“In the office, nearly 50% of American employees say they work for only 15 minutes before becoming distracted, while 53% report wasting an hour or more a day because of disruptions.” –Time
The irony of going to work and not being able to get work done is not lost on many of us. In today’s open office space and cubicle work environments, sporadic lack of focus can make it hard to get things done. Here are some smart tips for any employee who has felt that distractions are affecting his or her work productivity. Work smarter, not harder.
- Work offline: Go ahead, press ‘hide’ for your email and online windows so that you may focus on your task at hand. By closing all those screens, you will be less tempted to read, reply, and become distracted from emails that trickle in.
- Maintain a Routine: Create a list of work tasks at hand and prioritize them. By scheduling your daily work activities and time strategically, you cut the daily work distractions such as replying to emails or opening up shared documents that pull you in another direction.
- Take Breaks to Think: As any writer will share with you, movement is ‘mind momentum’. If you’re stuck on a task, or have a block, take a moment to get away from your desk and find the solution in motion. The simple act of getting water or pacing a hallway can free your mind. Slow down the process to think clearly and creatively.
- Break Down Your Smaller Tasks:Break down tasks that are time-consuming but not urgent into smaller increments. By leaving time to do work that is not a priority,you'll find it makes the task less stressful and allows you to make better use of your time.
- Plan A Deadline: Sometimes our greatest obstacles are ourselves. Set a specific goal for when you wish to have a project completed. Make yourself accountable for completing your work week's punch list by pinpointing an exact time you plan to complete tasks or pass projects along.
- Find a Quiet Place to Work:It's unlikely that your work environment is the ideal quiet corner office, so creating your own quiet space is important. The use of a sound machine or headphones with some sort of relaxation technology is a great solution when wall are thin or you do not have a door to shut.