How to stay more focused?
Many of the goals you will set in life will take some time to achieve. If you want to achieve them in the most effective manner, you must learn to make the most of each day. To make the most of each day, you must learn to stay focused throughout the day. Your ability to focus has a great influence on your ability to manage your time effectively. As there are so many things competing for your attention on the average day, learning to stay focused requires time commitment and effort. However, once you have learned to stay focused throughout the day, the improvements in the quality and quantity of your results can be quite dramatic.
8 Tips to stay focused throughout the day
Here are 8 habits that, when applied correctly, will help you to greatly improve your focus until, eventually; you are able to stay productive throughout the day.
1. Understand that your energy fluctuates
When I started in the work place, one of the first pieces of time management advice that I got was to work at an even pace throughout the day. There is a major problem with this; your physical and mental energy levels do not flow evenly throughout the day. They experience peaks and troughs e.g. at the start of the day, I have high energy levels; but as I approach lunch and, just after, my energy levels start to plummet.
If you want to stay focused throughout the day, you need to assign tasks which require a lot of energy to periods of time where you have high energy. Your low energy times can then be used to complete tasks which require low energy levels. This approach will help you to stay focused and lead to greater productivity.
2. Choose the right location
If you want to stay focused throughout the day, you need to create a working environment which discourages and reduces unnecessary interruptions. While it may be acceptable to hold a friendly business lunch in a crowded restaurant; your most important tasks will require a great deal of concentration. A quiet environment is a must. During especially important tasks, you can take extra precautions to minimise interruptions, e.g.:
- Turn off your phone
- Turn off your email
- Place a do not disturb sign on your door
- Notify your colleagues that you are not to be contacted for the next period of time.
3. Increase your focus gradually
If you have been struggling to stay focused; it will require some time and effort to build up your concentration levels and your ability to focus. It is very difficult to jump from zero focus to being able to stay focused throughout the day, in one step. Instead, you can set yourself smaller objectives e.g. stay focused on a task for 25 minutes before you take a 5 minute break. Over time as you get better, you can increase the period of time that you wish to stay focused for.