I am doing a Single Tasking Experiment to see if I can gain better concentration and control over my time/thoughts. I am thinking of it as mindfulness at work (#zenwork). So far this week it has been hit or miss with trying to do either the phone or email. It is just too easy to quickly check an email while I am on the phone. The problem with this is that you don't know what is coming into your inbox and it can completely derail you from your conversation. So much so that you are either not responding or grunting in approval. Not exactly full participation.
How to Stay Focused on One Task:
- If I am on the phone, either shut the laptop or put down the iPad. If it is left in my hands or it is open I can't seem to look away from the screen. I am like a crow and I like shiny things.
- Walk away from the devices. Just get up and walk around while talking. We shouldn't be sitting so long anyway, it is bad for our health.
- Only answer the phone when you actually have time to talk. If you are engrossed in a project, answering email, or doing something else; let voice-mail get it. It would be better to call them back then to have a distracted phone call.
So far, so good. I have 4 more days to go before I add another component to the project, but if I follow the above I have a good start at being able to pay more attention.