One of the hardest things for people to do is to finish a project all the way through to the end. It’s easy to start but to see all the way through takes commitment and focus.
Here are some tips on how we do it:
1) Put away your phone.
Secretly we all know our phone is distracting. Though it’s hard to keep it away and before you know it, it’s already too late. It provides an endless stream of distractions. Putting your phone in another room is the perfect way to keep that focus on your main task.
2) mind your environment, your office.
Ask yourself questions like: How likely are you to be interrupted? Is the room quiet? Are there other people? Are there other tasks visible on your desk?
Modifying your environment is one of the most powerful ways to keep your focus on your editing work. Clear clutter out of sight and get comfortable furniture. Dedicate the space as a workspace. Try not to fill it with your hobbies, laundry, or boxes with stuff that stare back from the ground and are looking up at you while whispering ‘’please sort us out’’.
Lighting is a big aspect to editing. You might want your room to be dark to see the colors better but keep in mind that lighting that is too dim can also affect your concentration and vision. The same goes for a room that is too hot or too cold, both can create discomfort. Keep the space neat and ventilated. Next to that, did you ever thought of a getting a office plant? Having a plant in the office doesn’t only increase the air quality but also your concentration and productivity. A must have for your office if you ask us.
3) Clarify the commitment.
Choose what you have to focus on and why. Is this worth my time and energy? Is this going to help me get forward in my goals? We only have limited energy to focus deeply on something each day. Make sure that you do it on something that makes you happy and helps you further in your goals. Be selective. It also helps us not to start doubting ourselves during our task if what we are doing is: the most productive and right thing to do at this moment.
4) Manage your distractions.
Research shows that it takes 25 minutes to get your attention fully back on the task after a distraction. Keeping your distractions to a minimum. Close down the applications on your computer that are not in relation to the task at hand. Such things as e-mails, WhatsApp, internet browsers, and notifications.
Make a distraction-list
There will always be distractions around you. The list of to-do’s that your brain keeps on reminding you. What can help is to write every distraction down. Things you need to show up on. A task that you may not forget, new ideas, etc. In this way you capture the things that creep into your mind. It’ll make you able to re-focus on the tasks you’re doing right now.
For me, it helps to do this analog. Because as soon you get your hands on your phone again. It’s harder to resist the urge to wander off into e-mail or Instagram.
5) Sleep & Caffeine
lack of sleep can lead to a slower thought processes and a reduced focus. Chronically poor sleep further affects your concentration and memory. And because you’re sitting behind a screen for a large portion of the day it’s importuned to get enough shut-eye time. Now it’s a bit hard to use a filter on your computer that reduces blue lights on your screen because it can interfere with the colors in the photos that you are editing. So try to avoid editing late in the day.
Caffeine, Now this is a bit of a tricky one, Because it’s different for a lot of people. But I am at my best in the morning, after 2 cups of coffee. And even though you are probably going to pay for it with a dip later during the day. It can help you to focus on a certain time spot in the day.
6) Select only the best
Don’t take your instincts for granted, you’re most of the time probably right. This saves you a lot of energy and focuses on overthinking things as selections. Go with your gut feeling and kill your darlings. Only go for the best photo’s and find a way to make a quick selection first, and go over these images again for a final cut in your images. Editing only the best images will make it more fun and will keep your focus longer.
7) physical exercises,
Being behind your computer for a long period of time can create tension in your neck, shoulders, arms, and chest. Those little discomforts can affect your concentration. Oxygen for your brain helps with being more relaxed, energetic and it also reduces stress. Going outside for a little walk in the middle of the day could do magic to your focus.
8) Don’t make the task too easy.
Boredom is one of the biggest factors why your mind will start to wonder. Try to find a Comfortable level of difficulty. Not too difficult, but also not too easy that it can be done out of habit.
If a task is difficult it takes up more attention space, That also means that if a task is too simple, you have a lot of attention space that easily slips through other things. While more difficult tasks take up more attention space so there is less extra room for distractions. Also, difficult tasks are most of the time considered more fun.
9) Take mind wonder breaks.
When you notice you start losing focus. (everyone gets to that moment) Don’t force it. When you notice your mind starts to wonder. What you can do is take a step back. Do something mindless. Like cleaning your desk. Go for a walk with the dog. Stare outside the window. Your mind will need a moment to recharge. Setting a 5-minute-timer can help to not roam away in your dreams. Then return to your editing work with a fresh mind. Put the things that come to mind during the break on your distraction list.
Invest in your happiness. The more you invest in becoming happy the more you can focus. When you are depressed or stressed from work or your personal life and feeling down, it is difficult to concentrate and focus. While being happy can give us the confidence and energy to take on the task at hand.