In search of Tips & Tricks for focusing at work

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In search of Tips & Tricks for focusing at work 2010-12-28T15:57:28+00:00

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  • #88880

    Anonymous
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    Post count: 14413

    I am a 28 year old who has ADHD & I was diagnosed when i was 7… I have been working at a desk job for about 2.5 years… before working in this “Cubical farm” environment I spent 5.5 years doing the same job, but I was face to face with the customer (now i do about the same thing over the phone) which helped me focus. I should also mention that I love my job (as a travel counselor) but am not a fan of being chained to my desk, because I need to be there to answer incoming calls- it’s basically a 2 person call center so there always needs to be someone on the phone & you can only have your phone set on break mode for a certain length of time. That part of the job makes me miss working face to face- however I do not have the luxury of changing positions.

    Now that i am in the office (I happened to luck out and am on the quiet side of the offices, with only 1 super quiet co-worker in the 9 available cubes- so co-workers are not a big part of my distraction) i find it’s a bit hard to stay on task.. I find myself flipping between work, personal e-mails, Facebook (which i manage the company’s facebook page so that won’t get me in trouble), and on other random websites (like today it’s this site!) Right now it’s winter and our slower season, however i am still finding that i’m kinda falling behind…. Summer is coming up & that is our busy season and I want to try to stay on top of things!! Please let me know your tips & tricks for staying on task at work…any and all suggestions are welcomed!!

    Thanks in advance!

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    #98409

    Rick Green – Founder of TotallyADD
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    Post count: 473

    One thing I do is to create challenges. Short ones. With clear results and clear payoffs. So if checking Personal E mails is a problem, then decide, “I’m going to work for 30 minutes without checking my own E mail.” (Or 10 minutes. Or 2 hours. Whatever seems a challenge, but not an insurmountable one. Then set a timer and get to work. If you feel the need to go check E mail, look at the timer. If times up, go ahead. If it’s not, then back to work. Coach yourself. Aloud. (But not too loudly.) “I’ve done 20 minutes. That’s good. I can do this. Ten more is nothing, baby.”

    The reward can be anything. I like these Trans-fat-free cookies Ava buys.

    What I find is that many times, once I’ve managed to do what I said I would, say avoiding E mail for 30 whole minutes, I feel more confident, in control, in charge, and up for a bigger challenge.

    So I decide to play a bigger game.

    “I am gonna go 45 minutes. I’ll get another 15 done. What the heck, the mail will still be there and I’ll be master of my domain.”

    And if I make it to 45 minutes I’ll ask, “Can I go an hour?” Eventually I’ll turn it around, and decide that E mail is the interruption and my work is more fun, that E mail is taking me away from my work. Instead of thinking, “I’d rather be doing something fun like cruising E mail instead of doing more work,” I will reframe it. “This stupid mindless E mail is keeping me from accomplishing the fun stuff, my work.” But that only works if I make the work fun. So if I’m writing something, I’ll make that a game, “I’m going to make this twice as funny as the last one I wrote.”

    In your case, answering calls, you might create the challenge, “I’m going to see if I can get three callers to tell me I really brightened up their day.” Or “I’m going to do something for the company website that’s going to get everyone talking. In a good way.”

    Create a challenge.

    When it’s a short deadline and a big challenge, my mind comes alive.

    And if it’s not challenging, I make it challenging. I got above and beyond. Sometimes just for the hell of it.

    Or just to prove to myself I can do it.

    Does that make sense?

    Build the muscle, one step at a time.

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    #98410

    Anonymous
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    Post count: 14413

    I have found the keeping my outlook Calendar only open to the day that I am on. . . with the email notification turned off. . .and setting a specific time during the day to check email . . .and priorizing what I am scanning my email for helps.

    I have also started setting a timer for every 30 minutes to reminding me. . .”Oh yes. . .what was I suppoed to be doing. . .” when it goes off.

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    #98411

    Anonymous
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    Post count: 14413

    I have come to realize that the email inbox is a LOUSY organizer. When things come in, find a way to get them out of the in box as quickly as possible – delete them if you can, respond then delete, copy the information, save it as a file in your documents folder, then delete the email, or simply move the email to an appropriate folder (I have one called “useful information”). The point is, email should only be for the sending and receiving of information, NOT retaining it.

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