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Staying Focused Series - Make it a Habit



 

All of the steps that we talked about above are great for helping you improve your focus. When you make clear goals about what you would like to accomplish and you get enough sleep and good food and you spend time using some of the time management techniques, you will find that it is easier to focus and you can get more done throughout the day.


But it is not always going to be easy. There will be times when you want to avoid doing the work or you would rather spend time on your phone. You may enjoy getting more work done during the first few days of trying out these different techniques. After a few days though, you may want to slip back into your old habits and not stick with it.


If you want to improve your focus and see results, you will need to not just read through some of the techniques above, you will need to turn them into habits that you are able to use day in and day out. When you get to bed and wake up each day for a month at the same time, you will make it a habit that is harder to break. If you get into the habit of Eating the Frog the moment you get into work, then it is just something you automatically start to do.


What is Habit?


Your goal through all of this is to turn some of the actions that we discussed in this guidebook into habits. A habit is just a behavioral pattern that we develop by repeating it over and over again. It can often be used to help improve our performance of that pattern. When it is done enough, it is something that we can do without thinking about it.


This is a great thing for you because it will help you get more done, even without thinking about it. When you turn off your phone automatically when you enter your office, you have developed a habit that makes it easier to focus on your work and not get distracted. When you set up a to-do list and then sit down to work on sprints with the Pomodoro Method, you can get to work without feeling like it is hard to do.


Start with just one habit at a time. We gave a ton of suggestions through this guidebook that are meant to help you succeed. Taking them all on at once is an admirable goal, but one that will overwhelm you and can make it impossible to stay focused and on-task. Start with one or two that seem important to you. Maybe you make a goal during the first few weeks to get to bed half an hour earlier and that you want to try out the Pomodoro Method. From there you can see improvements and that may be enough to motivate you to try out a few other methods.


How to Create a Habit


Now that we have given you all of the tools that you need to take control over your time and gain more focus, it is time to turn those into a habit that you are able to use each day to get more done.


Some of the steps you can use to create new habits include:


● Focus on one habit at a time: If you spend a lot of time on your phone each day, maybe start by making it a habit to only check the phone once an hour. Then you can move on to making a focus haven in the office and then choosing one of the time management techniques. When you do one little thing at a time, it is easier to handle and can turn all of these into second nature while your focus improves. Start with a small habit: You do not need to dive in with the

hardest habit to handle first. Start with something small.


● Be specific in your intent: You have to be specific and stick with the goal. Having a goal of just getting more done during the day just doesn’t cut it here. Have an action plan for how you will get everything done and be specific with your intent. If you are going to use the Eat the Frog method, know the day before which task you will complete for that and then sit down to do it right away in the morning with no distractions.


● Track your progress: The Pomodoro method can be good for this since you are supposed to write down what you accomplish during each little sprint. At the end of a few weeks of doing it, compare notes and see how much more you are able to accomplish. You may be amazed at how much you can get done when you work on your focus and take control over your own time.


The process of creating a new habit is not that complicated. There are only a few steps to use. But following through with all of this is the part that is hard. The biggest obstacle to a new habit is just getting started. If you can get through the hard part and you can do the work for a few weeks, or up to a month, then it becomes a habit and you will find it is easier to just stick with it.


Conclusion


Maintaining our focus in this digital world is always hard. There are a lot of things that can catch our attention and may make it easy to get distracted and lose our focus on the task at hand. We may see a notification on social media, a text message, or even an email and feel the intense urge to check it out rather than doing our work. Each of these breaks can cost us valuable time when it comes to getting our work done.


In this blog series, we took a look at how focus works with the brain and then explored a few of the different methods and techniques that you can use to help improve your own focus. This is not a process that will work overnight. It is easy to get distracted and avoiding the temptation of looking at your phone one more time or checking your email again is tough. But by slowly implementing some of the ideas and some of the techniques, you can slowly improve your focus and gain control over your time again.


If you enjoyed this blog series and found it useful, please take a moment to leave a comment!

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