How many times have you been in a conversation with someone and they don’t remember what you just said? Or worse, they respond with something they were thinking about and immediately you know they weren’t listening to you.
Not much is different in the workplace. Distractions are at an all-time high.
According to statistics gathered from The Brief Lab and NBC Nightly News, 43% of employees abandon lengthy emails in the first 30 seconds and 32% of employees tune out long-winded coworkers after only 15 seconds. Can you believe that those 43% of employees also say they are distracted up to 75% of the work day? (Workplace Distractions)
Think about your typical work day… Emails, texts, social media notifications, phone calls, co-workers stopping by to ask questions or talk, and so much more. Your attention is constantly pulled in multiple directions.
Are you still with me? Because according to the statistics above, you’re possibly a genius if you made it this far. But, let’s keep going…
Many believe that the effect on our attention span is due to technology. We have so much stimulation at all times from smartphones, tablets, game systems, social media and more, that “our brain’s neurons are firing on all cylinders all day long.”
We are constantly bombarded with excessive stimulation and distraction, yet people are expected to focus on the task at hand. And to make matters even worse, if it’s a subject they are not interested in, then they’re twice as likely to lose their focus. Today, people are used to instant gratification and satisfaction!
Take a moment to consider your office. Is there a TV playing, are people working at their desks with headphones in, are their phones and tablets in their hands, literally, at all times? Do you often hear “I am a great multitasker!”?
As you may know, there is no such thing as multitasking. When you have too many things going at once, all of your work will ultimately suffer. The end result of projects might be much better if you could just F-O-C-U-S.
And finally, get an accountability partner. Someone who is not afraid to ask how things are going and make sure that progress is happening.
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