Ask a manager, any manager, if they have too much to do and too many distractions.
The answer will surely be yes and yes again.
Who doesn’t find it difficult to focus at hectic times?
Distractions are mini-tests to prove our commitment
You are hard at work; confidently working through your well prioritised list of things to do and making sure you take appropriate breaks. Then begin the distractions; competing demands for our attention. For you it might be a call from your elderly mother, for me a call from my business associate. How we choose to respond can make the difference to our mood and to whether a task is completed as planned.
Give clear and firm messages to yourself and others
Everyone wants your time or attention, but you have to carve out protected time to focus on your own tasks. So, to yourself you might think or say something like “I am enthusiastically 100% committed to focusing on this one task.” Be open and upfront and tell others what to expect at these times.
So for example:
Use notices or signs:
“At work- please do not disturb.” “Working to a deadline.”
Ignore the call or email:
Do not respond immediately, allocate time later to catch up. And if you still have interruptions…
Have a few stock replies:
“I am working right now, can we speak later.” “I will be free after …. am/pm”.
Focus is about giving 100% commitment to the task we are doing right now, even if the office roof falls in we commit to completion. That might sound a little over the top, but it illustrates how easily we get distracted or overwhelmed by much less significant external distractions.
Worry fades when we focus It may surprise you that, being focused has made me happier in my work. That’s because a great by-product of being focused is that our minds can’t worry at the same time as being 100% involved in a task. Keeping focused creates opportunities for our best possible future in and outside of work. In time, this allows us to live a life without worry.
Share your tips What distracts you at work? And how do you get back on track?
I’d love you to leave a comment below. Someone might be waiting to hear about that gem of yours! Just because it’s not new to you doesn’t mean it won’t be new to others.
To help yourself here, download my free eBook 7 Guaranteed Ways to Reduce Stress, Stop Feeling Overhelmed at Work, and Get Your Life Back it has:
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