The fast modern workplace isn’t always the easiest place in which to find your focus. Open plan offices, the ringing of phones and the pinging of email alerts mean it’s easy to let distractions interrupt your workflow.
If you’re getting frustrated at your lack of progress and your concentration levels need a helping hand, take a look at these seven tips to help you find focus in the fast modern workplace.
7 Tips To Help You Find Focus in the Fast Modern Workplace
Create the Right Workspace
A cluttered desk contains lots of little distractions that take our minds off the task at hand. That dirty coffee cup, disorganized papers, and post-it notes stuck to every possible surface have to go. A clean and tidy desk helps us to think in a more orderly and organized way.
Switch Off Phone Notifications
These days, with so many apps on our smartphones, we have notifications going off every few minutes. Messaging apps, emails, even apps designed to improve your workplace productivity, can all draw your attention away from what you’re supposed to be doing. Switch off notifications or even your phone entirely if you need to dedicate yourself to one particular task.
Don’t Try to Multi-Task
Inevitably, we sometimes need to have a few plates spinning at any one time. But wherever possible, it’s good to avoid multi-tasking. Studies have shown that multi-tasking actually makes us less focused.
So that means shutting down the browser tabs you’re not using, trying to complete one task before moving on to the next and maintaining a comprehensive to-do list for anything that crops up while you’re in the middle of something.
Organise Your Day
Every week and every day of the week, you should reassess your list of priorities and set yourself targets. By having a clear idea of your deadlines and commitments, you’re better placed to organise your workload and work effectively.
Many people also find it helps to get the biggest and most daunting tasks out the way early in the day. That way you don’t spend the first part of the day distracted by concerns and worries about how to tackle them. In addition, once the big task is finally complete, you feel empowered, satisfied, and ready to tackle the remaining smaller tasks quickly, without dilly-dallying.
Use the Right Tools
There are some incredible organisational software tools out there that can help you to organise your time and your workload. When you have access to an easy internal communications system or are able to automate certain processes, it’s much easier to stay focused on the tasks you complete manually.
Ask Yourself Why You’re Doing Each Task
Sometimes a lack of focus stems from a lack of motivation. In order to find your motivation, ask yourself why you’re doing each task before you attempt it. Reminding yourself of the bigger picture and the part your work plays within it can help you to approach your work with renewed focus and dedication.
Even if you have deadlines looming and even if there are never enough hours in the day, taking regular breaks from your work is essential if you’re to maintain your focus. Our brains need to take a break in order to work to their optimum ability. Go make a coffee, get some fresh air, take some time away from screens. You’ll return to your work refreshed and refocused, meaning you’ll be much more productive and effective.
Finding focus in the fast modern workplace is no easy feat. There are lots of distractions we need to ignore. But by creating the right workspace, using the right tools and approaching your work with the right attitude, you can stay focused and achieve your targets.
About the author: Michelle Arios is a Project Manager at BizDb.co.nz – an online database containing information about businesses and companies. Working within numerous teams and with different people has taught Michelle the value of proper communication and focus, which she now shares with others. Feel free to reach out to her on @MichelleArios.