Switch Everything Off
Mobile phones are the biggest cause of distraction in the office. Switching the phones off, or keeping them on ‘silent’ is one way to avoid some of these distractions. You do not want the phone constantly buzzing from social media notifications and chats. Studies published in the Journal Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews show that working with no distractions improves your concentration and performance significantly. Let social media wait until after work.
Turn Off Onscreen Notifications
Email notifications come second on the list of enemies of concentration. The sad thing about this is that some of the emails and notifications you get are unrelated to work. Studies also show that the average office worker in the UK checks his/her email 36 times per hour. Going through the emails and trying to negotiate irrelevant deals are killing your productivity. Turning off onscreen notifications and adding no response necessary (NRN) at the end of each email can help improve your concentration too.
Set Realistic Targets
You don’t need an overbearing boss breathing fire on your back to get things done in the office. Creating a list of goals and targets to achieve by the end of the day, and working towards that is one of the best ways to avoid distractions at work. The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants advises employees to create SMART (specific, measurable, appropriate, realistic, and time-bound) goals each day. This will help you focus more on work and avoid anything that doesn’t matter during that time period.
Take a Break
Proper time management holds the key to success in many office setups. Although you may have tons and tons of work to do, your body (especially the mind) needs to catch a breath between tasks. That said, it would be advisable to take a 5 min break after spending 25 minutes on a task. Consider 15-minute breaks after 2-hour work cycles too. Only take the break after completing a task, and not before it. Do a lap in the office, walk around, or simply look somewhere else apart from your computer screen during the break time.
Take on Mental Exercise
Moderate-intensity exercise is highly recommended for improved mental health and functions. It is when you exercise that the brain releases chemicals that boost its functions, as well as concentration. Studies conducted in the Harvard Medical School show that taking a 30-minute exercise every day for five days is enough to keep your brain healthy.
Add Some Greenery in The Office
Many people will walk outside to breathe some fresh air and de-stress. One of the reasons you come back feeling relaxed is because the air outside is cleaner and oxygen-rich as compared to indoors. If you cannot get time to go outside, why not bring outdoors inside. Adding a few green plants in the workplace provides an excellent way to purify the air. Green plants release oxygen while taking in carbon dioxide. Breathing the fresh oxygen released is calming and helps improve your brainpower.
Get Enough Sleep
One of the main reasons that people find it hard to focus at work is due to lack of good quality sleep. Ensure that you are getting enough sleep by going to bed at a reasonable time and keeping to a sleep schedule, this will ensure that your circadian rhythm is in good check. Make sure that your bed is comfortable so that you can drift off easily, take a look at Tempurpedic mattress reviews if you are due an upgrade.
Swap Your Regular Coffee with An Isotonic Drink
Although the mid-morning coffee might seem to help you concentrate, it comes with a myriad of other effects too. That said, swapping the afternoon coffee with something mild but with a dose of glucose will go a long way in keeping your alert and motivated. This eliminates the coffee breath experienced after having a steaming cup of coffee.