10 Concentration Techniques for the Easily Distracted

by CJRose

Do you find it difficult to motivate yourself? Are you easily distracted? Follow these tips to improve your concentration and get things done.

In today's fast paced world with emails, cell phones, and social media, it's very easy to get distracted. For those of us who work from home, it's an even bigger problem, with the TV, kids, and all the other unexpected events that happen in the course of a day which demand our attention. Most of us have long to do lists and very little time. So when we do get distracted, we feel angry with ourselves, and even more stressed out. However, by learning a few simple techniques, we can take back control, concentrate, and improve our efficiency.

10 Concentration Tips

  1. Do not multitask.  It will result in you doing several tasks badly. By doing one task at a time, you'll finish quicker, accomplish more, and your work will be of a higher standard.

  2. Find a quiet environment to work in.  I used to work in my living room.  But the pull of the TV was always too much.  Even if I didn't actually switch it on, I'd be sitting there trying to fight the urge to grab the remote control.  Now I try to work from my study whenever possible. I listen to classical music (studies show it actually improves concentration).  I prefer music without lyrics.  If a song has lyrics, I find myself listening to the words instead of concentrating on what I'm doing. It helps to have a room that you only associate with work.  If you don't have space in your home, or you find working from home too distracting, try a library or cafe.

  3. Practice the 5 minute rule.  If there is something that I'm having trouble starting, I tell myself I will only do it for 5 minutes.  Most of the time, once I get started, I continue until the task is finished.  But this technique helps me to begin.

  4.  Take regular breaks, especially if you are working on a computer.  A good rule of thumb is 45 minutes of work, followed by a fifteen minute break. You can use the time to do something you enjoy or other things you need to do around the house.  Go for a short walk.  Giving a reward will motivate you to complete your task.

  5. Set goals.  Break big jobs into small, manageable chunks.  For example, if you plan to write a Wizzley, first you might choose an idea, write a plan, a headline, and so on.  Take one task at a time. Don't worry about the next step, just concentrate on what you are doing in this step.  Finishing the step you are on will help you move on to the next step.   

  6. Do an easy task first to get you started.  In their book "Working From Home: Managing Your Time, Money, and Stuff", Paul and Sarah Edwards recommend stopping mid-task at the end of the day. If you are a writer, stop writing in the middle of sentence, so you have an easy starting point the next day. If you really feel demotivated and overwhelmed by a job, focus on what you can do.  By doing what you can, your confidence will increase, and that task that seemed like climbing up a mountain at the beginning of the day suddenly seems doable.

  7. Have a routine.   Having a specific work schedule helps train the mind to concentrate during these times.  

  8. Keep up hobbies and have fun.  Don't burn out.  If you are able to relax outside of work, it will you concentrate when you are working.  Aim for balance.  Getting fresh air and exercise are particularly important if you work from home.   Get out and about.  Working from home can be lonely.  You might want to find a networking group in your area.  This will not only give you valuable business contacts, but you'll also meet other people in the same situation.

  9. Don't be a perfectionist.  Be positive.  I realized that a lot of my concentration and procrastination came from trying to be perfect.  If I couldn't do something a hundred percent, I was too afraid to do it at all.  But this attitude meant I never got to where I wanted to be and I never made progress.   I learned it's okay to make mistakes.  There are very few  mistakes which can't be fixed.  Besides making mistakes is part of the learning process.  Imagine if you didn't get behind the wheel of a car until you knew everything about mechanics.  You would never learn to drive.  Learn from your mistakes.  Don't give yourself a hard time.      

  10. Practice mindfulness techniques such as meditation.  Be present in the moment.  Let go of all your worries.  If there is something you can do about them, do it.   If not, let them go.  




Music to Help You Concentrate

Music for Concentration

Music for Concentration facilitates the ideal accelerated learning environment known as Body Relaxed/Mind Alert. Gentle music, shifting dynamics, and slow tempos create a Body R...

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Music for Productivity

Music for Productivity incorporates proven psychoacoustic techniques to revitalize and renew. Using a great variety of tempos to stimulate the nervous system, the process of son...

View on Amazon

Music for Thinking

Music for Thinking is designed to enhance your concentration and energize your thought processes. Consisting of psychoacoustically-refined classical masterworks by Beethoven, Br...

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Reaching The Finish Line

One of the great rewards of concentration is that you finish projects and achieve your goals.  Start off with something small. There is no better feeling that ticking something off the to do list.  You'll gain confidence and be inspired to achieve your next goal.   

Further Reading

Working From Home: Managing Your Time, Money & Stuff

From the authorities on home-based business, Paul and Sarah Edwards, this gets as close as possible to everything you need to know, from office layout to maintaining personal relationships. A must for anyone considering working out of the home.

View on Amazon

Your Brain at Work: Strategies for Overcoming Distraction, Regaining Focus, and Working Smarter A...

David Rock knows how the brain works-and more specifically, how it works in a work setting. Learn not only to survive in today's overwhelming work environment but succeed in it-and still feel energized and accomplished at the end of the day.

View on Amazon

The Power of Concentration

We all know that in order to accomplish a certain thing we must concentrate. It is of the utmost value to learn how to concentrate. This book will teach you how.

View on Amazon

Updated: 01/17/2014, CJRose
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skywalker on 02/06/2015

Some great advices here. Bookmarked for reminder. Thanks

CJRose on 12/29/2013

Hi Abby and Word Chazer, I have been looking into this recently as someone who has concentration difficulties. They do help. Thanks for your comments.

Guest on 12/29/2013

I have an ADHD fleabrain at times. Thanks for the reminders to keep me on track.

AbbyFitz on 12/28/2013

These are good tips. Unfortunately I am one who can get distracted over little things.

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