You’ve got a to-do list that never seems to get shorter, and it’s hard to concentrate when distractions are sapping your productivity. Here are a few tips to hone your focus and get control of your workload.
Set Your Status
Make colleagues aware of your schedule and what you’re doing. If you’re doubling down on difficult tasks, tell them you’re off limits and need space to focus. Likewise, keep yourself out of range when it comes to calls and emails, avoiding personal calls and messages unless they’re urgent. Set your work’s instant messaging status to ‘busy’ or ‘away’ until you have the ability to answer messages without them impeding your work.
Prioritise Your To-Do List
Try to get the most pressing and frustrating tasks done out of the way first; otherwise you’ll be subconsciously stressing over them, especially if they still haven’t been done by the end of the day. Undertake less urgent tasks next, and then more boring routine ones requiring less energy can come last. As for social media, steer clear of this low-priority sucker of time and emotion until you’re done with work tasks.
Empirical studies are finding that meditation can benefit personal wellbeing, mental health, workplace satisfaction, focus and innovation. Visualisation with meditation breaks in between your tasks can boost memory and productivity.
Streamline Your Approach
An organised inbox can free up a little brain space, so keep work and personal emails on separate accounts. Sort emails into folders, pin and flag urgent or frequently viewed emails, employ automatic keyword filtering, delete everything not required and unsubscribe from unwanted newsletters. Use computing shortcuts and productivity software to make life easier and tasks quicker, like PDF to Excel conversion from https://pdftables.com/convert-pdf-to-excel.
Set Phone Rules
If you’re getting a shout across the room or a knock on your door every five minutes for a new call, ask for all calls to be noted on post-its and given to you when you request them. Make all call-backs between task intervals, explaining that appreciate their concerns or requests and will follow up fully when you can, giving a timeframe if possible.
Pick the tracks boost your productivity, be that soothing or energising music, and use your headphones. It’ll help reduce external distractions while keeping your mind sharp and focused.