Accomplishing a goal is hard work. When a project feels daunting, even if it is something you are passionate about and want to complete, all the other things on your to-do list, things that are a little more instantly gratifying, like social media, keep sneaking into your thoughts. Those along with the doubts and questions swirling around in your brain can make it nearly impossible to concentrate. Don’t fret. We are here to help.
Check out these seven steps to help you prioritize and clear your mind.
1. Stop multitasking
Instead of trying to do a million things at once, take a step back and tackle one task at a time. And while your inclination might be to start your day with busy work — like checking emails — and then move onto to the harder things, you should try to get your brain moving by challenging yourself with with a bigger, more creative endeavor first thing.
Read more: How to Stay Focused: Train Your Brain
2. Block out your days
A good way to hold yourself accountable when it comes to quieting the noise all around you is to specifically block out time in your day — maybe it’s 30 minutes or an hour — to spend on a given project. Color code your calendar or set a timer to make sure you are accomplishing the goal at hand.
Read more: Are You Singletasking Yet?
3. Get your blood pumping
You can’t focus if your are stuck inside and staring at a screen all day long. Turn off your computer and phone, and go for a walk for 20 minutes. The fresh air and the movement will clear your head. Also make sure that you are drinking enough water and getting enough rest.
Read more: ‘Reboot’ Your Brain and Refresh Your Focus in 15 Minutes or Less
4. Help your technology help you
A platform like RescueTime, a software that runs while you work and shows you how you are spending your day, could help you understand why something is taking longer to complete than it should. Options like Cold Turkey, Freedom and Self Control block out the internet entirely to keep you off your Twitter feed when you should be meeting deadlines.