Don’t Multitask - Deepstash

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8 Surprising Strategies for Unstoppable Focus

Don’t Multitask

Be fully present at what you doing, else you’ll find yourself at home thinking about work, and at work thinking about home.

Multitasking hurts your performance in all involved tasks, so schedule things in a way that you don’t have to do it.

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Break Up The Tedious Tasks.

Boring tasks lead to distraction and procrastination and enduring them exacerbates the problem. By taking frequent breaks and doing physical activity, gives you the energy you need to maintain focus.

Work in fifteen-minute bursts. Set a timer and try to do as much as you can before it goes off. When time is up, do something physically active, then work for another fifteen minutes. 

Fidget To Help You Focus

Trying to focus on something without moving tires the mind. In general, releasing excess energy throughout the day will help you stay on task.

When you need to pay attention during a call or meeting, bring a small object that you can play with, such as putty. Handling something that you can manipulate mindlessly while you listen frees up your mental energy so you can better focus.

Visually Map Your Time And Tasks
Map your day by the hour and review it throughout the day to help you organize your time. That visual cue will help you pace your day and budget your time appropriately. To do that:
  • Use free hours effectively by ranking your task list visually.
  • Try color coding your list according to priority, with four or five levels of urgency.
  • Do the essential, time-sensitive tasks early in the week while you're fresh, then save the optional ones for later.
Steve Job's effectiveness boiled down to this:

He inspired team members first so that they were driven to live up to his exacting standards when the situation called for it.

Get this equation backwards and you will wonder why  your employees disengage or drop out when you present tough challenges. 

The formula for being an inspirational driver
  • Know your "noble cause." Jobs understood that if teams don’t find their work meaningful, they perceive challenging directives from a leader as arbitrary demands rather than a call to sacrifice for a higher purpose.
  • Tell your story early and often. If you can’t weave your ideas into a clear, compelling story, those ideas remain abstract words likely to be forgotten.
  • Push, but within boundaries. Make sure you have a clear end point and time line in mind before you go into "push" mode. Intense work with no clear end in sight is demoralizing.
The goal of staying focused

The goal is not constant focus, but a short period of distraction-free time every day. 

Twenty minutes a day of deep focus could be transformative.

Do creative work first

Typically, we do mindless work first and build-up to the toughest tasks. That drains your energy and lowers your focus.

In order to focus effectively, reverse the order. Check off the tasks that require creativity or concentration first thing in the morning, and then move on to easier work.

Allocate your time deliberately

We are truly focused for an average of only six hours per week. You want to be really diligent with what you put into those hours.

90 percent of people do their best thinking outside the office. Notice where and when you focus best, then allocate your toughest tasks for those moments.