How to Be Productive and Eliminate Distractions At Work
By: Benefits by Design | Thursday July 12, 2018Updated : Wednesday July 22, 2020
Let’s face it — work can be full of distractions, from chatting at the water cooler or coffee machine to getting sucked into scrolling on your favourite social media platform. And since we’re being honest, let us also say this: it’s okay not to be 100% productive 100% of the time (after all, there’s plenty of science and evidence around the idea of breaks and vacation).
However, sometimes distractions can interfere with work and negatively impacting productivity, and that’s bad for everyone. Here are a few productivity tips to eliminate distractions and boost productivity.
#1. Make A List and Reference it Often
Make a list and check it twice, three, four times a day. Putting pen to paper and writing down your goals for the day is a powerful way to get started. And really, is there any better feeling than scratching things off of your list?
#2. Focus On One Thing at a Time
This goes hand-in-hand with the list making recommendation above. Put your biggest, absolutely-must-get-done-today items at the top of your list and work down, one at a time. Alternatively, you can put all the quick, easy stuff at the top to get a rush of that “scratching things off your list” feeling right from the get-go, giving you a boost to tackle the bigger projects later in the day.
No matter which we you do it, dividing your attention hurts productivity, and that’s a fact that goes way back! Confucius said it best:
“The man who chases two rabbits catches neither.”
#3. Close Your Door
If you really need to get something done and you have a door to close, close it. It may seem stand offish, but the silence can help hone your focus. Just don’t make a habit out of it!
#4. Schedule Your Day
Got a lot to do? Block out time in your calendar to get specific tasks done and hold yourself accountable for that time. Whether it be an online course, a specific project, or even just catching up on some email, put it in your calendar!
#5. Turn Off Your Phone
A little louder for the people still glued to their smartphones — TURN OFF YOUR PHONE! Everytime it goes off and you check it, you lose productivity, and we aren’t referring to the 30 seconds it takes to read and reply to the text.
It’s proven that having phones on and available hurts productivity drastically. Not only do you lose time (particularly if you get sucked into something, then time will really fly by) but more importantly, you lose focus.
#6. Try the 90-90-1 Rule
Here’s how it works:
For 90 days, the first 90 minutes of your workday is dedicated to the single most important project you’re working on at the moment. Studies show that the human brain is most productive early in the morning, so that is the best time for working on your most important tasks.