14 ways to stay focused and productive

14 ways to stay focused and productive

Your making a lot of head room with your work, you’ve got a lot to do, but at this pace, you may be done by the end of the day, but then you see a bird out the window. Even simple things can be distracting, your not sure why random things get your attention but they do. Did you know that on average that it takes 20 minutes to get back where you left off? If you have 10 distractions a day, it can take you over 3 hours a day to simply get back into the swing. Thats a chunk of time.

It is impossible to shut the world out when you work and distractions will always find you, but it is up to you whether you take preventive measures to stay focused. This article is all about finding what works for you, the right techniques, your priortities and sticking to them. Follow these quick and simple 14 steps to help you stay focused and productive through out your office work day:

1. Get inspired and have fun
Any work task or routine is going to take a large chunk of your focus. Before you start, ask yourself why you are doing this task or routine. This will place added value onto your task. After you know why, spice it up and make it more fun. When you make something that you can call your own, you will have more inspiration to work with while doing what you are required to do to begin with.

2. Get a table and chair combo
Discomfort can lead to distractions, more than likely because you will look for them. When most of your work day is spent in a chair and in one place, it is imperative that you are comfortable. Get a comfortable chair with good back support and a desk with a good structure.

3. Organize your Desk
Clutter can be extremely distracting. In order to stay focused, only have the things that you need near you, for the rest either file it away or find a new place for it.

4. Make your computer distraction-less
Put short cuts on your desktop to all of the routine programs you use. By doing this, it will eliminate the clutter on your desktop and make everything more acessible.

5. Have plenty of water nearby
Drinking water isnt just healthy, it refreshes you and gives you natural energy. If you feel fatigued, or hungry, try drinking a glass of water, as it naturally supresses both. Keep in mind that not all stomach growling has to do with hunger, most of the time a glass of water or two between meals is perfet. Keep water within reach, so you can grab it when you need it.

6. Bring Snacks
Just like having the water close by, keep snacks handy too. If you are having hunger pains, even after drinking water, having a couple of snacks on hand can be wonderful. Eating in your workplace will not expose you to unrelated activities. Always have some snacks on hand

7. Make a to-do list every day
Have your to-do list by your computer everyday. It helps get you off on the right foot in the morning and keeps you from slacking off in the evening. Put it where you can always see it, that way you dont have to spend time trying to search for it.

8. Prioritze tasks
The first hour of your work day is always the most productive. The reason for this is that your energies have not yet been exhausted. For this reason, put all of the heard tasks of the day very first, this way you have the energy to tackle them. Follow the first hour of the day with the less pressing work, then end the day with the borin work. Doing tasks in this order will help you stay more focused, without spending your energy in the areas that you dont have it for.

9. Tell others about your personal policy
If you have your own method for working, and it involves time to yourself, let other people know. More than likely others will respect that, alloting you time to get some serious work done.

10. Listen to Music
If you are able to get work done while listening to music, then putting on some headphones may be good for you. Other people will acknowledge that you are listening to music and will only bother you if there is an urgent matter to attend to.

11. Put your phone on vibrate or silence
The chances of someone calling because your home has been burglarized or that someone you know is in the hospital is not likely. Turn off your phone to silent or vibrate and check it maybe once an hour or so, or have an emergency contact number for your office phone. This will eliminate daily distractions that your cellular device can cause.

12. Stay away from social sites
I think its obvious why this is on here. Social sites such as facebook, google plus, flikr, and twitter cause frequent distractions. Social networking sites give status updates from your friends and family all day long. Try to avoid this distraction at all costs.

13. Organize your emails
Emails can be just as distracting as social websites. Lets face it, daily you will recieve a lot of emails. Whether its from offers to spam, or an update of a status, it can cause a meaningless distraction. One good way to avoid this temptation is to have a completely seperate email address for all of the things that are work related. When you have spare time, go through your list of contacts and block meaningless advertisements or spam and filter out what you need.

14. Chose the right music
Music at work should provide you with a sense of calm and keep you inspired. For some people, listening to certain types of music can give them energy and fuel adrenaline. If you listen to music that seems to distract more than detach, then you need to find a better genre to listen to. Music such as jazz or orchestra music is typically best for work environments, but you decide.

Every individual is different in the way that they work. Try following these steps to help you deal with and avoid daily distractions and you will be well on your way to being productive and focused through out your work day.