10 Ways To Improve Your Focus and Concentration

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Updated September 29, 2023

A person sitting at their desk, holding a pen and looking out the window in an office.

In the ever-evolving digital world, our brain's ability to concentrate on a central task has become increasingly more challenging to do. However, with the right mindset and some practice, you can train your mind to ignore distractions and remain present. Understanding the benefits of staying focused can be crucial to success—no matter how small or large the task is—and can also help you gauge where you can improve in your professional career.

In this article, we define what focus means and provide tips to implement proper focus and concentration with minimal distractions in the workplace.

What is focus?

Focus is how someone pays attention or concentrates on a particular person or thing. When someone is focused, their attention is centered on a focal point. In terms of the workplace, employees are focused when their attention is directed toward completing their primary goal or objective.

Related: 10 Focus Exercises for Improving Concentration Skills

Ways to improve your focus at work

Here are 10 ways you can help to improve your mental focus and concentration in the workplace:

1. Eliminate distractions

You will be more productive and have a better chance of staying focused when you remove anything in your surroundings that might cause interruptions. If feasible, try keeping your phone in a different room or staying offline to minimize distractions and improve your focus overall. Working alone or in a quiet environment will also make you more focused.

Read more: 15 Tips on How To Eliminate Distractions At Work

2. Prioritize your tasks

If you have a lengthy number of tasks to complete, it can be beneficial to create a to-do list and rank each item by its level of importance. This lets you focus on one task at a time, allowing you to methodically work through your tasks instead of simply being overwhelmed and likely ineffectual.

3. Train your mind

Engaging in various brain training activities is a great way to improve your cognitive abilities and, subsequently, your ability to stay focused. When you instruct your brain to become more disciplined, you can become more active in paying attention to the task in front of you.

Related: Information Overload: Definition, Causes and How To Avoid It

4. Work in a quiet space

Working alone or in a secluded area makes you more apt to get more work done. A quiet environment can help you improve your focus by ensuring you won't be interrupted by colleagues or other noisy distractions from your workplace environment.

5. Try meditation

Relaxing, breathing and meditating can greatly improve your cognitive abilities, including mental focus and concentration. Try practicing yoga to strengthen your ability to concentrate in the workplace.

Related: How To Improve Your Focus at Work in 9 Ways (With Tips)

6. Exercise

Exercising regularly stimulates your brain and keeps it refreshed. Engaging in physical activity will also improve memory capacity and overall concentration. Not only will it help you stay energized, but it'll also give you the extra boost you need to stay focused and on task at work.

Related: 30 Ways To Exercise at Your Desk (And Why It's Important)

7. Take breaks

Taking time for yourself is a great way to avoid burnout. While steadily completing tasks is important, giving your mind time to recharge and relax can greatly benefit your mental health. If you're stuck on a task, walking away for a short while can give you a fresh perspective. Taking a break and allowing your brain time to shut down can also give you the momentum you need when you return to work and improve your focus on the task.

8. Get a good night's sleep

Sleeping at least eight hours a night is a great way to ensure you're in your best physical and mental state when you arrive at work. Being sleepy causes you to slow down. On the other hand, getting a good night's rest allows you to remain alert and awake—especially during the morning hours.

Related: 12 Ways To Overcome the Afternoon Slump and Regain Energy

9. Focus on one thing at a time

When you direct your attention toward one sole task, your risk of distraction minimizes. Rather than multitasking, keep your brain actively engaged on one thing at a time. Improve your quality of work and your attention span by focusing on one task first, then moving on to the next.

Related: 11 Brain Hacks for When You Can't Focus at Work

10. Allot time to specific tasks

When determining what tasks you need to complete, consider the time you'll need to complete each. Scheduling your day and exercising your time management skills will help you complete your work more efficiently and help you stay on top of it all. For example, allot 8-10 a.m. to complete task one, 10-11 a.m. to complete task two and so forth.

Learning to focus by applying helpful tactics to improve your attention span can help you become a better employee. Though distractions are bound to arise, learning how to deal with them and determining what will work well for you, are great starting points to consider.

Related: How To Improve Task Prioritization at Work

Benefits of staying focused

Staying committed to a central task can be incredibly beneficial in the workplace. No matter the industry you work in, working to improve your focus and increasing your attention span can propel your professional success. Here are four benefits of being focused at work:

1. Builds momentum

When you stay focused on one assignment, you're more apt to complete it more efficiently. Your ability to finish tasks quicker can motivate you to move on to the next. Knowing you can get things done will help you stay positive and motivate you to achieve your next goal.

2. Increases productivity

The more you can stay on task, the more tasks you'll be able to complete overall. Minimizing distractions is a great way to stay in the zone and allow your brain to process what needs your attention. As a working professional, you're more apt to get more work done when centralizing your attention.

Related: What Is Low-Hanging Fruit and How Can It Help Your Career?

3. Reduces stress

By staying on task and increasing your productivity, you'll also minimize any tension and pressure built up. When you're focused on one sole assignment, you can check more items off your to-do list and free up more time in your work schedule. Your ability to direct your energy will guarantee you don't fall behind on work and aren't rushing to meet deadlines last minute.

Related: 26 Quick Ways To De-Stress at Work and Why It Matters

4. Produces better quality of work

Your ability to focus is instrumental to your success in the workplace. The more time and concentration you can devote to one task, the greater the quality of work you'll produce. Not only will you be completing tasks quicker, but you'll also ensure they're free from errors.

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