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May 16, 2013

How to Eliminate Distractions

In the workplace, distractions are an everyday occurrence that can significantly lower your productivity. While it may not always be possible to avoid an urgent phone call or emergency meeting, it is important to eliminate as many potential distractions as possible when you are trying to focus on priorities.

Although it may be tempting to close up your office for the day or escape you’re your cubicle when distractions seem insurmountable, that isn’t an option for many people. Here are some tips for handling distractions if you can’t get away from them.

A good solution for managing one of the most common workplace distractions is to shut off the ringer on your phone and let calls roll to voicemail. This gives you time to work uninterrupted while knowing that anything important will be waiting when you are ready to handle calls.

Email is another major distraction. Unless you get paid to answer emails as they arrive, shut it down when you are focusing on a task that doesn’t require email usage. As with the phone, turn off the notification that announces any new emails.

Also, look at all the gadgets and “toys” sitting on your desk. Are they a distraction? Do you find yourself getting distracted by picking them up and playing with them?

When possible, avoid distractions all together. For example, if you know a chatty coworker will likely stop by your desk on his or her way to a meeting, take your break around the time when you expect the coworker to arrive.

Using these tips to take charge of distractions will give you time to handle your priorities and keep you focused on your work.

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