Our focus drives everything in our lives. It almost single-handedly determines whether or not we’ll experience a high quality of life and accomplish things that are meaningful to us.
Do you have trouble staying focused?
If tasks that should take 30 minutes take you an hour to complete, or if you constantly find yourself looking at your phone or checking your Facebook throughout the day, the answer is probably yes.
Unfortunately, we rarely focus and attend any task for more than 3 to 5 minutes before getting distracted — primarily by emails, texts, and social media. We are all constantly self-distracting whether you’re in school, at your job, or just at home.
To combat these bad habits, we have to retrain our brains to respond based on a set schedule rather than spontaneous cues, i.e. an alert or notification.
You should start small. For instance, you can set your alarm or a timer for one minute during which you can check any communication network. Once those 60 seconds are up, set it for 15 minutes — the maximum attention span these days — during which you must work without checking your email, texts, or any social media platforms. Then repeat.
The key to this method is turning your phone face down and on silent, as well as closing out of all your distracting windows on your desktop, rather than just minimizing them. If you see or hear the notifications, it’s going to stimulate you to move and switch your focus and your attention there regardless of whether you want to or not.
Once you are comfortable with 15 minutes of distraction-free work time, which can take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks, bump it up to 20, 25, and then 30 minutes. Once you’re at 30 minutes, that will increase your productivity significantly.
This internal drive to check your networks because you’re anxious that you’re missing out on something important is just as distracting as visual or auditory cues. The trick to carving out 15 to 30 minutes, where you’re able to concentrate deeply on one task, is to not let either of them control your responding methodology.
You can learn three more ways how to stay focused and increase your productivity by watching Brendon Burchard’s video: