How to focus your attention and improve productivity with 7 simple tips

Ali Raza Updated: February 8, 2021

How to focus your attention and improve productivity with 7 simple tips

Employee productivity is an important aspect in terms of the successful operation of any business. Many employees have problems paying attention at the workplace and it seemed to be a serious problem.

A Udemy survey report shows that 54% of employees are struggling with distraction at their Workplace. It seems like a difficult factor to manage as an employer, but there are certain time tracking apps to improve employee productivity. Apart from this, there are also a few tips that can help your employees focus.

Before you start looking for tips, let’s identify the reasons your employees are facing while focusing at work.

  • Too many unscheduled breaks

At times employees take more breaks constantly as if they are on other works. Rather than getting back to work, they get distracted by doing different things.

  • Employees on their phones

It is well known that smartphones have been the main cause of distraction. Many of us constantly check our smartphones for checking emails, text messages, messengers, etc

  • Poor time management skills

Sometimes people are not good at managing their time though they are good at work. Lack of time management skills can harm your professional reputation and lead to a poor work-life balance.

  • They don’t care

Unless employees don’t believe in a company’s products or services, they usually don’t trust to perform at a higher level.

  • They’re bored

Most passionate employees become unproductive if they have been given boring tasks or been provided with routine tasks. This is true and happens more often at workplaces. Unfortunately, some employees lose enthusiasm to work further.

  • They’re overwhelmed

When employees have too many tasks to complete on time, they feel overwhelmed and absolutely will have no idea from where to start. They will be in a dilemma to discuss it with their respective managers, thinking of the consequences in the wrong way.

7 Tips to Improve Employees Focus

Here’s a list of some of our tips that can be adapted to boost your employee productivity.

1. Let employees know what is acceptable and what is not

Setting rules and expectations will help clear employees’ roadblocks before heading to start. Asking employees whether they need any clarifications will clear them if they have any queries. Online usage policies on the restriction of certain websites or games should be restricted during working hours. Blocking of sites does not work when they would like to access their resources. Instead, with a good monitoring app like Track.ly, you can find this solution as an alternative.

2. Show appreciation

Recognize your employee’s hard work when they do a good job. Reward good work to make your employees motivated by sending an email across the team. Performance bonuses or an extra day off is a fantastic way to do. Positive reinforcement often renders employees courageous to try new things.

3. Define goals properly

Take more effort in defining project goals to get the job done on time. It is important to set goals for the short term and long term. Aligning employee goals with company objectives boosts motivation and trustworthiness to your company.

4. Set deadlines

Set realistic, reasonable tasks, and deadlines to keep your employees on track and focused. Rather than setting huge tasks with deadlines, breakdown tasks to shorter tasks to keep everything on track. Smaller wins have a powerful impact on an employee’s long way. Be sure to offer Positive reinforcement along the way.

5. Introduce flexible work hours & remote work

Productivity among office employees does not happen at the same time of the day. Employee productivity of work depends on their comfortable shifts. Few like to work in the morning and others like to work at night. Allowing employees to work remotely in their flexible shifts can help them stay focused on work with lesser distractions.

6. Don’t assign too many tasks

Many employees are often loaded with tasks adding much more pressure causing them to quit the job. To handle the increased workload, help them do their best by taking help from other team members. Provide them positive feedback and extend the deadline for the project.

7. Invest in their happiness

You need to encourage employees in sharing their likes and dislikes on every facet of their job. Create a positive environment to work as it is important to improve employee motivation. Take time to engage and celebrate community service activities, employee lunches, happy hours to celebrate birthdays and work anniversaries. Know how you can automate your timesheet tracking to get paid on time. If your employees are enjoying the process, their productivity will automatically increase thereby making your process easier and more enjoyable.

Time tracking

Effective monitoring software takes all hassle-free processes of employee’s time tracking making them focused on work. These time tracking apps monitor how much time your employee spends on a specific task giving you accurate ideas on what proportion of time they are idle and active.

Employee monitoring software provides real-time screenshots to see exactly what they’re doing. Save time and money with employee time tracking software, as it is an effective way to increase productivity in the workspace.

The ability to focus all day with all distractions is no wonder employees find it difficult. Making employees happy at work will boost up their work thereby increasing productivity.

How to focus your attention and improve productivity with 7 simple tips

Are you finding it difficult to focus or listen in class, pay attention to your boss in meetings, read a book, or get pretty much anything done? Sometimes even the simplest of tasks can exhaust our easily distracted brains, and it can be impossible to get them done without growing bored or fatigued.

As it turns out, suffering from a poor attention span is a pretty common problem. According to the researchers behind one study conducted at Harvard University, “people spend 46.9 percent of their waking hours thinking about something other than what they’re doing, and this mind-wandering typically makes them unhappy.”

Of course, just knowing you’re not alone in your lack of focus won’t increase your attention span, help you get your assignments in on time, or prompt you in those awkward moments when your teacher or boss asks you a question you can’t answer because you spent the last 20 minutes thinking about what you should have for dinner.

Fortunately, there are things you can do to increase your attention span and make even the longest work or study days a little more bearable.

Here are 10 simple tips on to improve your attention span:

1. Set specific goals.

Making a plan and setting goals keeps your mind on track and rewards your focus. When your mind starts wandering to your favorite video game or that slice of cake in your kitchen, it helps to have a to-do list to refer back to.

Write out some tasks you need to complete, and once you’ve responded to important emails, studied a whole chapter or written a couple of paragraphs of your essay, reward yourself. Many companies use reward strategies as a way to improve employee productivity, and studies have shown that employee incentive programs can increase profits.

Try rewarding yourself with little treats like a snack, or a couple of minutes of listening to your favorite songs.

2. Reduce your screentime.

You might find yourself coming home from work or school and unwinding by watching YouTube videos or scrolling through social media, but this can decrease focus in the long-run.

The internet encourages us to focus on quick reads and short videos before we move on to the next thing. If your brain is accustomed to short bursts of attention between scrolls, it won’t be able to stay on track when you’re in long classes or meetings.

Try listening to music, reading more books or even opting for longer, more mentally stimulating media, like a documentary or film.

3. Get more sleep.

A good night’s rest cures a lot, including a poor attention span. You need to be well-rested so you can sustain eight hours of staring at a computer screen or reading study notes. Try to stick to a regular sleep cycle — and yes, that means no staying up late or sleeping in on the weekends.

Your body has a natural circadian rhythm that thrives when you follow a routine. It also helps to go to bed earlier in the night and wake up earlier in the morning. This is because our bodies are naturally inclined to follow sun patterns.

So, say goodbye to those late-night cramming sessions and get at least 8 hours every night.

4. Meditate.

Meditation isn’t just for yogis — it’s a science-backed way to work on your concentration levels. One study found that meditation training improved cognition, leading to a better mood, increased verbal and non-verbal reasoning, and improved capability for manipulating mental information.

Set aside some time in the morning or throughout your day for some silent meditation. This quick mental reset will refocus you and spur on your productivity.

5. Exercise!

We already know how much exercise improves our physical fitness, but it’s also great training for your mental fitness.

According to one study from the University of Illinois, physical activity increases cognitive control. Students with ADHD who participated in 20 minutes of moderate exercise were able to pay attention longer and scored better on academic achievement tests.

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Implementing a regular exercise routine into your week will benefit your productivity levels in work, school, and life, in general.

6. Take frequent breaks.

Our brains were not made to sustain prolonged periods of concentration, so even though it sounds counterproductive, give yourself plenty of rest throughout your day.

This process on engaging and disengaging your brain can come in a lot of different forms, but one popular method in science is the Pomodoro Technique. This technique breaks a task up into 25-minute blocks, followed by a 5-minute break.

After you’ve repeated this four times, you then take a longer break of around thirty minutes. This is a great way to structure your workload and resist fatigue or boredom.

7. Get outside into nature.

Nature has a powerful impact on our moods and focus. Even if it’s just a quick walk or a couple of minutes sitting in a park, spending time outdoors reduces mental fatigue and restores your attention span.

Use your break time to get some fresh air if you’re feeling a little lethargic. Some research even suggests that looking at greenery through a window or keeping plants in your workspace boosts productivity.

How to focus your attention and improve productivity with 7 simple tips

As you try to concentrate on work, the phone keeps buzzing and e-mail notifications keep pinging. Your attention is stretched thin trying to process all this.

We’ve all been there.

But how can we get anything done this way?

You’re lucky if you can finish anything at all with a scattered state of mind.

After all, multitasking isn’t a virtue. Never was.

In this post, you will learn how to remove certain roadblocks and make way for greater focus and productivity.

We’ll be borrowing tips from productivity literature such as Deep Work, Eat That Frog, and more.

Which leads me to the first and most insidious culprit: Distraction.

Eliminate Distractions

How can you create meaningful work when the threat of distraction is imminent?

Those pesky little invaders can come out of nowhere and fully arrest your attention, making it almost impossible to reel it back to the task at hand.

The good news is, you have control over most of them. And to manage them you simply remove them from your immediate vicinity. For example—your cellphone.

If your phone beckons you to check your social media every five minutes, turn it off, tuck it away in your desk drawer or use time management apps that will prevent you from opening certain applications.

Make a list of your most common distractions​ and become aware of how and when they sneakily waddle into your sphere of attention. Then zap them into oblivion!

Remove them before they make themselves at home in your working and short-term memory. A pristine working memory is your best ally when solving problems or learning new things.

Additionally, productivity experts recommend creating a ​distraction to-do list​, which means you list all of your common distractions and check those off to keep the curiosity at bay when it matters the most.

Much like scheduling interruptions, you also schedule uninterrupted work.

Schedule time of uninterrupted work

This goes hand in hand with removing distractions, but you must take it a step further. You must commit to a specific timeframe (or whatever benchmark method you use to track your progress).

This means telling your spouse, roommates, or co-workers (even your boss!) to not interrupt you unless it’s ​VERY​ urgent.

During this time, your attention is ready to commit fully and drive a project to completion. Brick by brick. Task by task. Until the entire thing is finished.

Some people think of this as a form of meditation. Others call it single-tasking.

Commit to a schedule and don’t deviate.

Here’s a catch, though. What’s the point of laser-focusing on a task if the task isn’t that important?

That’s why you must prioritize.

Prioritize Tasks by Importance

A.k.a. Pareto’s Law. Or the 80/20 principle.

20% of your tasks are responsible for 80% of your desired outcome. This is why it’s extremely crucial to identify the handful of tasks in your to-do list or calendar that will yield most of the results.

Let’s make another list.
Break down your tasks into a list and number each line by importance.

Once you’ve determined your top, most-important tasks, you now have your first plan of attack.

Eventually, you’ll tackle each task on your list, but beginning with the most important ones can create an unstoppable momentum that can make the process faster.

It’s like that famous Elbert Hubbard quote, “if you want something done, ask a busy person to do it.”

In summary:

1. Eliminate distractions.

2. Schedule uninterrupted work.

With a prioritized list of tasks and a scheduled block of time, free of distractions, you will be able to work wonders and get a lot done.

How to focus your attention and improve productivity with 7 simple tips

Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox

How to focus your attention and improve productivity with 7 simple tips

Just nine percent of us are successful in following through on New Year’s resolutions. That low number suggests that maybe, just maybe, creating a resolution that you’re not going to commit to — and then feel guilty about — is a waste of time.

Maybe this year, try something a little different. Let go of the pressure to radically remake your life and hack it instead, with some truly easy ways to improve productivity, cut distractions and see stronger results. For me, this all started with realizing just how dependent on technology I really was (and precisely how bad it is for you — it majorly impacts your memory, according to multiple studies).

You can detach from technology with no ill effects and truly, only benefits in return. Here’s what I did and what’s working for me right now.

1. Remove email from your phone.

Yes, you read that right. Remove email from your phone. Do not conflate responding to email with being productive. I promise you, checking your email 10 times an hour is unnecessary. It’s a soul- and productivity-sucking distraction from the things that actually do demand attention for progress. You’ll still have the ability to login through your browser if absolutely necessary, but checking email only two or three designated times a day from your laptop will massively improve your ability to focus on more important tasks.

2. No phone in the bedroom.

Sleep quality and quantity matters, both for your health and your productivity. Having the phone on your nightstand impacts both, and not in a good way. In fact, the blue light your cell phone emits makes it difficult for your brain to understand it’s night.. Make your bedroom a space that’s truly tranquil. Put your charger and phone in the hallway or a spare room at night, and set an old-fashioned alarm clock. I have one of these and it’s fantastic.

3. Delete Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter.

Social media is like being an unwitting part of a Pavlovian experiment. It’s nearly impossible to resist that unhealthy addiction to all of the likes and comments on your various social media feeds. That tiny hit of dopamine you feel every time a notification pops up also distracts you from whatever it was you were doing that mattered in real life. I found myself checking these sites in the middle of conversations with my wife or in important meetings — but why was I missing the opportunity to connect in person? I didn’t have a good answer.

The solution is simple — delete social media apps from your phone. I can’t overstate the relief I felt after removing Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter and email from my phone. If I need a moment to distract myself when standing in line for coffee, I visit one of two apps, The New York Times or The Wall Street Journal. Better to mindlessly browse something substantive than check out another Biden/Obama meme. It’s also legit to ignore the siren song of technology altogether and simply be present to the beauty of the world around you for a few moments.

4. Leave your phone behind in meetings.

Bring your phone into meetings and cue mindless scrolling during the discussion. You’ll miss the content of the meeting, which is obviously a huge time waste, and you look like a complete ass in the process. Everyone deserves the minimum courtesy of your attention, which you probably expect in return when you talk. And, really, why bother being there at all if you’re not actually going to be present? Encourage others to do the same, and leave their phones behind, particularly if you’re a leader. You’ll be amazed at how much shorter, more productive and substantive your meetings will become.

5. Literally block yourself from viewing certain webpages.

Let your smarter self outmaneuver your in-the-moment impulses. You can use a Chrome extension like Block site to prevent yourself from visiting sites that are good for very little beyond serious distractions. You’ll be surprised at how quickly you forget about spending time on sites where you gain nothing but distract yourself from the more important task at hand and waste precious time in an incredibly short life.

6. Don’t write your emails in an email program.

You’re paragraphs in to writing an important email and then PING. PING! PING! You’ve got mail. There is nothing more distracting and counterproductive than getting notified you have new mail. Who could it be? What do they want? Maybe it’s important, something time sensitive. Maybe even more important than coordinating with a colleague on your presentation to your boss. Nope, it’s somebody confirming a meeting that’s two weeks out. Whew, glad you got that one out of the way! But thanks to jumping from writing your email to checking the new one, you’ve completely interrupted your line of thinking.

Close your browser, set your phone aside, and write important emails in Word, Dropbox or some other low distraction tool. Then cut and paste before sending.

7. Focus on just three to five important tasks each day.

Make a short list of three to five things you want to get done each day and no more. I know a very successful entrepreneur who makes a list of three items — max — to get done each morning. Getting only one done is a bad day; two is a good day, and three a great day. This trick is great because it’s really less about making a to-do list and more about clarifying and honing your priorities.

Taking your inbox to zero, for example, is not a task that should ever be on this list. Think instead about the next major piece of work to drive the product roadmap forward, building and communicating the schedules for key milestones in advance of an important meeting, or adding slides to the sales deck that represents a new product or feature. To make the list, the work better be really significant.

Making progress on a small number of vital projects will yield far greater long-term results than knocking off dozens or more meaningless items on a long to-do list.

In the ever-evolving world of technology, our brain’s ability to concentrate on a central task has become harder and harder. With the right mindset and practice, you can train your mind to stay present. Understanding the benefits of staying focused can be crucial to our success and will help us gauge where we can improve in our professional careers. In this article, we define focus and provide you with the tips to implement proper concentration with minimal distractions in the workplace.

What is focus?

Focus is how someone pays attention or concentrates on a particular person or thing. When someone is focused, their attention is centered on a focal point. In terms of the workplace, an employee is focused when their attention is geared toward completing their main goal or objective.

Benefits of being focused

Staying committed to a central task can be greatly beneficial in the workplace. No matter the industry you work in, increasing your attention span can propel your professional success. Here are four benefits of being focused:

1. Builds momentum

When you stay focused on one assignment, you’re more apt to complete it with greater efficiency. Your ability to finish tasks at a quicker pace can motivate you to move onto the next. Knowing you’re capable of getting things done will help you stay positive and motivate you to achieve your next goal.

2. Increases productivity

The more you’re able to stay on task, the more tasks you’ll be able to complete overall. Minimizing distractions is a great way to stay in the zone and allow your brain to process what needs your attention. As a working professional, you’re more apt to get more work done when you centralize your attention.

3. Reduces stress

By staying on task and increasing your productivity, you’ll also be minimizing any tension and pressure that’s built up. When you’re focused on one sole assignment, you’re able to check more items off your to-do list and free up more time in your work schedule. Your ability to direct your energy will guarantee you don’t fall behind on work and that you aren’t rushing to meet deadlines last minute.

4. Produces better quality of work

Your ability to focus is instrumental to your success in the workplace. The more time and concentration you’re able to devote to one task, the greater the quality of work you’ll produce. Not only will you be completing tasks quicker, but you’ll also be ensuring they’re free from errors.

How to stay focused in the workplace

Here are 10 things to consider when trying to stay focused in the workplace:

1. Eliminate distractions

You will be more productive and have a better chance of staying focused when you remove anything in your surroundings that might cause interruptions. If feasible, try keeping your phone in a different room or staying offline to minimize distractions. Working alone or in a quiet environment will also make you more focused.

2. Prioritize your tasks

If you have a lengthy number of tasks to complete, it can be beneficial to not only create a to-do list, but to also rank each item by their level of importance. This will allow you to methodically work through your tasks instead of simply be overwhelmed and likely ineffectual.

3. Train your mind

Engaging in various brain training activities is a great way to improve your cognitive abilities and subsequently, your ability to stay focused. When you instruct your brain to become more disciplined, you can become more active in paying attention to the task in front of you.

4. Work in a quiet space

When you’re working alone or in a secluded area, you’re more apt to get more work done. A quiet environment ensures you won’t be interrupted by colleagues or other noisy distractions from your workplace environment.

5. Try meditation

Taking the time to relax, breathe and meditate can greatly improve your cognitive abilities. Try practicing yoga to strengthen your ability to concentrate in the workplace.

6. Exercise

Exercising regularly stimulates your brain and keeps it refreshed. Engaging in physical activity will also improve memory capacity and overall concentration. Not only will it help you stay energized, but it’ll also give you the extra boost you need to stay on task at work.

7. Take breaks

Taking time for yourself is a great way to avoid burnout. While steadily completing tasks is important, giving your mind time to recharge and relax can be greatly beneficial for your mental health. If you’re stuck on a task, walking away for a short while can provide you with a fresh perspective. Taking a break and allowing your brain time to shutdown can also provide you with the momentum you need when you return to work.

8. Get a good night’s sleep

Sleeping at least eight hours a night is a great way to make sure you’re in your best physical and mental state when you arrive at work. Being sleepy causes you to slow down. Getting a good night’s rest, on the other hand, allows you to remain alert and awake—especially during the morning hours.

9. Focus on one thing at a time

When you direct your attention toward one sole task, your risk of distraction minimizes. Rather than multitasking, keep your brain actively engaged on one thing at a time. Increase your quality of work and your attention span by focusing on one task first, then move onto the next.

10. Allot time to certain tasks

When determining what tasks you need to complete, consider the length of time you’ll need to complete each. Scheduling out your day and exercising your time management skills will help you complete your work more efficiently and help you stay on top of it all. For example, allot 8-10 a.m. to complete task one, 10-11 a.m. to complete task two and so forth.

Learning how to focus by applying helpful tactics to improve your attention span can help you become a better employee. Though distractions are bound to arise, learning how to deal with them as well as determining what will work well for you, are great starting points to consider.

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How to focus your attention and improve productivity with 7 simple tips

What is Productivity?

Let’s define productivity. Productivity is a measure of efficiency of a person completing a task. We often assume that productivity means getting more things done each day. Wrong. Productivity is getting important things done consistently. And no matter what you are working on, there are only a few things that are truly important.

Being productive is about maintaining a steady, average speed on a few things, not maximum speed on everything.

My Top Productivity Strategies

  • Eliminate Time Wasting Activities by Using the Eisenhower Box: This simple decision matrix will help you take action, organize tasks, and get more done. The great thing about this matrix is that it can be used for broad productivity plans (“How should I spend my time each week?”) and for smaller, daily plans (“What should I do today?”).
  • Warren Buffett’s “2 List” Strategy: How to Maximize Your Focus and Master Your Priorities: This method comes from the famous investor Warren Buffett and uses a simple 3-step productivity strategy to help you determine your priorities and actions. You may find this method useful for making decisions and getting yourself to commit to doing one thing right away.
  • The Ivy Lee Method: The Daily Routine Experts Recommend for Peak Productivity: This productivity strategy is straightforward: Do the most important thing first each day. The Ivy Lee Method is a dead simple way to implement this strategy.
  • The 15-Minute Routine Anthony Trollope Used to Write 40+ Books: There is one common problem with the approach of ranking your priorities and doing the most important thing first, though. After ranking your priorities for the day, if the number one task is a really big project then it can leave you feeling frustrated because it takes a long time to finish. Writer Anthony Trollope, however, developed a solution to this common problem.

More Productivity Ideas

Most productivity strategies focus on short-term efficiency: how to manage your to-do list effectively, how to get more done each morning, how to shorten your weekly meetings, and so on. These are all reasonable ideas.

We often fail to realize, however, that there are certain strategic choices we need to make if we want to maximize our productivity for the long-term. In these articles below, I break down some ideas about long-term productivity.

Looking for more articles about productivity? I have a full list at the bottom of this page.

Simple Ways to Be More Productive Every Day

Step 1: Manage your energy, not your time.

If you take a moment to think about it, you’ll probably realize that you are better at doing certain tasks at certain times. What type of energy do you have in the morning? Afternoon? Evening? Determine what tasks each energy level and time of day are best suited for.

Step 2: Prepare the night before.

If you only do one thing each day then spend a few minutes each night organizing your to–do list for tomorrow. When I do it right, I’ll outline the article I’m going to write the next day and develop a short list of the most important items for me to accomplish. It takes 10 minutes that night and saves 3 hours the next day.

Step 3: Don’t open email until noon.

Sounds simple. Nobody does it. It took me awhile to get over the urge to open my inbox, but eventually I realized that everything can wait a few hours. Nobody is going to email you about a true emergency (a death in the family, etc.), so leave your email alone for the first few hours of each day. Use the morning to do what’s important rather than responding to what is “urgent.”

Step 4: Turn your phone off and leave it in another room.

Or on your colleague’s desk. Or at the very least, put it somewhere that is out of sight. This eliminates the urge to check text messages, Facebook, Twitter, and so on. This simple strategy eliminates the likelihood of slipping into half–work where you waste time dividing your attention among meaningless tasks.

Step 5: Work in a cool place.

Have you ever noticed how you feel groggy and sluggish in a hot room? Turning the temperature down or moving to a cooler place is an easy way to focus your mind and body. (Hat tip to Michael Hyatt for this one.)

Step 6: Sit up or stand up.

When you sit hunched over, your chest is in a collapsed position and your diaphragm is pressing against the bottom of your lungs, which hinders your ability to breathe easily and deeply. Sit up straight or stand up and you’ll find that you can breathe easier and more fully. As a result, your brain will get more oxygen and you’ll be able to concentrate better.

Step 7: Develop a “pre–game routine” to start your day.

My morning routine starts by pouring a cold glass of water. Some people kick off their day with ten minutes of meditation. Similarly, you should have a sequence that starts your morning ritual. This tiny routine signals to your brain that it’s time to get into work mode or exercise mode or whatever mode you need to be in to accomplish your task. Additionally, a pre–game routine helps you overcome a lack of motivation and get things done even when you don’t feel like it.

How much time and consideration do you really give to your brain? Do you marvel at its supreme power, cleverness, and the fact that this huge muscle is in constant control of your body? Do you ever take the time to give your brain a much-needed spring cleaning and an occasional tune-up?

How to focus your attention and improve productivity with 7 simple tips

Mar 2 · 4 min read

If you’re like most people, you probably answered “no” to each of these questions. Your brain is working long hours for you on a daily basis, but you most likely rarely give it a thought.

It may not be at the forefront of your mind to give your brain a r efurbishing, but this is not surprising due to human history. In fact, scientists even thought at one time that individuals were trapped with the knowledgeable muscle that they were given, so they saw no viable reason to attempt to make any improvements. Thankfully, that thought process went out the window with the birth of a new scientific theory in the 1970s called neuroplasticity.

Neuroplasticity has proven our brains have the ability to change. Instead, with the proper training, you have the ability to change and repower your knowledge. One way to look at this is with the following phrase: The brain is a muscle that requires some daily exercise.

The exciting part is you don’t have to be rich to improve your brain power. Nor do you have to hit the books and go back to school. All you need to train the brain is a little bit of time and effort. To that end, Wrike has compiled 7 productivity tips every entrepreneur needs to know so that you can utilize to boost your brain’s ability to retain information and increase your intelligence.

This is the easiest method, as it simply involves closing your eyes and taking command of your breathing. As your mind begins to drift, try to focus your attention solely on your breathing. A simple five to ten minutes of meditation per day can promote relaxation, clear the mind and prepare you for any mental activities that you encounter. This can be especially critical when you’re stressed or having a challenging day at work.

Regular exercise can have a positive influence on your brain functioning because it enhances the development and growth of the nervous tissue. What this means is that every time you work out, you’ll begin to develop new brain cells. You’ll also keep your body more focused and trained on dealing with one grueling activity at a time, and your risk of developing dementia will be reduced. In other words, get off the couch and get moving. Your brain is going to thank you for it later on.

You can use writing as a creative method for teaching your memory how to clarify your thoughts. It’s also an important way to remember things and exercise your analytical abilities. Diaries, journaling, poetry, story writing and note taking are all excellent ways to strengthen your brain power. While you don’t have to be a Pulitzer Prize winner, this simple act can better the brain, even if it’s something that’s written for your eyes only.

A University of California study found that children who studied piano or sang regularly had a better ability to solve puzzles. They also scored approximately 80 percent higher in spatial intelligence than those who didn’t. Another study found that those who listened to a Mozart sonata for approximately 10 minutes, followed by relaxation and silence, scored significantly better for a short period of time.

A healthy diet can be instrumental in the brain’s ability to function. In fact, the brain is responsible for consuming approximately 20% of the nutrients and oxygen that your body takes in. Due to this, it is vital to eat plenty of fruits of vegetables, and make sure you get enough omega-3 fatty acids.

Sleep not only feels good but it is also the brain’s way of detoxifying. When the body is able to rest, it enables your brain to remove toxins and regenerate cells. According to the National Sleep Foundation, adults between the ages of 26 and 64 need to get seven to nine hours of sleep every night for optimal results.

If you want to take advantage of other great methods that will boost your mental juice be sure to check out the infographic , “50 Productivity Tips to Boost Your Brain Power” by Wrike.

How to focus your attention and improve productivity with 7 simple tips

Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox

How to focus your attention and improve productivity with 7 simple tips

Just nine percent of us are successful in following through on New Year’s resolutions. That low number suggests that maybe, just maybe, creating a resolution that you’re not going to commit to — and then feel guilty about — is a waste of time.

Maybe this year, try something a little different. Let go of the pressure to radically remake your life and hack it instead, with some truly easy ways to improve productivity, cut distractions and see stronger results. For me, this all started with realizing just how dependent on technology I really was (and precisely how bad it is for you — it majorly impacts your memory, according to multiple studies).

You can detach from technology with no ill effects and truly, only benefits in return. Here’s what I did and what’s working for me right now.

1. Remove email from your phone.

Yes, you read that right. Remove email from your phone. Do not conflate responding to email with being productive. I promise you, checking your email 10 times an hour is unnecessary. It’s a soul- and productivity-sucking distraction from the things that actually do demand attention for progress. You’ll still have the ability to login through your browser if absolutely necessary, but checking email only two or three designated times a day from your laptop will massively improve your ability to focus on more important tasks.

2. No phone in the bedroom.

Sleep quality and quantity matters, both for your health and your productivity. Having the phone on your nightstand impacts both, and not in a good way. In fact, the blue light your cell phone emits makes it difficult for your brain to understand it’s night.. Make your bedroom a space that’s truly tranquil. Put your charger and phone in the hallway or a spare room at night, and set an old-fashioned alarm clock. I have one of these and it’s fantastic.

3. Delete Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter.

Social media is like being an unwitting part of a Pavlovian experiment. It’s nearly impossible to resist that unhealthy addiction to all of the likes and comments on your various social media feeds. That tiny hit of dopamine you feel every time a notification pops up also distracts you from whatever it was you were doing that mattered in real life. I found myself checking these sites in the middle of conversations with my wife or in important meetings — but why was I missing the opportunity to connect in person? I didn’t have a good answer.

The solution is simple — delete social media apps from your phone. I can’t overstate the relief I felt after removing Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter and email from my phone. If I need a moment to distract myself when standing in line for coffee, I visit one of two apps, The New York Times or The Wall Street Journal. Better to mindlessly browse something substantive than check out another Biden/Obama meme. It’s also legit to ignore the siren song of technology altogether and simply be present to the beauty of the world around you for a few moments.

4. Leave your phone behind in meetings.

Bring your phone into meetings and cue mindless scrolling during the discussion. You’ll miss the content of the meeting, which is obviously a huge time waste, and you look like a complete ass in the process. Everyone deserves the minimum courtesy of your attention, which you probably expect in return when you talk. And, really, why bother being there at all if you’re not actually going to be present? Encourage others to do the same, and leave their phones behind, particularly if you’re a leader. You’ll be amazed at how much shorter, more productive and substantive your meetings will become.

5. Literally block yourself from viewing certain webpages.

Let your smarter self outmaneuver your in-the-moment impulses. You can use a Chrome extension like Block site to prevent yourself from visiting sites that are good for very little beyond serious distractions. You’ll be surprised at how quickly you forget about spending time on sites where you gain nothing but distract yourself from the more important task at hand and waste precious time in an incredibly short life.

6. Don’t write your emails in an email program.

You’re paragraphs in to writing an important email and then PING. PING! PING! You’ve got mail. There is nothing more distracting and counterproductive than getting notified you have new mail. Who could it be? What do they want? Maybe it’s important, something time sensitive. Maybe even more important than coordinating with a colleague on your presentation to your boss. Nope, it’s somebody confirming a meeting that’s two weeks out. Whew, glad you got that one out of the way! But thanks to jumping from writing your email to checking the new one, you’ve completely interrupted your line of thinking.

Close your browser, set your phone aside, and write important emails in Word, Dropbox or some other low distraction tool. Then cut and paste before sending.

7. Focus on just three to five important tasks each day.

Make a short list of three to five things you want to get done each day and no more. I know a very successful entrepreneur who makes a list of three items — max — to get done each morning. Getting only one done is a bad day; two is a good day, and three a great day. This trick is great because it’s really less about making a to-do list and more about clarifying and honing your priorities.

Taking your inbox to zero, for example, is not a task that should ever be on this list. Think instead about the next major piece of work to drive the product roadmap forward, building and communicating the schedules for key milestones in advance of an important meeting, or adding slides to the sales deck that represents a new product or feature. To make the list, the work better be really significant.

Making progress on a small number of vital projects will yield far greater long-term results than knocking off dozens or more meaningless items on a long to-do list.