How to Stay Focused When There Are So Many Distractions 9

stay focused, eliminate distractions

In order to stay focused, one should first know what focus is and why we need it so much. In fact, without it we can’t see any progress in life or get anything done properly. But with it, we can create remarkable things and do productive work that matters.

Focus is basically our ability to concentrate on one thing at a time, to eliminate everything else (the distractions) and to let our mind work on the current task in front of us.

It can be a big project at work, a test at university, performing an exercise at the gym, or a conversation with a friend. Whatever that is, focus is a big part of it. It helps us make the most of this activity, experience it truly, be present and pay attention to one thing (be it a person, task, or else).

However, with all the distractions around us these days finding focus becomes a difficult task. But as with everything else, it’s smarter and easier to first eliminate what’s unnecessary, so that only the essential is left.

In this case, let’s remove distractions in order to be able to stay focused throughout the whole day. But first, we need to identify these so that we can be aware of them.

Here are the main distractions in our daily life that prevent us from staying focused, and what to do to eliminate each:

4 Distractions to Eliminate to Stay Focused and Get Things Done

1. People.

A common scenario is people entering the room/office or calling/texting you all the time while you’re trying to work.
They ask you stuff, want you to do something for them, want to see how you’re doing, to just chat, or to share something.

But in order to stay focused every day for at least a few hours, and to thus get closer to your goals in life all the time, you need to be ruthless with your most productive time.

So I say find when in the day you’re most productive, and be by yourself for that period without letting anyone distract you.

Stay focused by knowing no one would come or call you. The best solution is to simply tell them it’s important to you to work at that time. If they respect you and take you seriously, they won’t bother you.

If it’s urgent, then of course things would be different and you’ll react quickly. But most often people exaggerate and just need attention or simply to communicate with someone, although there’s not even anything essential to talk about.

Don’t let them waste your time and focus. Be ruthless with these two.

By the way, that’s also a pretty useful experiment. You’ll notice that some people may keep calling you or texting you all the time, or asking for favors, although it’s nothing important. That means they don’t really respect you or just don’t care at all. It’s a good thing to keep in mind.

2. Social media and email.

These come in one category. And it’s when you’re working on something online. Which almost anyone has to do daily.

You need to set some limits. Decide on a fixed time when you’ll check email (like twice a day – once in the morning, and once in the afternoon), and a certain part of the day when you’re allowed to indulge in social media (like after you’re done with your main work tasks).

3. Random thoughts.

Now that’s something we’re all familiar with.

When you really need to stay focused – regardless of the reasons and other factors – random thoughts start popping up in your mind and you can’t concentrate at all.

This is something you need to work on for some time. You need practice before you can be laser focused. But once you have it, you’ll get much more work done in less time. And that will save you so much time and worries in the future. So it’s worth the effort now to see such results.

One way to practice clearing your mind is meditation. All you need to do is stay still and try to focus on your breathing, or just on one thought (preferably a positive affirmation).

In the beginning you’ll find it hard to do even for a few minutes. But in a week or so you’ll see improvement.
Soon you’ll be able to empty your mind from past and future thoughts completely.

4. Procrastination.

Yep, procrastination itself can be called a distraction too.

It’s when we start overthinking, wondering what to do first, finding excuses not to work on that right now, fearing we might fail, being in doubt, and so on. All these are forms of procrastination.

How to beat it?

The simplest way is to start working on the first thing on your to-do list right after you get out of bed. Otherwise, you’ll start doing something else first, and from there on your focus will be lost.

To stay focused you need to first start something. And for that to happen, you need to be prepared too.

Creating a to-do list the night before is one way. Also, try to think of the possible distractions that may come in the way in advance. And do something about them.

So that’s how you find focus and do productive work in a world full of distractions. It’s all about clarity. And another useful thing you can do is get clear about your specific goals, both in the long- and short-term.

Once you know how each task and activity will help you get closer to something you truly want, you’ll be motivated to start working on it and will be concentrated as much as you can.

How do you stay focused? What are the distractions you have to deal with all the time?

See also:

5 Steps to Finding Your Focus
An 18-Minute Daily Plan for Finding Focus

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How to Stop Dreaming About ‘One Day’ and Get to Action Now 130

We all have dreams and desires. Things we want to achieve or experience in life. Yet how many of us actually put serious thought into these things?
How to Stop Dreaming About 'One Day' and Get to Action Now

This article was written by Brian Simms, who’s passionate about helping people become everything they can be.

How often have you heard people say “One day I want to do such and such.”, “One day I am going to start so and so”.?

People talk about the things they would like to do. They tell their friends over cups of coffee about their dreams and the things they hope to achieve “one day.” Then, as though it was merely small talk (and honestly that’s all it was), the dreams and desires are packed away back into the mental compartment you extracted them from. Only to be brought out and dusted off every now and then as you ruminate about your life and what you hope to achieve “one day”.

Life carries on and you mark off time as you live it.

The dreams you contemplate still surface. But you push the thoughts aside as they prick you with guilt as you realize that the “one days” are quickly piling up behind you.

A week has passed.

A month.

A year.

Now it’s a few years behind you and the things you hoped to achieve seem impossible as time is getting shorter. You’re older and you tell yourself that “one day” you hope to bring your dreams and desires to pass.

Seriously, you are kidding yourself. You have had so many “one days” pass behind you and feelings of remorse creep in. The chatter over coffees with your friends at the local cafe continues as you tell each other what you would like to do. The gleam in your eye flickers out once you go back home and back into the routine of your life.

Here is some advice:

Make the “one day” today. Stop talking and start doing.

Life is a Set of Problems. Here’s Your Guide to Solving Them.

Time doesn’t wait for you. It passes by impartially. You need to take time by its collar and let it know that it’s serving you now instead of you being the slave to time.

What are your dreams and goals? What do you want out of life?

Here are some steps to get you going:

  1. Write it down. When you write down what you want it feels more concrete and less of an abstract idea. Also, it helps you to become committed to achieving your dream.
  2. Research what you need to do. What is needed to bring your dream to pass? Make a list of the skills and resources required. The internet is an inexhaustible supply of information. Go online and start finding out how to start.
  3. Gather supporters. You don’t need detractors who are going to cause you to doubt. Find people who will encourage you and guide you. Remove the negative voices.
  4. Make small steps. As we all know, a baby makes tiny steps before it can run. Take little steps forward toward your dream. Break your goals down into small manageable pieces.
  5. Don’t be afraid of mistakes. As we step out and do things we’ve never tried before, it’s inevitable that we are going to make mistakes along the way. Don’t fear mistakes. Embrace them and learn from them.
  6. Check your progress. It’s important to stop every so often and see how well we are doing in bringing our dream to pass. Are we on track? What needs to change?
  7. Celebrate. Reward yourself for what you have achieved. Doing so is motivating and keeps you focused and excited about what you are doing.

If you feel like you don’t have the confidence to start chasing your dreams, then question what it is that is causing the lack of confidence.

Life is too short to have regrets. Don’t let excuses stop you.

Excuses keep you trapped in mediocrity.

The journey isn’t going to be easy. It takes time and focused commitment to bring dreams to pass.

Time ticks on and you think to yourself “Ah. One day…” Stop marking off time.

Ask yourself “How bad do I want to have this dream become a reality?” Listen to yourself provide an honest answer. If the fire isn’t stirring in your belly when you think about the dream, then either forget about it or find a way to stoke up the fire.

What would your life be like if the dream was no longer a dream? How would you feel if you reflect back on your life and realized the missed opportunities and chances you had to make your dream a reality?

That’s the good old “Rocking Chair Test”!

Don’t simply relegate your dreams to small talk amongst your friends and work colleagues. Stop wistfully saying “One day…” and then pushing your hopes and dreams into the back of your mind.

Today is your “One day”. Start now. Get serious and stop the mediocrity.

Then next time you have a get together with your friends and they play the same record of “One day…”, you can tell them that your day has come. Tell them what you have been doing and then watch the reaction.

Let your friends catch your motivation. If they don’t, then don’t let them stop you.

No longer say “One day….” Say “Now, let’s start!”