Tips to stay focused and productive

If there is a single, most-consistent problem in my life, it’s the ability to stay focused and productive. The older I get, the harder it seems to do.

I can do so well in streaks of a few days, then go a weeks without making any forward progress. Many times, it is a self-inflicted wound because I’m self-sabotaging my momentum.

So, when I saw an article in Thrive Global about tips to maintain focus and productivity, I had to check it out. There wasn’t a lot of new information for me because I was already very familiar with some of the ideas. What I could really use is someone to stand behind me holding a ruler so that if I deviate from that day’s plan, I get thwacked on the head.

Some of the ideas mentioned in the article are excellent and they are almost guaranteed to work, when applied consistently. Here are a few of my favorites:

1. Write down your top three priority tasks for the day and do those first.

Think about it. If you accomplished three important things every day for 30 days, you’d complete nearly 100 top-priority tasks every month. It will be exceptionally hard not to move forward with your plan when you have that kind of momentum behind you!

2. Put your phone on silent.

This is one thing I do consistently. I turned off ALL notifications within days of getting my newest smart phone. The bing, buzz, ping of various applications delivering ads and messages worked to grind my productivity to a halt.

I also shut off ALL text message notifications, too. Nothing killed my productivity faster than a group text thread with people responding “LOL,” “Me 2” or with some smiley emojis to someone else’s joke.

3. Surround yourself with friends who encourage you.

This is more important than we probably realize. If all our friends are content to stay home and watch television news, old TV comedies and scroll through never-ending social media posts, their negative influence will rub off on us, too.

However, if we hang around with other excited people who are passionately pursuing their purpose, then they will motivate us to achieve more as well. We were always concerned with who our children associated with because we didn’t want them to have a bad influence on our kids. We should follow our own advice.

I encourage you to read the other 15 ideas submitted by Thrive Global members. Perhaps something will strike a chord and motivate you to stay on track.