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Startup Tips

Pay Attention: 4 Tips to Help You Focus on Your Workload

You’re an incredibly busy person. You’ve started a company and there’s never enough time in the day to get everything done. No matter what you do there’s always emails to send, meetings to schedule, marketing material that needs to get signed off on, and a truckload of other tasks to check off the list. Not only that, but you’re human. Your attention wanders, you get distracted looking at tweets, getting lost in a new idea for the company, or planning the weekend. It’s understandable, but those moments of stolen time can’t be taken back. So, how do you focus on the priority that is your business?

1. Pomodoro Method

Splitting your workload into small chunks of time allows you to complete tasks without being overwhelmed by the clock or getting lost in it. Enter the Pomodoro Method, a time management method that’s been around since the 80s and continues to grow in popularity. Developed by Francesco Cirillo, the technique has you set a timer into intervals – traditionally twenty-five minutes but small intervals work too – that are separated by short breaks. By doing this, you can properly focus on the task at hand knowing a break is incoming. Why tackle the whole pie right off the bat when one piece at a time will do the job?

2. Cut Out Social Media

Social media negatively impacts are productivity. We know this. Spending time on twitter, instagram, facebook, or any website that allows us to keep scrolling endlessly is bound to eat into whatever we’re trying to get done. How can it not? They’re constantly being updated with news, stories, videos, and more. It’s easy to get lost in the forest that is the digital space, but by the time you extricate yourself from it, you could have easily lost a few hours of prime productivity. Do yourself a favour and cut back the time you spend online or, if you can, get rid of it entirely. Not only will it make it easier to focus, its going to ease your mental health.

3. Roll with the Punches

When your ambitious and motivated, your to-list can end up a mile long in no time. You know what needs to get done, so you’re going to do it! Unfortunately, just because you have aims to blast through twenty tasks in one day doesn’t mean that the universe agrees. Some days the internet will go out or the line at the bank has slowed to a snail’s pace. Maybe something the previous day you thought was done properly is causing problems and needs to be taken care of immediately. If you let it, interruptions in your workflow like these can frustrate you to the point of losing focus. When these things happen, and they will, take a deep breath and understand its just a part of running a business. Delegate what you can, take care of what you have control over, and move on. As they say, tomorrow’s another day.

4. Take a Break

You’re not a machine. Nobody can work twelve to fourteen hours with barely any sleep and hope to accomplish greatness, whether you’re sitting at a desk or pouring concrete. You’ll always feel the need to push yourself, to do more, and that’s good! Use that energy, harness that motivation, but don’t let it rule your life. You need time away from the business too, time to recharge your batteries. Sometimes it’s a simple walk in the park or a half-hour massage. Other times it’s a day off to do nothing. Take these moments when you need them. Your mind and body will thank you for it. When your back and refreshed, you’ll give your work the attention it needs.

 

Everyone focuses best at different times and in different ways. The suggestions above are just that, suggestions. Find what works for you, stick to it, and your business will only benefit because of it.