One of the most important things you need to do is plant your butt in the seat during work hours. Make sure other chores are done and not a distraction for you. Either do them before or after work hours—like normal working people do. That’s one of the biggest obstacles of working from home, especially for women, single men or couples that share household tasks. There’s always laundry, dishes and other things that need to be done and it’s so easy to think you can take care of those and work at the same time. For most of us it just doesn’t work. I’ve tried it both ways and my work hours are more productive if I concentrate on work and leave “home” work to its own schedule.
Another important aspect of reaching your goals is enthusiasm. If you lose your enthusiasm you will lose sight of your goals. Staying committed or even re-committing to your goals on a regular basis will help you stay motivated and enthused. Read over your list of goals as often as you need to.
Make your goals a priority. If they aren’t a priority, you’ll never reach them. Learning to focus should also be considered a priority so you’ll work on it.
Dedicate 30 minutes per day to working on your goals and staying focused on them for the entire 30 minutes. More often than not you’ll find yourself inspired to work past the 30 minutes and you will make progress. If 30 minutes is all you manage in any given day, then be satisfied with that. You’ve crossed a major hurdle already.
Starting is the hardest part, so make it a point to start. Once you get started you should find that you’re able to keep moving forward.
Balance working on your goals with your recreational activities. You may need to give up some recreation time to focus on your goals, but don’t give up too much of that time. All work and no play will soon wear thin and cause unwanted and unneeded stress in your life.
Create your own motivation. Listening to motivational speakers is a great way to keep motivated but it’s not always convenient and eventually you need to create your own motivation that you can tap into anytime you need it.
Give yourself rewards for accomplishing tasks. In fact, make your whole journey a reward. Celebrate every obstacle you overcome, every small step you take or task you complete. Instead of worrying about how far away the main goal is, be positive in the here and now with each milestone you cross.
If you complete those 30 minutes of focused work, give yourself a cookie or something, anything that feels like a reward. You’ve earned it and you deserve it so treat yourself.
Push yourself once in awhile. If you’ve reached the 30 minute mark, push yourself to go for another 30 minutes before you enjoy the reward. Doing this constantly will not produce better results; in fact it will probably create burn out, but if you push yourself once in awhile (at least once a week) it will become easy and help build your focus muscles.
Be consistent by working on your goals daily. Instead of spending one day per week working on goals for 8 hours, spend a little time each day so by the end of the week you’ve accumulated 8 hours of working on goals. If you only work on your goals one day per week it’s the equivalent of starting over from scratch each time. But if you build on the day before with a smaller chunk of time, the accumulative effects are far greater.
Be mindful with your 30 minutes per day. This means to fully concentrate on the task at hand and not let other thoughts wander in; stop thinking about your grocery list, who’s responded to your message on social networks, what’s for dinner. Be present in the moment and focus all of your attention on what you’re doing for that 30 minute period. It will be difficult and you will catch your mind wandering more than you ever realized, but once you start becoming aware of it, you realize just how wishy washy the mind can be…it likes to go places, with or without your knowledge, so be mindful and keep it focused on the matter at hand.
Make a commitment to yourself to stay focused for longer periods of time and keep plugging away at it until it becomes second nature. It won’t be easy, but it can be done.
Do you have any tips for staying focused on your goals? We would love to hear your tips and tricks.