In this fast-paced world we now live in, distractions are found almost anywhere we look. First culprit – our devices through email and social media notifications. It’s easy to get distracted and go down the rabbit hole of distraction, which ultimately leads to non-productivity and not getting anything done. It’s natural to be distracted and we can’t always be productive – but! We can get a lot of work done in a short amount of time by mastering the art of focus. In this article, I share my top three strategies on how to focus and do more.
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Getting things done in a small amount of time is usually enabled by being hyper-focused on the task at hand. Even with a long to-do list that is pressing on your mind, being focused will help you see this to-do list as good stress instead of destructive stress.
You see, destructive stress and procrastination usually come hand-in-hand. It’s usually rooted in fear or a lack of belief that what we’re doing is going to make a difference. Hence, most of the time we give up or do the bare minimum just to get through the day. Then the next day, we’re going to feel unhappy and unfulfilled – then we question why we’re not reaching our goals.
Mastering the art of focus will bring you to greater heights with less stress and ultimate productivity. Focus is key when we want to achieve our goals.
Here are three practical tips on how to overcome procrastination and turn a focused energy to getting more done:
Giving yourself a deadline will push you to do the tasks you need to do. Imagine if you don’t have a deadline – you’ll only probably work whenever you’re inspired or are in on a “productivity burst.”
It would help if you do the 45 to 75-minute hyper-focused technique where you work only on one task for 45 to 75 minutes and take a 5 to 15-minute break afterward. You can use your phone alarm or any electronic timer to keep you in check. You can put your phone on a “Do not disturb” mode so you won’t get distracted with notifications from your email or phone.
Pulling yourself away from any possible distractions and committing to hyper-focused working time is mental discipline. Don’t be too hard on yourself if you don’t get it right the first time.
Getting clear on what you want to achieve can be beneficial as when you know what the end goal looks like, you can break the journey down into smaller goals. With a breakdown of your stretch goal, you get to see your progress and determine whether there are distractions that are limiting you to move forward.
Most of the time, working to achieve a stretch goal can overwhelm us as we go through the journey of achieving it. It becomes easy to give up halfway because there is no affirmation of how far we’ve come. Seeing the whole goal in little steps that you can celebrate along the way to reaching the larger goal makes a big difference.
Accountability is another important driver of focus and productivity. When you tell someone that you’re going to achieve a goal by a certain time on a specific day, you will be more inspired to ensure you build trust and teamwork. That will drive you to complete the task. With an accountability partner, there is someone else on your side as you strive to reach your goals.
Focus can be learned. Focus can be mastered through self-awareness of what distracts us. Making a commitment to continually practice your ability to focus will build your self-discipline muscles. Saying that you’re not someone who can be focused is robbing yourself of your full potential. The only way we’re going to make really, really amazing, wonderful things happen is to master the art of focus.
Want me to speak to your team about focus and productivity? Don’t hesitate to contact me!