Do you have a deadline fast approaching? An exam? An assessment? A presentation coming up? Are you feeling distracted?
We all know the feeling. Something super important is coming up but someone or something keeps coming up and breaking your concentration. You have your revision schedule; carefully planned in colours and everything! But you sit there and nothing’s going in, your phone starts pinging with texts from your friends, multiple Facebook and Twitter notifications which must be checked, and your aunt just posted a picture of her new puppy. Suddenly, 3 hours has passed and you’re ready for some food. Sound familiar?
A few little things that you tell yourself ‘only 5 minutes’ build up and eat away at valuable work time. Although it is hard to sit down and concentrate there are a few things you can do to help yourself and get the most out of your work time.
ORGANISE YOUR SPACE
Before even starting to work set yourself targets.
Organise the space around you, make sure you have everything you need to succeed. Get yourself a large glass of water to stay hydrated. Make sure you have all stationary, books and assistance to hand so that you don’t find yourself getting up every few minutes. As well as keeping water next to you having a piece of fruit like a banana can be a quick fix hunger and energy supplier. Ensure that you remove typical distractions, whether that be the TV, a magazine or whatever make sure it isn’t near your workspace. Before you work make sure the space your working it suits you and will help you.
SET TIMES AND BREAKS
Setting times for your work is also beneficial. Don’t work for hours without breaks. Set goals. Say to yourself, ‘this is what I want to have achieved by this time.’ This is key to success and getting the most out of your work time. It stops you getting regularly distracted if you set your breaks out. Setting goals within times pushes you to achieve more within your set time. Not only should you organise your work time but also spend time planning your breaks. Plan five minutes to check your social media so you don’t get carried away, or 5 minutes to stretch or walk around. Allow your body to actually have a break.
Be firm with yourself. Tell yourself what you’re going to achieve and stick to it. Get the support of your family and friends. Tell them that this is your time and you have things to get done. They will support your goals to achieve. The quality of your relationships with people determine the quality of your life. Don’t ice people out because you need to focus set times to spend with them and relax but allow them to support you so you are able to succeed.
KEEP YOUR PHONE OFF
This is something many of us find hard to do. Turning your phone can almost be like removing a limb for some people. However it stops you ‘just checking for a minute’ or replying to that one text. Turning your phone off and even putting it in a different room has such an impact on the quality of work you do. It allows you to focus and be more driven to get your work done and be able to check it once you’ve completed your set target. Checking it only on your breaks will be beneficial to making the most out of your work time.
Although this is unusual it is key. Getting enough sleep impacts your level of work massively. It makes you more focused and means you can get more out of each work session. But, rest doesn’t just mean sleep. Resting in your breaks is allowing you mind to switch off. To stop thinking about that final point you just wrote down. Check that after your break. Use your break to rest let your mind relax, stretch, do a short yoga session or go a walk. Letting your body rest improves the level of your work and improves the standard of it too.
Doing these five things can help you benefit from your set work time. They allow you to achieve more and improve the way you work as well as let you rest. Making your goals achievable is key. Clear your workspace, set your targets, remove distractions and SMASH IT!