work.
- Set clear goals
Instead of saying, “I’m going to write this plan or proposal for the next eight hours,” make a list of your top priorities for the week. This helps you avoid reacting to every distraction that comes up. Review your list each morning and decide—realistically—what tasks you can accomplish that day. Be concrete: “I’m going to finish steps 1-3 of the project by noon.” Work in 60-90-minute blocks: As we work, our alertness drops off, increasing the lure of distractions. Set a timer and take a break at the end of each cycle. Reset your focus by listening to music for a few minutes, taking a short walk, or going for lunch.
- Use technology to your advantage
From blocking out distracting websites to tracking how much time you spend surfing the web, many apps can actually help you stay focused. Once you identify what your habits are, pick one that will help you meet your goals, but don’t let these become distractions in themselves. We do think that PoPin can help. It helps teams prioritize and focus on the most critical and necessary.