Most of us are creatures of habit. In fact, we are essentially the very habits we keep. Most of us working folks try our very best to keep a healthy daily routine, at least for the working weekdays. We tell actively ourselves to sleep early, and wake up early enough. We hit the snooze button to get ourselves a couple of minutes worth of rest, before finally getting ready to go to work. These are for most part the habits that keep us right on track with our daily professional endeavours.
Still, we have particular habits that keep us out of track – habits we often refer to as distractions. Especially in this age of digital distractions, Facebook, Twitter, and a dozen other social media (never mind Youtube and Reddit) take a huge chunk of our time, and all for no functional purpose whatsoever. Because it is so much easier to fall into these bad habits than build good ones at work, and generally in life, many of the successful people of today are trying to actively build on patterns that positively shape success. If you often find yourself especially distracted during your work hours, here are a few things you might want to give a go to increase your productivity.
· Practice Working within a 90 Minute-Limit
Contrary to popular belief, longer work hours, shorter breaks, and taking no vacation do not make a productive work habit. A related research that was conducted at Florida State University suggests that elite athletes and musicians create their best work within an undisrupted 90-minute session. Once 90 minutes is up, they take a break and reset for another 90-minute session. Whether you are filing paper works, building, or writing a blog, you might want to see how this works for you. A 15-20 minute break in between session should be sufficient enough recess to refresh your mind.
Despite being among the most effective tool in keeping in touch with friends and professional colleagues, various social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter has become a potent distraction and a certified time consumer for many cubicle-bound workers. Needless to say, this unhealthy habit of repeatedly scrolling through news feeds can simply be avoided by not logging into these sites during work hours. Unfortunately, such is not the case as many social media sites have become full blown addictions of many office workers. As technology created this problem, technology too resolves it. Anti-Social is a piece of software that is designed to momentarily turn off social media elements in internet, thus eliminating tweet-post-pic distraction during the office hours. Anti-Social can of course be disabled after office hours.
· Avoid Unnecessary Checking of Emails
Apart from social media distractions, it is often the menial task of constantly checking, rechecking, and replying to emails that wastes precious office hours, not to mention brain power. “Email in the morning is how you travel to 2pm”, says Microsoft program manager Scott Hanselman. A productive morning is likely to set the tone for the rest of the day so instead of wasting your mornings scouring through emails, just give it a quick scan and save replying for later in the afternoon. Know that anything urgent is most likely to first thing in the morning, if not eventually.
Joel Mayer is a professional freelancer who writes about coaching and the latest coaching trends in the coaching world.