Forty seconds. That’s how long most people can work on a computer before they are distracted or interrupted. That’s not enough time to get your work done, obviously, so the question becomes: how can you focus better?
Productivity expert Chris Bailey says that we can engage hyperfocus, a mode in which we focus on a single task for a given period. One step to achieving hyperfocus is to rid your environment of distractions. Removing items like your phone from your work area is a good start. Another technique is to clear any internal distractions by writing a to-do list before you get started.
When you’re ready to get to work, go through the items you need to accomplish one at a time. Concentrating on a single task allows your mind to be more productive, encode knowledge, and engage fully. But make sure that you use hyperfocus mode wisely. Employ it only to tackle the most pressing and complex issues, because everyone’s attention span is limited. Learn more in our Instaread on Hyperfocus.