Tips on How To Focus Better: Increase Your Productivity and Improve Concentration

As we live in a world jam-packed with distractions - Facebook notifications, phone ringing, and background noises, staying focused continues to become challenging.
Lexin-Ann Morales

woman focusing on work and don’t lose focus lettering

It truly becomes difficult for everyone to know how to focus better.

The ability to stay focused is a skill. Several statistics and articles have shown that our attention span is shorter than a goldfish’s.

Is it true, though?

Back in the day, it was manageable to concentrate on a task. Now, aside from the innovative technology, the stress due to the pandemic was also linked to why it’s difficult to stay focused. No matter how skillful and talented you are, without staying focused, it’s hard to climb and reach success. Wondering how to focus better and improve your concentration? We’ve listed some things that can help–keep reading!

Read also: Tips On How to Succeed in Working From Home

1. Identify your distractions and get rid of them

girl staring at a laptop struggling to focus
Photo by Yan Krukov from Pexels

There is always power with acknowledgment.

One of the important answers on how to focus on tasks is the acknowledgment of distractions. Acknowledging and knowing what interferes with your focus can help you identify and combat them–allowing you to be familiar with the process, and get rid of it. To start, make a list of what distracts you the most. For example, in my case:

  • Phone
  • Social media notifications
  • YouTube (Animal videos)
  • Noise

While it can be difficult to get rid of your distractions totally, it is possible to lessen them. Small steps such as going on airplane mode, hiding my phone, and getting away from noise by working in a quiet room help me to combat my distractions. It might be hard to do so–but baby steps matter!

2. Declutter

man decluttering to improve focus
Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels

Decluttering is one of the essential ways to improve focus. Keeping a neat workspace does the trick–don’t let your messy desks distract you from getting things done! Organize and declutter your working area by taking away some unnecessary books, old receipts, and unneeded sticky notes. Don’t worry, you don’t have to achieve the perfect Pinterest-work-from-home setups. Just keep it clean!

“From the moment you start tidying, you will be compelled to reset your life.”

- Marie Kondo

Decluttering is not just all about cleaning up your messy papers and organizing your desk–decluttering the mind is one way to achieve focus. Here are some ways you can organize your thoughts:

  • Journal. You will be amazed how taking down notes can help you organize your ideas! With so much going on in our brains, journaling is one of the best ways to remember and take note of everything, not just the important stuff.
  • Yoga/Meditation. In the past, yoga was done in a wellness center. Now, with the right precaution, it’s possible to do yoga at the comfort of our homes–with the help of applications and video tutorials. Meditation is also the best way to take a breather after a long day–allowing your mind to relax and release thoughts.

3. Play some music

a girl who improved focused on studying
Photo by Zen Chung from Pexels

Did you know?

Music is one of the most effective ways to improve focus! A study in 2007 from the Stanford University School of Medicine proves that music, specifically, classical music, helps your brain to absorb and retain information. If you’re not a classical music person, here’s some of the music we recommend for staying focused:

A research study said that a moderate level of ambient noise is conducive to creating cognition. Who would have thought that soft office noise and random murmurs in the coffee shop are one of the ways to improve focus? With Coffitivity, coffee shop noises and office chatters can now be paused, played, and rewind!

With the tagline, “Ambient sounds to wash away distraction”, this fantastic website provides the most relaxing sounds you can enjoy while working, studying, or even for chilling: Rain, waves, wind, birds, and more.

Unleash the DJ in you with Noisli, a music app that lets you curate playlists, and allows you mix different sounds together to your liking.

4. Make a To-Do list

hand writing a to-do list to improve focus
Photo by Marko Klaric from Pexels

To-do lists never get old. It’s a timeless trick to save time–it helps you to separate the most important things to finish and monitor your task. To make the most out of your to-do lists, write down:

- Achievable tasks: While it looks better to have a lot of tasks written, it’s not advisable to write unrealistic ones. Make sure to write an “I’ll probably do” list for the day!

- Break your to-dos down: Separate the larger to-dos to smaller to-dos. This helps you prioritize your tasks.

- Make your to-do list visible: Put up your to-do list to where you can always see it–it’s hard to keep track of your reminders if it’s hidden.

5. Avoid multi-tasking

woman focused on work
Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels

Unless you’re a superhero who can talk to a meeting while reading an email at the same time, it isn’t advisable to multitask–your brain will pay for it. Focus on one task at a time, finishing a complete to-do before going to the next one.

6. Beat procrastination with different techniques

hourglass as a timer to improve productivity
Photo by Mike from Pexels

Aside from the traditional ways to improve focus, there are different techniques that you can try to beat procrastination. Here are some examples:

- Eat-The-Frog technique: Identifying the biggest task for the day and finishing it first–in the morning and not later of the day

- The Pomodoro technique: Picking a task, setting a time (25 minutes), taking a 5-minute break after, and doing it again

Make sure to do your research and know what fits you–it won’t hurt to give any techniques a try!

7. Feed your mind

bowl of blueberry with nuts
Photo by Tetyana Kovyrina from Pexels

Feeding your mind doesn’t have to involve the most technical stuff–make sure to take a rest while reading your favorite book, listening to a podcast, watching movies, and more. Aside from relaxing, here is some food that you can eat to feed your brain (literally)!:

  • Fatty fish, sardines
  • Brocolli
  • Blueberries
  • Nuts
  • Dark Chocolate

Taking a moment to refresh will help you figure how to focus better, but also maintain your wellbeing.

8. Rest

woman resting to improve focus
Photo by Artem Beliaikin from Pexels

“The best cure for the body is a quiet mind.”

- Napoleon Bonaparte

Amidst grinding and hard work, take a break–rest if you can. Energize and be better for another tomorrow!

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