7 Practical Ways to Stay Focused and Get More Done

1. Use a timer

Having a deadline can be stressful. But sometimes a deadline is just what I need to bring some clarity to the situation. When you have only 15 minutes to complete something, it definitely helps you decide what is important and what can be left out.

The Pomodoro Method

I discovered something a few years back that really changed the game for me, especially when it came to completing billable work. The Pomodoro method is basically the idea of working on one single task for 25 minutes, then taking a 5 minute break to walk around and decide whether to continue or switch tasks. Here are a few tools you can use to implement this method.

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Pomodoro Timer Apps

One great thing about using an app is that it's pretty much always with you. Most of them also offer a ticking sound effect which reminds me constantly that I'm doing a time-sensitive task that needs to be completed and helps me keep from getting distracted.

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Physical Sand Timers

I personally like using a physical timer that sits on my desk. There's something nice about turning one of these over instead of opening yet another app on my phone to set a timer. The only downside is that there is no ticking sound and no bell that goes off at the end, so sometimes I work longer than 25 minutes at a time.

 
Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.
— Parkinson's Law
 

Recommended Tools and Resources

Pomodoro Timer for iOS
Pomodoro Sand Timers on Amazon
Email Snoozer or MacOS


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Benjamin Manley