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Tips for Staying Focused



Staying focused is hard. Trust us, we understand. Sometimes, it can feel like you’re torn in a million directions and focusing on your work can feel like fighting against your own brain. But there are many proven ways to help increase focus and motivation.

We’re here with our three best tips to help you stay focused and productive so you can succeed!

Work with your tech, not against

Sometimes, people find that their technology ends up being more of a distraction than a help. Maybe you’re working on a big project, but keep getting calls or email notifications that take your mind away from the task. But did you know there are features on your phones and laptops you can use to help you reduce distractions?

Most laptops and phones have some sort of “do not disturb” function or quiet mode. Use these to your advantage. When it comes time to focus, silence your notifications so you can work on the task at hand without being distracted by incoming texts or calls. Don’t worry, you can always catch up on these when you take a break. Some phones even allow you to choose which notifications to silence and which to allow. Say you’re waiting for a call from your boss while you work, but your friends keep texting you about your brunch plans this weekend. In your settings, you can quiet the notifications from your friends but keep alerts from your boss on.

Do you find that you keep pulling up certain time-wasting websites when you’re trying to work? You can install web-blocking software or extensions on your laptop that will block you from these sites for certain times during the day. Our technology is powerful, so try using its features to your advantage.

Take regular breaks

Did you know that working non-stop for long hours actually decreases productivity? When working on a task for long-hours, your brain starts to get tired. You’re more likely to start making mistakes, sacrifice efficiency, and lose motivation. This is why taking regular breaks throughout your work day is so important. When you take a break, your brain gets a chance to recharge and you can come back to the task at hand with more energy and motivation.

Try using the Pomodoro method. This is a tried and true method that helps you stay focused and efficient. Set a timer for 25 minutes and work on your task. Then, take a 5 minute break. These regular 5 minute breaks give your brain a moment of rest, allowing you to stay focused. You’ll notice that you’re able to work more efficiently when you take these regular, shorter breaks. You can even find many YouTube videos that use the Pomodoro timer with background music that supports focus.

You should also take a longer break every 4 cycles (about every 2 hours). These breaks should be about 15-30 minutes. On these longer breaks, try going for a walk to get some sun, follow a quick YouTube workout or yoga video to get some endorphins, or eat a healthy snack to get some brain-food. You’ll return to the task feeling energized and creative.

Switch up your tasks

When you work on the same project all day long, you may find yourself getting frustrated, overwhelmed, or bored. It seems like this huge task that will take a lifetime to complete. Instead, try working on two or three big projects throughout the day. Break your big projects down into smaller, more achievable steps, and then alternate projects every one or two hours.

By switching tasks throughout the day, your work will feel fun again. You feel better and stay more motivated when you have a sense of achievement. By completing part of one task, then part of another, you activate the reward system of your brain more frequently, which gives you motivation to keep working. By making tasks more manageable and switching focus every couple of hours, you’ll be able to finish projects more easily and actually enjoy your work. By the end of the day, you’ll have made huge progress on a number of projects without feeling burnt out.

We know how hard it can be to stay focused, but with these three tips, you’ll find yourself working smarter and having fun. Which tip is your favourite?

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