Do you find you’re challenged with the balancing act of managing numerous projects and deadlines on a regular basis? Many of us are and we’re realizing it’s affecting our efficiency.
Our overall productivity relies heavily on our focus. Our brain plays a major role in setting our attention/focus when it intentionally allows us to choose what we see. We can focus our attention when we’re able to remove all disturbances, distractions, and mayhem from our life. Often we undermine our focus when we multi-task, otherwise known as task switching which is mental flexibility that includes the skill to shift attention between one task and another.
There are many theories as to whether multi-tasking is effective or not.
Likely, it depends on your own style and what is most effective for you. Due to the sheer volume of our work, whether we like it or not we must multi-task. Through my work with leaders, I’ve learned, they often work in clusters – they focus on a project until they’re needed on something else, then they come back to their task. The challenge is being able to switch from one serious conversation or thought to another that may be unrelated. Often our mind is still thinking about the meeting we had 30 minutes ago when we need to focus on the current task at hand and without a doubt this affects our productivity.
Multi-tasking often creates clutter on our desk and in our minds.
We can however strategically clear away the clutter to focus and be in the moment when we need to, which is often. Clearing away the clutter is a strategy that not only enhances our social skills, it assists us with quieting our inner thoughts and sharpening our listening skills. Here’s the thing, if you’re able to remove the unimportant unwanted items you’ll definitely enhance your mental state and focus.
Tips to Clear Away the Clutter
- Focus on the conversation instead of the chatter that is constantly going on in our heads. We continuously talk to ourselves, while we’re busy doing that we’re not focusing on what’s happening outside of us in our environment.
- Sharpen your listening skills. We tend to develop our response to the question while the person is still communicating. This is not a best practice, it’s very difficult to listen to yourself and the other person at the same time. We need to actively listen to the person who is speaking to us.