When working in an office, it’s easy to become distracted or demotivated during the day. Whether you are low on energy, lack inspiration, or are simply finding the pace of modern life a bit much, there are ways to easily combat all of these issues to improve your focus.
Better focus means increased productivity, allowing you to achieve your goals and work to your highest potential. Luckily, we have tips to help you boost productivity in the office, so you can get more done.
Top tips to boost workplace productivity
1. A desk makeover that inspires
Trying to complete a task when you don’t feel comfortable won’t give you the best results. What you want is a workspace that brings your imagination to life. If your surroundings aren’t inspiring you, try making a few small changes to spice things up. Indoor plants brighten any interior right up—plus, they have been shown to reduce stress levels and improve indoor air quality. Framed photos of loved ones will allow you to personalize your desk and can provide a little morale boost if you’re feeling tired, while affordable color co-ordinated IKEA accessories will keep things tidy. You should also regularly declutter your desk to stay organized and efficient. Get into the habit of spending five minutes doing this at the end of each day and watch tomorrow’s productivity skyrocket.
2. Eat to charge your batteries for the day
You wouldn’t expect an Olympian to win an event if he skipped breakfast; so don’t try to race through your workload without stocking up on energy first. Sit down to a healthy breakfast before getting on with your day, and be sure to pack the essentials such as a piece of fruit and a sandwich or salad for lunch. If you need a little boost, splash coffee into the mix, or try a caffeine-free alternative like coconut water or a green juice. If you find your energy tends to dip toward the middle of the afternoon, have a healthy snack on hand to perk yourself up, like a probiotic yoghurt or a handful of trailmix. And drink plenty of water throughout the day—dehydration leads to fatigue and lack of focus.
3. A chilled space to work
“In the summertime, when the weather is hot.” Yes, we did just quote Mungo Jerry—and while you may enjoy the sunshine when it comes to beach barbecues and outdoor activities during summer, it’s not so fun when you’re stuck overheating in a stuffy office. If there’s no air-conditioning at work, try an electric desk fan. Fill your water bottle to the brim and stay hydrated, and be sure to open the windows to get the air flowing. Alternatively, if you’re able to work from home for a few days a week, you could try relocating your office to a park in the shade.
4. Keep yourself focused with music
Music can provide an escape from distractions in the office. It can help boost creativity, makes repetitive tasks more enjoyable, and has been shown to improve happiness and productivity. With Spotify or the TuneIn Radio app, you can jam to your favourite hits while you race through your to-do list. Of course, make sure your headphones are plugged in properly, as any nearby stressed-out colleagues may not want to hear “It’s the final countdown” on repeat!
5. Look after yourself while working
Take regular breaks during the day to save your back and eyes from straining while giving your legs a good stretch. You could also try going for a quick walk or finding an app that teaches you basic yoga moves to help you loosen up during your lunch hour. A standing desk is ideal if you wish to avoid slouching in your seat; switching between standing and sitting throughout the day will help you stay energized and keep workplace productivity nice and high.
6. Airplane mode is your new best friend
Have at least one morning a week where your phone stays on airplane mode, eliminating distractions and allowing you to focus on what’s important (so not your friends’ Facebook status updates). Unless you’re using social media to promote your business, it can wait. By switching to airplane mode, you will be able to focus all of your attention on the task at hand—and you’ll complete it more quickly, too.
Taking these simple steps will improve your focus, boost your mood, and even have a positive impact on your overall health. Ultimately, you’ll have more time and energy to get things done, which will make your working days smoother and much more productive.