Improving concentration and building mental focus

David Price – CEO of Health Assured

April 08 2016

Running your business presents numerous challenges in itself, but when you lack concentration or lose focus these challenges become a much tougher uphill battle. Business, particularly in today’s climate requires a sharp mind and an ability to adapt to sudden changes. With this in mind, how can business owners and their management teams keep their eye on current goals and objectives without falling into the haze of distractions that surround us every day? Below are four methods, which I have found to be particularly effective in staying focussed and concentrating on the tasks at hand. Limit time with your emails If you are someone who is easily distracted, receiving an endless amount of emails is something that can lead you astray from tasks that actually require your attention. Unfortunately, email is the easiest and fastest form of communication and therefore is unlikely to be minimised any time soon. Rather than trying to ignore emails altogether, which is virtually impossible, look at setting aside certain times during the day where you can go through emails, fishing out the important emails from those which can be addressed at a later date. Prioritising tasks At times, we can all find ourselves weighed down by small, menial tasks, that whilst need to be completed, should not take precedent over tasks which require urgent attention. Organisation is the key to this method, as it will involve breaking down tasks into a list based on their level of priority. Try following a traffic light system whereby red denotes urgent tasks, amber is assigned to medium priority tasks and green is placed on tasks which can be completed at a later date. This a relatively simple structure which will not only help you organise and manage your time more effectively, but will also reduce the possibility of distractions breaking your focus. Creating a manageable workload We all experience moments when our workload feels uncontrollable or when we simply take too much on in order to keep up with internal and external demands. The problem with this is that it leads to undue stress and anxiety, which not only negatively effects individual health, but also workplace morale and productivity. If you begin feeling that a task is too big, break it down into more manageable chunks. By reducing its visible scale, you can determine which parts of the task will require more attention, enabling you to set realistic goals that help you achieve your overall objective. Bear in mind, if your workload continues to be overwhelming, consider asking for help. This is not a weakness. In fact it is a great strength, as it shows that you care about the outcome of the project and the impact it can have on the business as a whole. Keeping a tidy workspace ‘Tidy space, tidy mind’ is a mantra that business owners and managers would be wise to adopt. Giving your workspace a spring clean helps to reduce clutter, separating all the unnecessary waste from the important things you actually need to do your job. Create a filing system where you can store things and come back to them at a later date. This will help relieve the hassle and burden of panicking when you need to find that important document or that piece of paper you wrote that big idea on.

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