8 Tips to Help You Stay Focused
March 30, 2022
Sometimes all it takes is one glance out your window to see the sunshine or other people enjoying themselves to make you wish you were outside enjoying the day rather than stuck inside in front of a screen.
When those blue-sky days happen to be a work day, the urge can be pretty strong to ditch your lengthy to-do list and play hooky from your job.
But for most of us, that’s not an option. Whether you’re working remotely or sitting in your office, you might be left wondering how to stay focused at work. The secret? Mentally preparing yourself for the tasks at hand.
Here are some easy tips on how to stay focused (even when you’d rather be heading outside to play).
Take a hard look at the spot where you do the bulk of your work. Whether it’s an office space, an at-home desk or a table in your favorite coffee shop, what is in your line of sight?
If there is a television, a window inviting you outside or a heavy traffic area that draws your eye, consider turning your space around to help you focus.
When thinking through how to concentrate on work, be sure you also have everything you need to do your job within arm’s reach. Keep water, coffee or another beverage at your desk so you won’t be tempted to wander off in search of it later.
Distractions are everywhere, whether you’re working from home or in an office. You can learn how to focus better by shutting down some of the biggest distractions before you dive into your work. Try these three tips on how to stay focused:
Separate yourself: If you’re working from home with others in the house, try setting up your workspace in an area away from them. A separate room with a door is best, but any spot away from others that will allow you to concentrate should work. The kitchen table might be a comfortable spot, but it’s the place where you’re most likely to be interrupted.
Mute the noise: One of the quickest ways to figure out how to stay focused is by turning off the background distractions. Shut off the television. Close your windows if you are in an area with a lot of street noise. If you need sound, try instrumental music on low volume or white noise. Need total silence? Try noise-canceling headphones.
Ditch social media: Checking your favorite social media sites can be a huge timewaster when you’re trying to get work done and it doesn’t take much to get sucked down a rabbit hole of comments. To help your mind learn how to stay focused at work, shut off your notifications and close those tabs so you can focus on the task at hand.
Sometimes you might feel like you need a little help learning how to concentrate at work. That could mean a shot of espresso for a caffeine boost, or a supplement like the n* by Nutrilite™ Slay the Day gummies or drink shot. Powered with ginseng, these help support your concentration when you need it most.†
A little planning can help you figure out how to stay focused and get your work done faster. Creating a daily work list allows you to organize your tasks, then cross them off as you get them done. This way, you can focus on one thing at a time.
Break the list into pieces. If you’ve got phone calls, video chats, conference calls and meetings planned, mark those down with the times attached so you can make sure you are prepped for each event. Schedule your lunch and break times, too.
Learning how to improve focus through whole foods can benefit your body in more ways than just cognitive function. Many options include nutrients that can support your brain and keep you energized through a long workday. Experts suggest that berries, walnuts, fish high in omega-3 fatty acids, and green, leafy vegetables may be the best choices. If you want to learn more about how to stay focused by fueling with whole foods, check out our article, How to Support Your Brain Health: 6 Useful Tips.
Whether you take a spin class before you log on or head to the gym when the day is through, exercising before or after work can benefit your attention during the day. Studies have shown that even just a brisk one-hour walk or other types of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise twice a week can support cognitive function. So, consider waking up an hour earlier or packing a gym bag before heading to work and prioritize a good sweat session when you can.
This might come as a shock, but if you’re looking for answers on how to stay focused at work, short breaks may help. In fact, studies have shown that constant stimulation (without stops) may lead our brain to classify them as “unimportant,” which can hinder awareness. When you take a break, you may be giving your brain a chance to refresh while also supporting energy, productivity, and focus when it really matters. Consider going for a walk, taking a shower, meditating, cleaning, calling a friend, or sneaking in a quick stretch.
One of the best tips on how to stay focused is to make sure you’re rewarding yourself by getting out into the sunshine when it’s time to take a break. A brisk walk, a short bike ride, or just a lunchtime stroll are all great ways to relax and recharge. That mental break will help sharpen your focus when you head back to work.
We all have days when the urge to get outdoors is strong. With a little planning and a few strategic changes, you can shift your focus to getting your work done quickly so you’ll be free to head outside and enjoy the rest of your day.
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