Prerna is a thinker, observer, reader & writer. She is always curious to learn. She is a strong believer in human potential.
Do you struggle to complete your tasks?
Do you easily get distracted while working?
Well, in that case, you and I are the same.
So, what happens with me is whenever I sit for writing or doing any specific task my mind wanders around other tasks too.
For example, while working on one thing I have many other tabs open with different tasks. And when I suddenly click on that my focus gets shifted to other tasks. Or I can say mobile notification, calls, or anything apart from my main task tries hard to get my attention.
And I think it happens not only with me but everybody.
I remember when I was in school focusing was never that hard for me as it is now. I think because time was designated for each task then. For example, studying, playing, watching tv, video games, etc had their designated time limit. So, when it’s time to study I can’t watch TV or play games. But now I have a mobile phone 24*7 with me which is a great source of distraction.
I don’t know about you guys but I hate these office chat groups. These people don’t understand the work hour limit or their employees have a life after work as well. I mean I understand when it is absolutely important and it’s an emergency. But discussing all small things in the group which is anyways going to be discussed next day in the office. Or the work that anyways will be done in the office itself what’s the point of discussing it after office hours and interrupting someone’s personal life.
Again, this is my personal opinion and I don’t find this practice productive anymore. I prefer giving 9-10 hours completely at the office and doing productive work rather than merging my professional and personal life. In the end, you left unproductive and untimely.
So, nowadays your work life is not limited to office hours. Your social life I mean the virtual one is also not limited. Everyone uses Insta, FB, Snapchat, etc while working. Again social media or mobile phones are not the real problems. The way we are using it that’s the problem.
But there will always be something or somebody that will interrupt you, right?
So, does it mean when you get interrupted you should blame others?
For an excuse, we all use this. But you and I know nothing can interrupt us unless we allow them to do. Think about it this way, any time you get interrupted you allow someone or something to enter your mind.
Isn’t it frightening?
Your life is controlled by what you focus on.
— Tony Robbins
So one thing is for sure interruption will be there. There will be someone or something who wants your attention all the time.
Now, what can be done?
How can you improve your focus?
Here are few things which I always do when I want to focus and it works well for me.
1. Designate time
I have clearly informed my family to not call me when I am in the office unless it is important. So, whenever I get a call I know something is damn important. I hardly use my phone for personal use when I am indulged in work. This way I give my whole attention and focus to my work.
I will not lie that I don’t use my social media or chat with my friends in the office. I do that but in the break time. Now, what about the office calls after working hours? In-office as well I have a repo that they can call me when it’s important and it’s related to me (Most importantly).
But what about the WhatsApp group? Well, unfortunately, I can’t do much about it. So when I see the message is really important then I involve myself otherwise I have put aside some time especially for it. While traveling to the office I read all the chat at once. So, this way I am aware of what’s happening in the office and I do not have to give my time and attention to every notification. Otherwise, my whole day will end up on WhatsApp only.
Here I mean to eliminate the distraction. For example, when I sit for writing or reading I don’t use my phone. I put the net off to avoid distraction.
I prefer a silent place for my work at home. Sometimes I even put on headphones so that the TV sound or anything couldn’t distract me.
People who know me noticed that I always carry my water bottle with me every time. So, when I sit for my work I make sure I have enough water with me so that I don’t have to get up for this. It’s a small thing but effective.
It's not the daily increase but a daily decrease. Hack away at the essential.
— Bruce Lee
Whether you take it or not but it works, at least for me. Meditation is the key for my mind to be calm and focused. Obviously, it’s not a one-day thing. It needs practice and consistency.
At the start you will feel distracted the most, random thoughts will come to your mind, you will focus on everything apart from meditation. At the initial stage, it happens with everyone and that’s okay. It will take time to focus and I must say it works. From my personal experience, I am saying this.
I usually do twin heart meditation but when I run short of time I do 10-15 min meditation with a piece of relaxing meditation music.
When you can’t focus, first acknowledge what problem you have that needs a solution.
Checking your phone, again and again, while doing work, is not normal. You are surrounded by many things that need your attention all the time. Whether it is your phone, social media, calls, Netflix, your pet, anything, and everything. Nowadays marketing and advertising people are becoming louder and louder to gain your attention.
But you have to think about what matters to you. Focus on it and stay on the path.
This was my way to be focused on my work. Your way would be different.
I would love to hear your way of remaining focused and productive.
Please do comment below on how you avoid distraction and remain focused.
Do whatever you do intensely.
— Robert Henri
© 2021 Prerna Dhulekar