They say that what you focus on increases. Just from the power of your attention being on something over time, things grow naturally and sometimes effortlessly through you and others as a result.
Stop right in the middle of your work one day and ask yourself: Do I know what one thing I am supposed to be achieving at this minute in time?
Bring the task at hand back into focus, and then get back to work on it without getting caught up in new thoughts and letting yourself drift away again. But you will again, if you’re human, and that’s fine.
My point is: Get in the habit of recognizing that you’re distracted quickly when it happens, and then quickly letting the distraction go and getting back on track again.
If you keep the task at hand on your mind as you work, you will be more focused, effective, and fast, without having to feel rushed or strained. And it takes 2 seconds to do.
But with this added awareness will come more power achieve what you want. Now, you can be doing exactly what you’re working on at the moment and not half-asleep. Don’t live on auto-pilot…Work hard and play hard!
This is HUGE if you have A.D.D. Or otherwise find yourself skipping from one task to another every minute (on the minute).
Strategies for Staying Focused
So let’s say that the task at hand is writing a blog post:
If you get a great idea about another post or something else besides this post, jot it down quickly and get back to writing your post.
If you get a phone call, check the Caller ID to see who it is—and save it for later if it can wait.
If you feel like checking your email, resist the urge. Get back on track.
One way to stay focused on the task at hand is to write it down before you start on it. This helps you to 1) Choose the most important thing to work on, and 2) Stay on track once you’ve started until you’re done.
If you think that writing down what you’re doing would be a pain because you’d have to update it every 2 minutes with “Answered the phone” and “Sent an email,” that EXACTLY why you should use a log.
You might pick one thing and work on it for 10-20 minutes, then move on to doing emails all at once. Grouping tasks together to do in one sitting is a powerful way to stay focused, save time, and not be distracted.
There are several good time-management planners and time journals out there. But no matter which one you use (or even if it’s jotted down on some nearby paper) recording how you actually use your time can be as effective as planning how to use your time in the first place.