How to Concentrate in the Workplace
It would seem that concentration is a rare commodity nowadays.
We’re more willing to be distracted by the ‘shiny-shiny’ than ever before.
There’s so much vying for our attention whether we’re at home or at work.
Short attention spans might be down to our fast paced, digitised world but concentration in the workplace is still important.
The good news is that your ability to concentrate is not an innate gift that you either have or you don’t.
It’s a normal, everyday skill and there are plenty of ways to improve it. Here’s how:
It sounds a little new world but a quick jump into the realm of mindfulness can actually help you get ready for the task ahead of you.
Sit with your back straight and your hands cupped gently in your lap.
Close your eyes and take two or three mindful breaths, concentrating on nothing else.
This should help you to centre yourself and prepare you for what you need to do, a bit like taking a deep breath before jumping off the high board.
Focus is Important
While it’s a bit like saying chocolate is vital to a Kit-Kat, understanding what you are focusing on and why is important.
Distractions can get in the way of any task in the workplace but if you have a solid connection with what you are trying to achieve and a clear focus on the end result it can help keep you on track.
Getting Rid of Distractions
According to some research, we can spend as much as 2 hours a day on social media and that includes while we’re at work.
If you want to really improve your concentration, turn off your smartphone and don’t check your emails for at least half an hour while you get the job done.
You’ll actually be surprised how distractions like this can eat into your productivity and how things dramatically improve once you get rid of them.
Caffeine and Concentration
Getting some coffee inside you does, in fact, give you a concentration boost according to the research.
Too much, however, can make you a little jittery and have the opposite effect.
If you find yourself flagging, something that often happens in the afternoon following lunch, a quick cuppa can add a little extra gusto to your concentration quotient.
Create a Work Friendly Atmosphere
There are external forces that work against concentrating on an important task.
You might, for example, want to take a look at the temperature in the office.
Too warm and you can feel drowsy, too cold and you may also be unable to focus.
Background noise can also be an issue.
A lot depends on how you concentrate better in the workplace – some people like to put on the music, others prefer a completely quiet environment.
Find what works for you and create the environment that allows you to concentrate better.
Anyone who offers advice about improving productivity will mention taking regular breaks.
It gives you the chance to step away and refocus before coming back with renewed energy.
However good we are at concentrating, we all loose focus over time.
The key here is to build in distractions which keep your concentration at a maximum while your doing a set task.
Get up and make a coffee, stretch your legs, anything, just take a quick break.
Then get back to work.
Finally, we all know that when we’re feeling healthy we tend to perform better.
Making the right food choices and getting enough exercise all build up our stamina and our ability to concentrate.
If you are having trouble with focusing at work, it might be time to take a look at your own wellbeing and see if there aren’t a few things you can do to be more active as well as a healthier eater.