You know the drill – you come in to the office in the morning ready to breeze through all your tasks. You sit down at your desk knowing exactly in what order you will work on things. Your day officially begins as you sort through emails and voice mails and get the morning tasks out of the way.

Suddenly, you realize that three hours have gone by, and you’ve gotten interrupted by colleagues, been given new assignments by your boss, and been distracted by phone calls. And your tasks? They are nowhere near done.

Most days at the office don’t always go as planned. If you find that it’s a constant struggle to stay focused on your projects, you just need to adjust your daily routine with a few simple steps. You also need to help your team stay focused on their projects. Here’s a quick breakdown on how to do this.

Staying focused on your projects is easy. You can do so by:

Writing out your plan, and keeping it in front of you
It may be planned out in your head, but physically having a plan in front of you will allow you to be more productive. Mark down your goals for the day and literally cross them out as you complete them. Having that piece of paper (or e-note) will help you stay focused.

Minimizing your chances of getting interrupted
While working, you are very likely to get interrupted by colleagues, phone calls, and emails. Stay focused on your projects by being proactive and reducing these interruptions. When working on important aspects of your projects, you might want to put your phone on DND mode and let it go to your voice mail. Set up a priority inbox for your email, and only pay attention to important messages. Close your office door or plug in some headphones with music – these will reduce the chances of people chatting you up.

Taking breaks
Take little breaks from working to get your mind of the projects and stress for a couple of minutes. Go for a walk, or at least, try not to eat your lunch while working.

Reminding yourself why the work is important
The work you are doing may seem pointless to you, but there is a reason why you are doing it. Remind yourself why whatever you are working on is important. In the end, the work you do will have some kind of positive impact on your company.

You also need to help your team stay focused on their projects. Look out for pointers on this in my next blog post!

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