Use These 6 Tips to Limit Distractions While Getting Work Done

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Thanks to technology, there are more distractions than ever before while you’re trying to get work done. Many people do most of their work from computers, from which they can access the internet, chat with coworkers, or browse interesting articles. Most people also carry smartphones, which are constantly ringing with emails, phone calls, texts, and app notifications. If you aren’t careful, it’s easy to lose entire hours to these devices and realize you’ve accomplished nothing. However, there are some great ways you can face as minimal distractions as possible while working.

Schedule your day

The first step you can take to minimize distractions when you need to get tasks done is carefully scheduling out your day. Set aside time at the beginning of the week to plan out your schedule for each day. You may have to adjust it as other priorities come up, but planning out your day as specifically as possible helps you focus on what needs to get done every hour.

Ditch the smartphone

One of the biggest distractions is your smartphone. Know when it’s time to set it aside and focus on what you need to accomplish. Instead of keeping your smartphone on your desk, put it away in a bag or drawer or somewhere else that you won’t be tempted to look at it every few minutes. Even if you’re just checking a single message, you’ll likely also check any social notifications you have, some emails, and plenty of other distractions. Avoid using your smartphone as much as possible when trying to concentrate on a task.

Utilize extensions

There are plenty of extension available on your browser, especially if you use Google Chrome, that can help you stay focused. Some extensions block specific websites for set amounts of time or won’t let you access sites until you complete whatever you’re currently working on. Other extensions keep track of how much time you’re spending on each task, so you know if you’re completely your work efficiently.

Ignore email

Thanks to technology, you can check your email at all times and often receive push notifications while you’re focusing on something else at your desk. Avoid the temptation to check your email while doing something else; if it’s an email, it can wait. Consider turning off email notifications and closing the window so you only check it at set times. Encourage people to schedule calls with you instead of sending multiple emails back and forth to discuss something.

Change your workspace

Many people can get bored by where they’re trying to do work and become distracted since they do not have fresh scenery. If possible, move to other locations to get work done. Investing in a standing desk and using it intermittently is also helpful when trying to regain your focus. Take time to invest in decorating your office space in a pleasing manner and regularly change it so you have new views and surroundings. If you work at home, make sure you have a quiet, designated area to work in so you do not get distracted by home responsibilities.

Minimize socialization

When you’re working, it can be incredibly tempting to message your coworkers, friends, or family. You might find yourself chatting to the person sitting next to you or running into someone in the hallway and spending a considerable amount of time discussing your weekend with them. While these socializations are important to a healthy social and professional life, it’s also important that you recognize there’s a time and place for them. Keep long conversations to breaks or outside of work hours. Focus on work while you’re there.

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5 Best Productivity Apps

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Technology can greatly improve your productivity both at work and at home. It doesn’t matter what task you have to complete; there is probably an app out there that can seriously help you out. If there’s a way to get something done more efficiently and make your tasks easier to complete, you’ll likely want to use this resource. We’ve taken the liberty of reviewing the top five productivity apps so you can find the right one for you and see the difference it makes in your productivity.

  1. RescueTime

RescueTime is a time-tracking app that helps you track your work habits and patterns. The app measures the time you spend on your computer and the time when you get distracted by some other task. At the end of the week, RescueTime creates reports on your productivity rating. It also produces charts and graphs with information you can use to adjust your behavior.

  1. FocusList

FocusList is an app that helps you plan your day, track your time, and stay focused on your daily activities. The app is based on the Pomodoro technique. Once you select the task you want to undertake; you’ll get to work on it in 25-minute sessions separated by five-minute breaks. Later in the day, you can review the time you spent on every task to track your productivity.

  1. Doodle

This mobile app takes the pain out of scheduling events and meetings. Here’s how the app works; you set up an event, propose potential times, and invite your colleagues. They then select the option that works for them, and the app finds the time that works for everyone. For easier scheduling, you can sync Doodle to your Outlook or Google calendar. No more email threads trying to find the best time for a quick meeting or call!

  1. Buffer

Buffer is one of the best tools for scheduling posts on sites such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter. The platform is straightforward; all you have to do is link your business accounts to a single email, and you will be able to push out status updates and tweets instantly. Buffer is available for iOS and Android. Users can also use the app on the web if they prefer working on a desktop.

  1. Todoist

Todoist is a powerful task management app for iPhone, iPad, Android, Mac, Windows, and various internet browsers. This app enables users to create tasks and subtasks, add priority labels, share items with colleagues, and set up recurring events.

Have you interacted with any of these productivity apps? If yes, how does the app you use help you manage your day-to-day life? Let us know in the comments below.

How to Be Productive When Working from Home

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If you work from home, it can be hard to stay productive for the entire day, especially if you have other responsibilities calling for your attention. Sure, it feel great to be able to earn income in your pajamas but you need to instill proper strategies to make sure you don’t give in to bad habits. Otherwise, you could fritter away your time and miss important deadlines. To get the most out of your at-home work situation, use these powerful tips and techniques.

Rise early

Even though you might be able to wake up at noon, you should consider getting up earlier. When you get up early, you have the whole day ahead of you. You will feel more confident and motivated to get your work done, even if you are typically a night person. That way, you limit the temptation of wasting time and procrastination. It sets the tone for the rest of the day and helps you get your work done.

Hygiene

Have you ever had a day where you decided not to shower, shave, or otherwise groom yourself in a way that made you feel confident? If you did, you probably weren’t as productive as you could have been. If you treat yourself with respect, you’ll be more motivated to act accordingly.

Space

Control your space that you work in. Whether you work in your office, living room, or other location, make sure it promotes productivity. Consider posting your goals on the wall, or positioning your desk to face your great view (if you have one). Get accessories that set up your office space. It’s incredibly helpful to set aside space as your office in your home so your home life and work life do not blend more than you can avoid. The better you feel in your space, the better you will perform.

Focus

If you work at home, a lot of distractions can interfere with your work day. Your kids might interrupt you. Your partner may want to talk about your weekend plans. Perhaps the phone is ringing off the hook. You need to establish clear boundaries with loved ones and the outside world that you are not to be disturbed when working. That way you can focus on the task at hand.

Time constraints

You don’t work in a traditional office, but you need a system. Consider a set block of time that you work within and don’t cheat; stay true to your schedule.

When it comes to working at home, it can be a gift or a curse. It all depends on how you handle it. If you fail to use the right strategies, you might be less productive than possible. However, if you use the advice above you can enjoy getting more done in less time than ever before.