focus

3 Tips To Boost Productivity And Focus

3 Tips To Boost Productivity And Focus

3 Tips To Boost Productivity And Focus

We live in an era of information overload. We are bombarded with media, technology, entertainment, and notifications every day. It seems there are hundreds of people and things competing for your attention at any given time. There is no wonder why in the last few years, our attention spans have become shorter and our ability to focus has decreased.

Your time is valuable. Not being able to focus can have a negative effect on how successful we are at work and in our personal lives. Focus is a skill that we develop by training and practice. Productivity requires intention and strategy to help make your time work for you!

Let’s begin by examining some productivity maximizers that make us more productive. We will discuss tips and techniques to help improve your focus. Then let’s look at how holding yourself accountable can help you to improve your productivity today! Finally, we’ll look at how you can start to set time limits on projects to keep you on track.

Productivity Maximizers

Hacking your mind to increase your productivity is just one part of the process.

The next relies on maximizing that productivity. You’ll need to decrease burn out, as well as focus on the end results.

In addition, learning to turn your goals into processes will help you get more done.

How To Decrease Burnout

Burnout is a very real problem that affects your productivity. The work-life balance is hard to achieve, but it is necessary.

Symptoms of burnout:

  • Inability to concentrate
  • Lack of energy
  • Having many non-productive workdays in a row

It’s clear that a burnout period can make it even tougher to get your tasks done. Thankfully, there are some tricks to help you get out of this slump.

Some of them involve taking time for yourself.

Start meditating, get plenty of sleep, take a few hours off and do something fun. Force yourself to have more of a work-life balance.  

Not only will these activities help prevent burnout, but with them, you can overcome it. You’ll end up much more productive as a result.

Focusing On The End Result

What’s the end result of the items on your “to do” list? By focusing solely on the goal instead of the individual tasks, you’ll be more likely to get everything done.

The end result can be either big or small.

For example, it could something as simple as completing a project, or as large as winning an award or meeting a sales goal. View each task as a step that needs to be taken in order to get the proverbial finish line.

By changing how you think about your tasks, you’ll be able to achieve more. The process stops being about getting one thing done and instead focuses on meeting a goal.

Concentrate On Processes

Stop thinking about your goals as events, and instead, consider them processes instead. The difference lies in learning how to enjoy everything that it takes to meet those goals. Once you love what you do, you’ll want to work harder.

Now let’s take a look at accountability.

Holding Yourself Accountable

If you’re struggling to get things done, it’s easy to switch up your routine believing that will help you get back on track.

Sometimes this is effective, sometimes it only makes it harder to refocus our attention where it’s needed most.

It’s always better to take a step back and evaluate why we’re losing focus. What is happening in our lives that we’re finding ourselves running out of steam?

What can we do to refresh and refocus so that our attention and energy is going on the things that matter? And where is that time going?

Were you spending too much time in email or on social media trying to respond to customers or provide instant support?

If so, consider outsourcing support inquiries to a live agent or support desk so that you aren’t constantly distracted by people who need your time while still being able to provide prompt service.

P.S. Want to know more about outsourcing? Click here for a great post to read and you can also get a detailed outsourcing report here .

Did you fail to prioritize tasks and goals and ended up losing focus because you are constantly multi-tasking in an effort to catch up?

If so, consider using a product management tool that will guide you through each workday. The key is to develop a regular routine, along with work habits that improve your focus and workflow.

It’s also important to know when your struggle to focus is your body’s way of saying it’s had enough.

It’s way too easy to think you can push out one more hour or get that one more thing done each day but when your mind has had enough no matter what you do, you’ll struggle to regain focus.

Instead, give yourself time for creative breaks so that you’re able to reenergize and boost that productivity.

Burn out is a real thing and it’s the #1 focus killer so learning to hold yourself accountable while still also giving yourself room to take those necessary breaks so that you’re able to boost creativity and output is important.

Setting Time Limits On Projects

It’s easy to get caught up spending more time on a project that you initially planned.  We can always find ways to tweak and improve our brand, services and products – but the problem is that not all of this time is wisely spent.

In fact, it’s often a better idea to get these to market rather than fall behind because you’re trying to get everything “just right”.

Let your market dictate the time you allocate to your projects.

Here are a few tips to help you improve focus and boost productivity:

Block Time

Set time limits on every single task – no exceptions.

Lay out the groundwork for each project you are working on, including a complete overview of how to get from start-to-finish. Then, create to a schedule and stick to it!

Assign time blocks to every task so that you can stay focused while being reasonable with how much time each goal will take.

Not only will doing this help you get more done in less time, but it will immediately improve your focus because you are allocating a specific amount of time to one thing – and following through with it.

Prioritize

We can easily waste a ton of valuable time by trying to get everything done at one but without creating a priority list that outlines the most critical steps in the process of reaching your goal, we can end up struggling to meet deadlines.

Not every task on our ever-growing to-do list is essential.  It’s important that you are able to identify what is absolutely required from your list of “want-to’s”.

WANT TO Doesn’t Mean You HAVE TO.

When you’re running short on time and you’re struggling to focus, a priority list becomes even more important.

And by breaking your tasks down into chunks that are assigned a clear value, you’ll be able to zero in on the parts of your business that need more attention while freeing up valuable time.

Prioritization is a crucial skill to master so take the time to get used to it.

Create A Routine

This is a critical step in staying focused. It begins with creating a strategy and regular routine based on when you are most productive, creative and able to produce without distractions.

Do you feel more creative in the early mornings but discover that your energy tapers down by noon? Then set your alarm and start working earlier, giving yourself a cut-off time.

Do you have to shut off your phone, close your email, or fire up a playlist in order to spring into action?

Separate Business From Personal (If Possible)

Your work environment is just as important as your overall workflow.  You should do everything possible to separate your personal life from your work life so that you are able to eliminate distractions and focus on your priority list.

If you work from home, you should have a dedicated area to work in, ideally a home office. In there is work time, out of there is home/personal time.

Boundaries are very important for productivity so try to make use of them if at all possible.

Mute That Inner Voice Of Doubt

If you’re allowing negative thoughts and self-doubt to lead the way, you’ll never have enough faith in your abilities to see things through.

You’ll not only take longer to get ahead, but chances are you’ll never reach your desired destination.

Well, there is a lot more to be learnt about increasing focus and productivity; far more than can be covered in this short post, but if you’d like to know more about this, then click on the featured resource below where you can pick up a free report that covers this topic in more detail. Download, read it and take action 😊

Continue Reading
Mindset Hacks To Increase Focus

Mindset Hacks To Increase Focus

Mindset Hacks To Increase Focus

Let’s face it; we all want to be more focused because that way we can get more things done, right?

Your time is valuable. Not being able to focus can have a negative effect on how successful we are at work and in our personal lives.

Focus is a skill that we develop by training and practice. Productivity requires intention and strategy to help make your time work for you!

So, let’s look at some ways you can dial in your focus so you can be more productive and hopefully more successful in whatever you are trying to achieve.

And this is especially important for those who have found themselves working from home and aren’t used to having all the homely distractions around them. If that is you, this is doubly important for you to grasp.

The first thing to look at is how you are spending (aka wasting) your time.

Identifying Time Killers

Before you can begin to learn how to concentrate better on the tasks that you need to accomplish each day, you first need to know where your time goes.

There are a number of time killers that destroy your focus without your knowledge.

The Biggest Time Killers

As yourself this question and answer it honestly:

Do you pick up your phone every time that you receive a notification?

If you answered “yes” to that question, then you’ve identified our first time killer. By picking up your phone repeatedly throughout the day, you are destroying your focus.

Whichever task you were working on was interrupted as your attention moved to your phone.

There are several other important time killers to identify.

Some of these may sound familiar:

  1. Facebook and YouTube
  2. Your email inbox
  3. Non-work related conversations
  4. The internet

In order to identify the time killers that are destroying your focus, you need to spend a day observing your activities. Write down everything that you do, keeping a running list on a piece of paper on your desk.

Yes, this can be a time killer in and of itself, but it will help you see where your time goes.

For example, you might notice that you spent 30 minutes on your personal Facebook account, or that you stop what you’re doing and pick up your phone every time that it goes off.

By tracking your time and activities, you’ll know what you need to eliminate in order to improve your concentration.

Distractions Destroy Your Focus

The problem with these distractions is that they destroy your focus.  Constantly starting and stopping an activity is no way to succeed.

You’ll spend more time getting back into the proper mindset than you do working on the task.

On top of this, by frequently going back to this same task every time you get interrupted, you’re spending more time on it than necessary.

As a result, your list of projects will just end up getting longer.

Next, let’s look at a few powerful tips and strategies that will help you quickly improve your focus.

Tips To Improving Focus

Improving your focus isn’t as difficult as you may think.

By now you should have identified some of the things that are killing your concentration. It’s time to learn how to overcome them by hacking your mind.

Mind Hacks To Improve Productivity

You need to hack your mind in order to become more productive.

These tips will also help you deal with those time killers that eat away at your day and make tasks take twice as long to finish.

Once you have put these tips to work, you will be able to accomplish more in less time! Don’t be put off by the simplicity of some of them; try them and you will be pleasantly surprised.

Work When You’re At Your Most Productive

Not everyone is at their most productive in the morning. Some think more clearly at other times of the day.

By adjusting your schedule to coincide with your peak brain activity, you’re setting yourself up to get more done.

Many folks swear by getting up early and doing your most important tasks before anyone is around, but if you hate getting up early, you are hardly going to be motivated are you?

So do what fits your preferred schedule, rather than trying to force someone else’s onto yours.

Use The Pomodoro Technique

The Pomodoro technique is a time management tool that requires you to break your day into specific 20-minute periods, called Pomodoros.

During those 20-minute periods, you focus solely on the task at hand, ignoring all distractions. Every three Pomodoros, you get to take a five-minute break.

This is a well-known technique and has been shown to work, so give it a go.

Unplug Yourself From The Internet

The internet is a major time distraction. Put your computer on airplane mode so that you can’t go online.

This will force you to focus on your tasks without the temptation of Facebook, YouTube, and all of the other websites that call for your attention.

Don’t underestimate the draw of social media; it will draw you in if you let it, so ensure you won’t be distracted by any notifications.

Ignore Your Phone

This is very closely linked to the tip above. Every time your smartphone goes off, it draws your attention to it, not what you’re working on.

Place your phone in a drawer, turn it off, put it on silent, or do whatever you need to do in order to eliminate this time killer.

This is one of the most important tips to get a hold of and can instantly increase your focus.

Stop Multitasking

Multitasking has negative effects on the brain. Studies have shown that it lowers your IQ. It also forces you to take longer to finish your tasks and makes you 40% less productive overall.

Instead, only do one thing at a time. Sounds counterintuitive but it works!

The multitasking myth has been around for many years, but the most successful people are laser focused on one task at a time, and if they are doing that, shouldn’t you?

Form Better Habits

It takes at least 21 days in order for a new activity to become a habit. Begin these new habits now, and before the month is out, you’ll be more productive than ever.

As you can appreciate, a lot of this is dependent on the way you think and if you want to know more about developing a good mindset for success, please click on the featured resource below for a free Strong Mindset report; download, read it and take action 😊

Continue Reading
Balance Focus And Creativity

Balance Between Focus And Creativity

Balance Between Focus And Creativity

Everyone has different sweet spots that help them focus or be more creative. Essentially, different locations or times of day can either be more conducive to daydreaming and creativity or more conducive to focus and continued hard work.

If you try to do one where you succeed better in the other, you can either become unfocused or uncreative, so it’s important to keep them separated. For example, you may be most focused and hardworking late at night.

This is pretty common for entrepreneurial people, so you should choose to work on things that require a great deal of focus late at night if that’s what’s best for you. Likewise, you may be more creative in the morning or afternoon, so that can be your time to do things like design work or other creative endeavors.

Sweet spots aren’t just times of day, though. You may also find that different locations that you choose to work at may help or hinder various things like focus. Some people have dedicated office spaces where they find it really easy to focus, while others may find it best to focus out at a café.

You might be really creative being outside, or laying comfortably in bed. Regardless of what your sweet spots are, you should utilize them to the best of your ability. Studies have found that location and time of day can greatly affect mood and productivity, so if you’re in the right sweet spot at the right time, you can get a lot more work done.

It also helps to separate areas that you work in and relax in. For example, if you tend to spend a lot of time on your couch relaxing, if you sit there to go and work all of a sudden, you probably won’t feel like focusing very much.

Your body can easily become accustomed to locations and will default to whatever you typically feel there, such as relaxation on the couch, and it’ll be hard to switch from relaxing to hard work.

You may have heard that you should never take technology to bed with you. That’s because, if you’re working in bed, it makes it hard for your body to recognize it as a place where relaxation and sleep should take place.

The variations in these sweet spots are why 9-to-5 jobs don’t work well for many people. If you need to be focused throughout the time you spend working, but you don’t focus well until the wee morning hours, then the entirety of the 9-5 time slot is going to throw you off and make you less productive.

By allowing yourself to get things done where you feel is best, you’ll benefit yourself by enjoying the work a bit more, and also benefit your business by being more productive. It’s all about personal preferences and wielding them effectively.

Focused Versus Unfocused – Where Creativity And Productivity Clash

There are two main “settings” you’ll work with throughout your career. Typically, you’re either doing productivity-focused work, or creative work.

While they’re certainly both work, and they’re both necessary to help you do your job properly, they often clash with one another.

You need to be able to separate the two into different periods of time. The reason they need to be kept separate is that each one requires you to be in a different state of mind. While creativity lets your mind wander and come up with new and exciting things, productivity and focus require you to home in on one specific thing and do it as well as you can.

When you’re trying to be creative, it’s fine to be unfocused. This doesn’t mean that you can be outright distracted, of course, but more so blurred while still looking at the project you’re working on.

It allows your mind to have room to experiment with different ideas and fresh, new ideas. When you need to be productive, you need absolute focus to get things done. You should follow your strict methods that work, and that you know work.

Don’t experiment with different things – just keep working with what works best. At this time, you don’t have room to maneuver very much, and you’re probably really locked in to whatever it is that you’re doing.

Depending on the job you have, each of these modes might have different times spent on them. For example, a construction worker or someone working in engineering might not want to experiment and be creative too much, but rather they want to work with what they know will work well and be effective.

On the other hand, a graphic designer will want to spend much more time being creative, with a bit of necessary productivity time for keeping the business end of things running smoothly.

You need to have separate times of the day for each one to take place. You might be more focused in the mornings, but more creative at night, or vice versa. If you try to force the two together, you won’t be happy with the results.

You’re either going to end up stifling your creativity with an over-focused mind, or you’ll have a mind that’s too open that ends up hurting your productivity. Test your timing and strengths and see what works best for your schedule and planning.

Eliminate Multi-Tasking To Fully Focus On Your Creative Endeavors

It’s very easy to get distracted these days. In addition to the normal situation of people trying to get you to do different things, you also have the distraction of technology that allows you to focus on all kinds of things at the same time.

This can be a big problem for your creativity, and might end up being the reason that your creative projects are taking longer. Multitasking is usually seen as a beneficial trait. In many work-related situations, it is.

Being able to focus and accomplish multiple tasks at the same time is commendable. However, when it comes to creative endeavors, you need a certain amount of dedicated time and focus to work on that task properly.

You’ve probably encountered times when you’ve gotten into a creative flow, where you’re working well and you’re quickly moving along with your work. This flow is key to quickly finishing good creative projects, because it’s the time when you’re working at max efficiency.

The only thing is, this flow requires focus on the project at hand only, and if you’re getting distracted by other things, then you’re not going to be able to maintain that flow. You may not even notice that you’re multitasking when it happens.

You might see it as a normal part of your work day, where, while you’re working on a project, you stop for a short bit to work on something else before quickly getting back to the project at hand.

It might also be a situation where you’re doing something congruently with the project, such as making a phone call or reading some emails. Multitasking forces you to break your focus, even if just for a moment, and your mind has to quickly play catch up to get back to where you were.

It might not seem all that noticeable if you’re used to doing it, but once you go without any distractions, you’ll realize what an impact that has on you. Imagine it like you’re watching a really good movie.

Going through the movie all in one sitting without any distractions is like cutting out multitasking. It goes fast, and is also the best way to do it. You can pause the movie and do other things in between scenes, or you can mess around on your phone while it’s running, but that’s going to cause you to lose focus and make the whole process take longer.

As you can appreciate, a lot of this is dependent on the way you think and if you want to know more about developing a good mindset for success, please click on the featured resource below for a free Strong Mindset report; download, read it and take action 😊

Time Blocking
Continue Reading