There are numerous distractions when you’re either working in an office, store or from home. As the world moves towards remote working and working from home, the distractions can increase tenfold. We’ve written about the top 3 distractions you can encounter when working and how you can avoid them.
Talkative Coworkers or Spouse
We’ve all experienced talkative coworkers, either in the staff kitchen, by the coffee machine or even when you’re deep into work.
Although having verbal interactions with your coworkers can be a good thing as it builds comradery & friendships, it can also be a huge detriment to your work output.
If you’re working at home along with a spouse this can become an even bigger problem as there’s no one else to stop the constant chattering (your boss).
There are a few ways to tackle this problem:
- Have a discreet conversation with them. It doesn’t mean you’re going to break up a friendship, you just need to explain it’s impacting your work. This works in any workplace, even at home.
- Use a pair of headphones. This may not be allowed, depending on your workplace but it can be a really useful tool, especially if you’re working from home. You could also use an app like Brain.fm to seriously improve your focus.
- If things really become a problem then you can always speak to your boss or team leader.
Dealing With Emails & Instant Messages
Dealing with emails and instant messages is not only time consuming but can also be pointless at times. If you work in a busy office you’re probably dealing with a large number of emails per day. This includes sending emails yourself. If you work from home or run your own business you're probably dealing with a lot of instant messages as well.
Or recommendations to tackle this problem are:
- Constrict your email and instant messaging usage to three times per day. For example once in the morning, once midday and once at the end of the day. This is a great method and allows you the time to get deep into a workflow to get more done.
- If you’re getting numerous emails from people in your office then just go and speak with them and deal with the issue there and then. If someone isn’t in your office, give them a quick call. This saves a lot of back and forth via email.
Let’s face it the majority of us think we can do more than one thing at the same time, but research proves that this just isn't true. The brain can not perform more than one ‘thinking task’ at a time.
If you’re trying to work on more than one task at a time you’re going to be very distracted and very unproductive.
Our solution to this is simple. Block out the times of day you are going to work on a certain task and stick to that time. A good adage to this is to start your day with the hardest task, this will allow you to get it done when your brain is fresh and end your day with easier tasks.
Another trick here is to take a short 5-10 minute break in between tasks, this allows for the mind to reset. You could incorporate a mini office workout or if you're at home, 5 minutes of push-ups or star jumps are a great way to reset and get the blood flowing.
Perform Your Best
Eliminating distractions from your workday not only allows you to get more done but studies show an increase in happiness, higher quality of work and helps you be more motivated.