Contrary to popular belief, multitasking isn’t the key to getting more done in a limited time. Juggling between creating a report, answering calls, getting back at emails and DMs won’t enable you to finish them faster than you would be doing them one at a time. In fact, the more activities you undertake, the higher your chances of failing at accomplishing them. If you are working at Vertis North Corporate Center, for example, you would understand that multitasking won’t allow you to focus or become more productive than you already are.
Fortunately, there are practices you can adapt to have better focus and productivity when in the office. You can apply these in any task you undertake. That way, you can accomplish more with or without a time limit.
1. Chunk your work
Cut your work shift into segments. This helps you identify when to take a break and reflect on what you must accomplish first. According to Kelly Noel Rasmussen, the brain works best when it operates in short spurts. Spending 25 minutes focusing on activity and dedicating 5 minutes for breaks puts your mind into perspective. You can resume the activity after the break or shift to another so you won’t feel listless.
2. Track your time
Use a time tracker on your desktop, laptop or phone to figure out how much time you spend on an activity. Being aware of how much time you spend each activity helps you identify the parts of your day you are most productive. It also enables you to see which parts of your day you can cut down or attack differently.
3. Know your capacity
Don’t stand by and wait until the end of your shift to tackle tasks that consume your brain power. If you’re a morning person, you must eat your frogs in the morning. Your mind is still fresh and you can still give your full concentration. If it’s the opposite, you can face your challenges in the afternoon. That way you are all warmed up and in the right state of mind to tackle your task.
4. Hide time-suck temptations
You might plan on checking your Facebook and Instagram feed for only a minute but it can turn into a scroll-fest if you forget to keep track of time. The same is true when watching a video on YouTube or keeping tabs on online games. When you think of how many times you do this and add up the minutes, you might be surprised to find it can add up to an hour. To prevent giving in to time-suck temptations, you can commit to hiding your phone when at work. You can also install plugins or apps that block social media platforms and games when at work.
5. Turn your phone silent
The constant ring of your phone can interrupt your workflow and keep you from focusing on the task you have to accomplish. If you easily get distracted by noise or vibration from your environment, then you must switch your phone to silent mode. You can do the same for your email notifications. You can also shut down your social media accounts to prevent them from lighting your screen.
6. Check the room temperature
Very hot or freezing environment can affect your focus and productivity. The Helsiniki University of Technology in Finland found that the optimal room temperature to work in is 71 degrees. Meanwhile, Cornell University discovered that workers are most productive in an environment that has a room temperature between 67 to 77 degrees. If your office always has the AC on, don’t forget to bring a sweater to keep you warm.\
7. Play some music
It’s more fun and enjoyable to work in an environment that plays your favorite music. Background noise can be highly distracting. You can tune them out by plugging your earphones and playing a few beats. Ensure the volume of the music plays at a comfortable level so if it won’t damage your ears.
Grab a pen and a paper to jot what’s on your mind. If your mind is full of ideas or swimming in lists of what you have to do, list them down to make way for other responsibilities. Writing frees your thinking space and relaxes your brain. It’s also a great way to retain information without memorizing a bunch of words.
It’s possible to achieve productivity without spending money on meditation classes. You only have to practice and train your mindset. Practicing these habits is a great place to start. Once you master them, you have the power to take charge of your time and energy.