Brought To You By Emily Parks
Productivity Consultant at Organize For Success, LLC...
Helping You Make Every Minute Matter!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Limit Distractions to Boost Productivity

According to Time Magazine, 50% of American employees say they work for only 15 minutes before becoming distracted while 53% of those same American employees report wasting more than an hour a day because of disruptions. Likewise, a typical office worker gets only 11 minutes between each interruption while it takes up to 25 minutes to return to the original task after an interruption. Wow... Makes it challenging to get any work done, right?!?

As you jumpstart your productivity at the beginning of this new calendar year, take action to limit your distractions. Here are a few steps you can take to limit distractions:

- Whether you prefer Facebook, Google+, Instagram, LinkedIn or Pinterestset a timer for how long you will use social media. You can easily use the timer on your mobile device, a kitchen timer or one of the many options from Time Timer.

- Turn off the pings and dings for notifications. Each time you get a social media notification, a preview for a newly received email or an alert of a new text message received, that is an unnecessary distraction; eliminating those allows you to take control over your tech tools and choose to check for those new messages when it works best in your schedule.

- Send your phone directly to voicemail as needed. When you are in a meeting, you do not take time to answer every call that comes in. Think about working on tasks and priority projects in a similar way, holding off answering those requests for your time and energy until after the task at hand has been completed. Plus, turning off the ringtone removes another distraction.

- Consider working remotely at times. Research shows that working in a coffeeshop can be excellent for getting more done because any conversations around you or noises in the store become background noise and drown out distractions.

- Employ tech tools to block distracting sites temporarily. For example, at KeepMeOut's site, you tell it the site to be avoided and in what timeframe to warn you if you visit it more than once. LeechBlock is an extension for the Firefox web browser that lets you block whichever sites you deem to be time-wasting for you. Nanny for Google Chrome is added to your Chrome browser for blocking specific URLs on set days for more than what you tell it is the max number of minutes you can visit that website. SelfControl is a free Mac application to help you avoid distracting websites while StayFocused is another tool to add to your Chrome browser for limiting the amount of time you can spend on time-wasting websites. Choose whichever best meets your unique needs!

What tactics do you utilize currently to limit distractions? Which of those I have listed here can you add to your productivity toolbox for greater results?

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