Whether you’re working from the office, or from somewhere else, distractions can interrupt your workflow. Some may feel out of your control while others may feel more like bad habits. Whatever the case, distractions can significantly limit our productivity. They break our focus and cause us to lose valuable time, often without fully realizing just how much it we’ve lost. If you’re striving to be more productive this year, starting with a close look at your distractions can be a major help. Here are some ways to do that:
Identify Top Sources of Distraction
It’s not enough to just want to reduce distractions. We need to target those specific activities and habits that are creating the most interruption to our workflow. Take a few days to really assess how you spend your time and which things pull your focus from where it needs to be. It might be social media, text messages, reading the news, or even a chatty coworker. By getting specific and bringing some clear awareness to that activity, it helps us to pay more attention each time we want to engage in it.
Look for Patterns
Maybe you catch yourself in an endless scroll on LinkedIn or Facebook around the same time each afternoon. Perhaps it’s just before lunch where you notice you get caught up reading news article after news article. Maybe it’s simply when you’re feeling more stress than usual that more distractions creep in. Pinpointing these patterns can help you prepare better. Maybe you’re feeling a bit burnt out and need an actual break. Often, that is better for productivity than an unintentional distraction.
Once you’ve gotten clear on your specific distractions and when you’re most likely to get caught up in them, you can start devising strategies to help you avoid them. As I mentioned above, maybe it’s getting up from your desk and taking a short five- or ten-minute walk. Maybe it’s silencing your phone for an hour so that you can finish a project you’re working on. Maybe it’s monitoring your stress level and giving yourself some chances to relax throughout the day.
I wrote a couple weeks ago about being productive enough to meet your goals, which fits perfectly with this week’s article. You can find that, here.
Good luck and let me know how any of these ideas may have helped you!
If you’re a loan officer, sales manager, or branch manager considering new opportunities, don’t hesitate to get in touch.