Facing distractions in the office can often be very off-putting, killing your productivity and leaving you feeling annoyed and uninspired. An environment with a lot of distractions could even be damaging for your career as your efficiency levels fall, which isn’t good news at all. Here are a few tactics for dealing with the kinds of distractions you might face.
If you are surrounded by people who are talking when you just need to focus and write a report, it’s almost impossible to shut them out. The only option is to use noise-canceling headphones, which will take out most of the noise – but then you risk missing your phone ringing, or getting reprimanded by your boss for not taking part in the office culture.
Another way to approach it could be to ask for a quiet space to work in. This could be an unused office, or some companies will even have a dedicated quiet room for people to get important things done. Make a case to your boss about your need for this kind of space, especially if the chatter is really affecting your work.
If you can’t get to the files you need because there are folders, boxes, and piles of documents everywhere that you aren’t using, then it’s time to think about storage solutions. There’s simply no way to cope with this kind of distraction – it has to go. It doesn’t have to be a costly problem: you can easily find storage space on a community sharing site, where you can put those old documents out of site and out of mind. Once the files are no longer needed for legal reasons, you can destroy them by having them burned or shredded.
If your personal life is distracting you, it’s hard to get your head back in the game and focus. You might be seeing messages and notifications come in on your phone, browsing the content every hour or so, or just thinking about whether anyone has seen your latest post. It’s hard to switch off, as we are all getting used to the idea of being plugged into our phones at all times.
You can use an app blocker which turns off social media, or even just turn off the internet on your phone so that you can’t load anything up. There are also similar blockers that you can use on your work computer so that you don’t get tempted by a cheeky check of Twitter. Try to remind yourself that work is more important – social media is just that, social stuff for your leisure time only.
Too much work
If you have too much work to do, you might end up not knowing where to even start. You could find yourself shuttling between projects, doing a little bit here and there, without really getting anything done. This way, it’s easy to miss deadlines when they come up.
Try to focus by making a detailed plan of what needs doing for each project, then working backward from the deadline to see when it needs to be done by. When you get into work every morning, look at your plans and figure out what needs to be done next out of everything for you to stay on track. This will be your daily to-do list.
It’s easy to get distracted by anything and everything, so the most important factor here is your own power of concentration. If you don’t want to focus on work, it will be hard to do so. Build up your own willpower!
Emma Lewis is a loving mother, a devoted wife and a part of the team supporting Spacer – a company helping you find storage space in Sydney whenever you need it. Emma is also a staunch supporter of the sharing economy and often mentions its benefits.