BUSINESS COLUMN: Improve Your Focus for Business Success

By anguillian May 8, 2017 12:25 Updated



Improve Your Focus for Business Success

Many successful business persons will identify a precise focus on what is important as one of the main factors which contribute to their success. Many of us will acknowledge that we find it increasingly difficult to focus. In fact, we may be addicted to wasting time. We do it without being fully aware that we are spending hours a day on social media, checking email, surfing the internet, multi-tasking and more. However, a need to focus on the things that are important must be priority if we are to take our businesses to the next level.

There are a number of practical things we can do daily to limit distractions and improve our focus. Leo Babauta shares some great tips on his blog, some of which have been adapted here:
1) Know what actually really matters. For most businesses your focus for example should not be increasing your social media followers. Spending hours a day inviting persons to like your page, or liking and commenting on other pages so that they will follow back, will not improve your core business. Instead, focus on the tasks and processes that need to be done that will improve your bottom line, customer or employee morale etc. and contribute to the long term sustainability of your business. Apply the 80/20 rule. Many of the important tasks or processes may be the ones that you have been procrastinating on. Focus on these.

2) Pick your top one to three tasks each day. We shared this tip in the productivity hacks post a few months ago but it is worth repeating. These tasks should be meaningful to your business. Checking email does not count. Focus and ensure that you complete these tasks before the end of your day.

3) Stop multitasking. This is a hard one for many business people – many who are sole proprietors. However, it has been proven that if we stick with one task, limit distraction, and complete it before moving on to another task, we are overall more efficient. Focus on one task at a time.

4) Plan more time than you need for each task. We can practice the art of not starting a task until we have specified how much time we will allocate to getting it completed. This improves focus knowing that a timeframe is present.

5) Take breaks and reward yourself. Most of us can only focus intensely for an hour or less. Take a short break every 30 to 60 minutes to reward yourself. Do your best to avoid going on social media, or surfing the internet, during your break as a five minute break could easily turn into a 30 minute break. Instead, listen to a song you love or go for a short walk to clear your head and get some exercise.

6) Know your limitations. You know what your schedule is like, the amount of work and demands on your plate and whether or not you struggle with procrastination. Factor all of this into your daily goals and make them realistic. This will help to improve your focus and make you feel more satisfied at the end of the day.

7) Do your best to limit distractions while you are at work. Working with others means that you may be disrupted and distracted during the day. While some disruptions are impossible to avoid, others can be limited. Let co-workers know that during certain times you will be focusing on projects and would not like to be disturbed. Put on headphones to discourage unnecessary chatter and tune out distractions. Put your phone away and log out of social media and email on your computer to improve focus.

We work in a world where there are numerous things competing for our attention. We have to decide where we will put our focus. The success of our businesses depends on it.

By Shellecia Brooks-Johnson

By anguillian May 8, 2017 12:25 Updated


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