Being efficient in organizing your work is an essential aspect of productivity. Writing to-do lists, creating calendars and scheduling all your appointments, meetings & making reminders - that's all part of the game, and it helps you optimize your working process while making you less stressed out since you don't have to keep everything in your head.
However, all of that still doesn't guarantee you'll actually sit still for a certain period and get work done. So the second step after organizing your work is to get in the flow and complete the tasks that are waiting for you. Focus is probably still the number one thing when it comes to one's productivity.
Below we share 4 ways to a razor-sharp focusthat will enable you to get work done correctly and in a shorter time.
Basically, we live in a world of distractions. Constant new messages, e-mails, notifications from social media, new tasks, and information are something nearly normal.
We can quickly lose focus, or we try to multitask and handle everything together. But then even though you spend the whole day working, at the end of it, there's a feeling that you haven't accomplished anything properly.
So, there are two ways to deal with distractions.
First, you can try and eliminate or avoid distractions. The best way to start is to choose your working environment and identifying the potential distractions that can come your way so every phone ring in the next room will not get you off the track.
We know it's tempting to have all notifications turned on. You think you have better control over the situation this way. Well, either how, there are still notifications that are controlling you.
Think about answering your e-mails and messages at a scheduled time - for example, before going to lunch or after it. In the meantime, don't reply to them. The only "cheat thing" you can do is take a glimpse of a mail subject, and if it's really urgent, you can go ahead and reply to it, otherwise let it be.
When working, use earplugs if needed or headphones & listen to some focus music that will drift you off to a smooth flow.
A second way on how you can deal with distractions is to embrace them. You'd probably been in a situation where you couldn't avoid a particular distraction. There was a construction site right next to your house/office or just some noises and events that you couldn't avoid.
While we can turn off the notifications on our phones and laptops, we cannot turn off the construction site.
Embracing the distractions that are not in our control and still be able to focus & get work done is the next level thing.
It's about not resisting the situation that is going on. We cannot control the noises, but we can control our reaction to it.
Start out small. Open your window and let the noises be. Without the earplugs or headphones or whatever. Let the sounds from outside come in.
While it can be challenging in the beginning, when you gain that skill to let the noises get through you without you analyzing them, you can really work in total chaos and still get work done.
So, you have two ways to deal with the modern world. Which is going to be today?
Identify what results you want to achieve when starting with a specific task. For example, if you're writing an article, first think about the content you want to write about, the headings, etc.
The second thing to keep in mind is - don't write shallow or too general tasks on your to-do list.
Instead of "Make a new landing page," the task should be divided into smaller tasks, so you'll know exactly what steps to take.
This way, it will be easier for you to determine how long the task will take to be completed & you won't be out of your flow every 5 minutes because you'll have to think about what you have to do next.
We often talk about the importance of creating deadlines for our tasks. That's mainly because deadlines create urgency for our minds, make us forget what's not essential, and get us in the flow faster.
A deadline helps with procrastination and completing the tasks that should be done in a day but could be extended for a whole week of work because we cannot get in the flow soon enough.
However, you have to be real with yourself when setting deadlines. Too short periods can result in you worrying about how little time you have left instead of focusing on the work itself.
In conclusion, deadlines can get you in the flow, but they have to be realistic and consistent.
You cannot focus on your tasks if you sleep for 3 hours per night, eating junk food and drink unlimited amounts of coffee a day. We take our eating and sleeping habits for granted a lot of times. But it’s important to optimize them - for the sake of our health, productivity and overall well-being.
Unhealthy habits not only harm your body, but they also harm your mind. They cause brain fog, inability to stay focused on the task; there's a bigger chance of errors and a smaller chance of actually succeeding in what you're doing in the long term.
Head Of Nutrition At STAQ Performance
Maja Andoljsek, BSc in Sports Science and Nutrition, has been researching nutrition, supplements, and coaching people for years. As a certified coach and nutritionist, she has helped hundreds of people improve their cognitive performance, physical performance, and overall health.