You find yourself in isolation, home-bound, kids running around. You know you have the ability to be organised, in fact, you’ve always been organised and on top of things within an office environment, so how much more productivity can be achieved working from home?
You put a to-do list together, all to be completed by 5PM. Achievable? 100%!
A 2PM check-in and you panic when you realise you can’t quite articulate what has been done within the past 5 hours.
If this is you, perhaps you need to take 5 and identify your distractions!
According to a University of California Irvine study, “it takes an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds to get back to the task.”
This means, for every three distractions, you’ve lost an hour of productivity!!! How many times are you being distracted in your day?
Here are a few common distractions:
1. Social Media
Your phone chimes, yes, another social media update. It’s so easy to do, one click and you can see a friend update, and while you’re there, why not a quick scroll, just to get you up to speed with how everyone else is self-distracting.
Did you know, the average person spends approximately 2.5hrs a day on social media?
Imagine, in a week, this is over 17 hours, this equates to approximately 70 hours in a month! Imagine what you can do with an additional 70 hours?!
2. Incoming News at your Fingertips
With a global phenomenon currently taking place, live COVID19 global updates, how often are you finding yourself jumping from one news report to another? Of course, it’s important to stay up to date with what is going on, current restrictions etc, but the real question is, how many times do you find yourself refreshing the news? How many versions of the news is necessary to read? How many perspectives of the news do you need to ready up on? The addiction is real….. perhaps a distraction?
3. Unproductive Online Meetings
How many meetings/gatherings are you being invited to? I mean, it’s so tempting. Put on a nice top, fix up your hair, still be wearing your PJ’s waist down and jump into various chatrooms, both corporate and personal. Attending meetings has never been so easy, and perhaps a lot more fun. The mute button super-handy and convenient when you want to cover up the sound of a mid-meeting snack or pausing the video while in attendance to quickly re-adjust, fix your hair or quickly inhale a mouthful of food. I know you all know what I’m talking about…
How many have you said yes to? Do these meetings have time restrictions, so that you can schedule in within your planned to-do list? Are you automatically saying yes to every meeting? Are all these meetings going to help you complete what needs to be done? It’s important to note the relevance of each meeting/gathering you’re invited to, and not feel the pressure of defaulting with a yes and acceptance to every meeting.
4. Incoming Calls
Just because you are working from home, does not mean that you should feel obligated to pick up all incoming. Would you do that in an office setting? Ask yourself, is picking up that call necessary or a distraction? Is there an alternate time the incoming call can be better scheduled in your timetable?
You need to be in control of how you utilise your time. Take control of your incomings!
5. Home Distractions
Working within a home environment has many distractions! Unfinished home projects, temptation to bake, fix up the garden, sort out the garage, rearrange the wardrobe, spring clean, shift furniture around and the list goes on. You can allocate time for these projects, but without following a schedule, these can easily eat into your time, contributing to a productivity issue.
Achieve your Goals, Eliminate Distractions
In order to eliminate distractions, recognition and admission are important. Are you achieving what you set out to complete daily? Can you list your distractions? Do you truly want to become more productive and achieve more out of your day? If you have answered yes to any of these questions, here are a few practical tips.
- Prior to your week commencing, write down a list of everything you would like to achieve within that week. Make sure this list is measureable and achievable
- Create a schedule/timetable by the hour, outlining daily outcomes
- Mark off what has been completed end of every day, what is still outstanding and whether or not completion of outstanding task/s need to be incorporated into next day to-do list
- At the end of the week, reflect on week, have outcomes been achieved, if not, why not? Recognise any distractions and come up with a strategy of how to eliminate these distractions (this does not include children)
Remember, eliminating distractions is a journey. It requires focus, concentration, motivation and clear goals.
If you are struggling to focus and/or overwhelmed with distraction, we have many professional, qualified, experienced Counsellors, Psychotherapists and Therapists available to help you.
Get Well. Be Inspired. Live Life.
– Wellspiration Team