3 simple Ways To Stay on Task at Work

**Thank you to Alice from Nuggetlands for Guest-Posting Today**

Ever since I went back to work full time in December, I have been struggling to stay focused and on task. I work in an open office environment so there are constantly a lot of shiny objects for me to be distracted by. Not to mention the never-ending notifications of breaking news, email or text messages. It’s been six months in this new environment and I think I’ve finally found my stride with the help of some simple and purposeful ways to keep my focus and stay on task.  After all, I feel much more productive and way less stressed when I have my to-do list managed.  

Whether you work at home, away from or stay home with your kids these simple tips will help you stay focused on the task at hand.

3 Simple Tips For How To Stay On Task at Work

1.   Turn off your notifications

 

Minimizing distractions is the first step. It’s difficult to minimize distractions visually in an open office, besides putting my headphones on – the universal sign for “don’t bother me” in an open concept – there isn’t much more I can control. What I can control are my digital distractions. Notifications from Instagram. Email. Text. HuffPost. Apple Watch. The list goes on and on.

 

When it’s time to focus and get to work, I put my phone in Do Not Disturb mode. I have an iPhone so it’s possible to switch this setting on but still get notifications and calls from my daughter’s school or our nanny.

 

I also do the same with my laptop. This simple act helps me stay focused on the things I need to get done without stopping to look at any new emails or Slack notifications that come it.

2.  Close your tabs.

 

I’ll admit it, I have a problem with my Chrome tabs. I keep windows open hoping that I’ll keep projects and items that I need to get to the top of mind. When in actuality, it creates more distractions that it’s worth. It’s visually distracting and a constant reminder of things that I could/should/might have to do, increasing my stress level.

 

Now I bookmark the tabs with projects I need to get to and add those items to my good old fashioned to-do list in my notebook. I have started to use Evernote, cause that’s what all the young cool kids do that I work with, but I still like the act of writing things down and crossing them off a list. It makes me feel accomplished.

3.  Focus Keeper

This is an app that I downloaded on my phone and it’s been REALLY useful in helping me stay focused. It counts down from 25 minutes. Studies have shown that this is a more effective way of using a timer, rather than counting up. Once you have hit that 25-minute mark, it gives you a short 5-minute break. That’s when I can step away from my computer, check in on social media, use the restroom, whatever it is to give my brain a break so that I’m back and ready for the next 25 minutes.

 

Since I’m such a planner, I like to map out how I’m going to use each time block during the day, especially if I have meetings and client calls to work around. My first block is for checking in on all my clients each morning. Then I prioritize my to-do list for the day and make sure I use some of the time blocks to do email and my Asana tasks.

 

Try These Simple Tips to Be More Productive

This isn’t a perfect system but it’s better than what I was doing before. I’ve recognized my need for some structure and having the accountability of the timer, to-do lists, and little distractions, it’s made me far more productive and WAY less stressed out. At least until the next client emergency…#agencylife.

 

FOLLOW ALICE – Nuggetlands Website | Instagram | Pinterest 

You might also like –
Simple Ways To Be On Your Phone Less
Life Changing Morning Routine
10 Simple Life-Changing Habits

 

Until next time, keep on keeping on with a simple purposeful life.
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