It’s finally summer! Time to enjoy sunshine, picnics, sports, and maybe even a vacation – unless you are a business owner who needs to keep the business running. If you find yourself more distracted during the summer months, you are not alone. So let’s talk about some ways to maintain your focus so that you do have time for fun in the sun.
How is Summer Different from other Seasons?
In the summertime, there are more opportunities to be distracted.
- Children are out of school, so routines have changed. There is less structure, and there are often more demands, whether that’s meals or activities.
- The weather is nicer, which can make it more difficult to focus on your business.
- People tend to be more relaxed. This can make it difficult to focus on tasks that require a lot of concentration. There’s not as much sense of urgency.
All of this can make it difficult to focus on the task at hand.
Steps to Improve Your Focus
- Eliminate distractions. This means turning off your phone, closing your email, and finding a quiet place to work. If you can’t eliminate all distractions, try to minimize them as much as possible.
- If you have children at home, consider hiring a sitter to occupy or transport them while you work.
- Set goals. What do you want to achieve during your summer? Do you want to learn a new skill, roll out a new product, hit certain sales targets, or hire a new team member? Once you know what you want to achieve, you can start to make a plan.
- You can’t make progress unless you know where you are going.
- Make a schedule. Once you know your goals, it’s time to make a schedule. This will help you stay on track and avoid procrastination. When you have specific times set aside for work, you’re more likely to be able to focus on those tasks.
- Book each task on your calendar, and honor that commitment. Be sure to include breaks.
- Find a quiet place to work so you’ll be less likely to be distracted.
- If you cannot be in a quiet place, consider investing in noise cancelling headphones.
- Break down large tasks into smaller ones. Large tasks can be daunting, so it’s helpful to break them down into smaller, more manageable ones.
- Getting started is the hardest part of any project, so start with a small task rather than the whole project.
- Set deadlines for yourself. This will help you stay on track and avoid procrastination.
- Hold yourself accountable for your time.
- Take breaks. It’s important to take breaks throughout the day, even if it’s just for a few minutes. Get up and move around, or step outside for some fresh air.
- It’s always a risk when I step outside since I am tempted to stay outside. I set a timer for myself.
- Reward yourself. When you complete a task, give yourself a small reward. This will help you stay motivated.
- Sometimes the reward is the task is no longer on your To Do List!
Summer should be a time to enjoy people and activities that you can’t do at other times of the year. Having a plan and being mindful of when and how you do things will help you to stay focused on the work that still needs to be done, regardless of the weather. Proper focus and planning will allow you to take full advantage of the season and all that it has to offer.
If you find that you’re still having trouble staying focused, let’s schedule a time to talk about your plans and how to accomplish your goals.
Now let’s go have some ice cream!
Author: Sandy Merritt, Business Coach in Louisville, KY