If It's Not On The List... Why Are You Doing It?

It’s no wonder we don’t finish all our work in one day. We are distracted by anything and everything that’s not on our list. One minute, you have your head down working hard and you’re halfway to your finish line. Before you know it, it’s 15 minutes later and you’ve read through stories on how the first man, Meb Keflezighi, has just won the Boston Marathon since 1985.

Three ways to focus your distracted mind:

Stick to your list. It’s extremely easy to become distracted with what everyone else needs from you, but it’s okay to let people know that you are doing something for yourself first—you have permission to make your job a priority over theirs—that’s what you were hired for, right? To make sure you are great at your job? In the office, there definitely is a team environment and you should be willing to help those who need your guidance. Just be sure to let them know when you need to meet with them a little later.

Add to your list. It’s not about remaining busy—it’s about being productive. If the task is worth spending your time on, add it to the list. This will help you track small and big goals you have accomplished this week, and will also help you see your progress. Crossing tasks off your list feels great, too.

Rearrange your list. For some, you work better having your day completely planned out by the hour—and you stick to it. For others, it may be beneficial for you to just make a list and rank from high priority to low priority. You’ll not only meet goals, but you’ll have more than just your toes in the sand.

When the time comes, and you realize you are straying from your job duties, use your list to refocus and pick up where you left off. Don’t let today pass by without furthering your work ethic and work progress.