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Productivity at Work: Our Friend Focus.

Productivity at Work: Our Friend Focus.

Over the last few weeks you’ve been introduced to Des and Ali. I’m a huge fan of them both. This week’s post reintroduces you to another good friend of Inspo, focus.

I remember in the first two years of Inspo I’d be afraid of getting asked the question, ‘are you busy?’. I doubted whether I was truly busy. However the crux of the matter was not busyness, it was focus.

I was putting in the hours however I just wasn’t focussed enough. I was easily distracted. By my phone, by people (I’m a people watcher) and by the new found joy of being my own boss.

This year I’ve made a concerted effort to focus more in my days. This has allowed me to get more done. And to a higher quality.

Our commitment to our friendship with focus can be just as fruitful as our commitment to our friendship with Des and Ali. Unfortunately, distraction is all too keen to stand in the way of this friendship.

The average Irish person work 40.7 hours a week. In that same week, the average person will spend approximately 22 hours on their phone. How much can those 22 hours of phone usage get in the way of focus, and productivity? Potentially, lots, given research has found that we pick up our phone 58 times at work each day.

Microsoft released a study in 2015 on human focus and attention. The study, admittedly contested in some quarters, found that human attention has decreased in the period between 2000 and 2015 from 12 seconds to 8 seconds.

Our friend focus is becoming ever more challenged in the modern world.

So how you do bring focus with you to the office more? Here’s three ways to consider.

Use Airplane Mode:

When it’s possible for you, put your phone on airplane mode. Allow yourself time and space to get stuck into that piece of work uninterrupted.

Use rewards:

It’s worked since the dawn of time.

For example, do you like a coffee at work? If so, place a piece of work before that cup of coffee. Your coffee becomes your motivational force. This same coffee will taste infinitely nicer for the work being done before it.

Identify your ‘big win’:

Each day there’s almost always going to be one thing over the rest that will make that day a success. Identify it early and make sure that, above all else, that items gets the focus it deserves. Your day will have a brighter feel for that item getting done.

Focus is a great friend of ours. It will always be so. If we care for the friendship.

What are you going to do to invest in your friendship with focus this week?

If you have any feedback on this post or if you’d like to learn more about Inspo, please contact john@inspo.ie.