The distraction quickly becomes overwhelming.
How can we all have a little more attention to our professional life? Here are some ideas.
- Find/create a special quiet place
Interestingly, half of the marketers in our survey (and more, who said they were better at their jobs) said they have a special place to avoid interruptions when working on mentally demanding tasks.
It is a very simple idea, but it is something that we can all do more often. Your quiet place can be private in your office building, a place to spend a good day, or perhaps the local library.
- Try the Pomodoro technique
This time management concept encourages you to split your workday into parts using a stopwatch – 25 or 35 minute segments are the most popular – separated by small intervals. After completing four intervals, a longer rest period is performed.
The idea is that the timer will install a sense of urgency and focus, and allow time to process and recharge through interruptions. This technique is appreciated for its benefits in brain training and for reducing distraction.
- Treat yourself to noise-canceling headphones
Again, a simple solution. If there is nowhere to physically “escape” in the workplace, or if you work in a family office (or on the map), a noise-canceling headset can be your new best friend.
Put on classical and classical music with the chores of the day. Collateral material benefit: Notify colleagues that you are in focus mode while you can tame the noise around you.
- Practice mindfulness for a few minutes
If you feel overwhelmed and distracted, take a few deep breaths and connect with your senses.
- Leave email aside
You’ll probably have to check your email all day if something urgent comes in, but … if you really want to focus, close your inbox for a while – try to start with an hour (I’m still there, I I’m back, I promise!).
Even if we don’t think we are distracted by the incoming messages, we are. So, give yourself a break when you need it.
Keep your email up to date by scheduling it on the calendar so you can achieve an immediate and tangible goal.
- Imagine what to do first
Or, in the words of Mark Twain, “Eat a live frog in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you for the rest of the day.” First of all, you need to move away from what to do or from your less favorite tasks.
Of course, it is tempting at first to make things easy and deal with difficult things, but you will feel a lot more logical if you can do the opposite. You give yourself enough time and energy for the things you really need to focus on. (And you will thank yourself later!)
- Install “Wednesdays without meetings” (or any day you want!)
Some of the busiest marketers and entrepreneurs we know have found that blocking a day of the week without meetings can increase your productivity. It gives you a long, uninterrupted period of time to focus, think and create. Try it and tell us what you think. (We will definitely try!)
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In short: despite all the distractions, it is still possible (and necessary) to have a productive workday. Find the awareness strategies that work for you and implement them if necessary!