How to Get Focused
Have you ever found yourself sitting at your computer “working” but when it was time to shut down, you hadn’t really accomplished much? This happens because of a lack of focus. In order to have a thriving life and business one of the main skills needed is focus. But what does it mean to focus? And how do you actually do it?
Webster’s dictionary describes focus as, directed attention. This definition is simple yet it fully encompasses its essence. Focus is when one thing has your attention for a specified purpose. Though the definition is simple, people struggle with actually completing the process, for a variety of reasons. So, let’s discuss some tips that will finetune your ability to focus.
1 Identify What You Need to Focus On
This may seem elementary, but it is the foundation upon which your focus will be built. How can you direct your attention to something, if you don’t know specifically where that attention will be directed? It is impossible. So, you need to explicitly identify what you need to focus on at any given moment. What is the one thing that needs your directed attention right now?
Once you identify what you need to focus on, there will be no guessing as to what you should be doing. This first step of identification gives your attention a direction. It gives you a bulls-eye to shoot your arrow towards.
2 Set a Time Frame for Your Focus
Next you need to set a time frame for your focus. Why? With a deadline present, you have more incentive to complete your task within the designated time. Without a time frame, hours can be spent on a task, that may have taken less time. Setting a time frame also allows you to understand your work capacity. Sometimes, people try to work for 2 hours straight, but they actually do not yet have the focus capacity to do so.
Focus capacity is just like any other muscle. The more you work it, the better you get at it. For example, right now you may only be able to focus for 20 minutes, not 2 hours. But as you continue to work your focus muscle, you will get stronger and the amount of time you are able to focus will increase. If you struggle with focusing for extended periods of time, break your focus time down into smaller increments.
One of the most popular time management techniques that is centered around setting small time frames is The Pomodoro Technique. Here’s how it works:
Select a task to complete
Set a timer for 25 minutes
After 25 minutes of working on the task, take a 3-5 minute break
Repeat this process 4 times
After the 4th pomodoro, take a longer break (25-30 minutes)
Repeat as often as necessary
You can also modify the time frames in the technique to accommodate for your current focus capacity. This technique will increase your productivity, as long as you are not distracted during the process.
3 Remove Distractions
One of the biggest hindrances to being able to focus is distractions; and they come in so many different forms. Social media, tv, phone calls, texts, emails, people and the list goes on and on. If you want to get focused, you will absolutely have to get rid of distractions. This will take some level of self examination first to understand what it is that distracts you specifically, because everyone is different.
After you know what distracts you, be intentional in removing those things. Even as I am writing this blog, I had to cut my phone off because it was distracting me from this task. If you have to turn off notifications or keep your email closed on your laptop, do what is necessary to remove the distraction. This will skyrocket your focus and productivity!
4 Create and Communicate Boundaries Around Your Focus
Have you ever heard the phrase, “you teach people how to treat you”? Well you have to teach people how to respect your time. If you know that you will be focused on a specific task during a certain time frame, let the people in your environment know, so that they will not interrupt you.
If you work from home, set a time frame that you will be working. And let your partner know when you will be working so that they will not interrupt your focus. You must create the boundary and also communicate the boundary with those in your environment. Communicate your boundaries as often as necessary, so that they will be respected, so you can focus.
5 Practice Mindfulness in All Areas of Life
Focusing is a practice in mindfulness. Being mindful simply means being conscious or aware of something. When you focus, you are being mindful of your actions in the moment. When you begin to practice mindfulness in other, and eventually all areas, of your life, it will increase your ability to be mindful in the area of focus.
I’m sure that you want to have a thriving life and business, so now is the time to work on mastering your focus. If you are ready to focus on launching your brand or business, schedule a consultation with me so we can discuss how I can help you in the process of launching
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