On the last working day of the year, the office is quiet and you are prepared to take advantage of it to get caught up on your work. The phone rings. You sigh.
Another stressful interruption.
According to Fast Company the average office worker is interrupted and taken off task every 11 minutes. Even worse, they say that it takes basically that much time to refocus on the task at hand. Often, we end up compensating for interruptions by working faster and harder, which results in us experiencing more stress. We need to find ways to avoid interruptions at work.
Interruptions happen, but often we make them even more stressful by our interpretation of the interruption. Click to tweet
How Do We Handle Interruptions?
We get frustrated, patient, annoyed, angry, defeated. The key to avoid interruptions at work is to find productive ways to minimize and deal with them and keep our emotions in check.
Beverly’s Hot Tips For Building Our Resiliency and Dealing With Interruptions:
- Plan for interruptions. Know the type of interruptions that you usually encounter and when they are most likely to occur. Most interruptions are not totally unexpected. They are usually a normal part of our job.
- Limit the opportunities for people to distract you. If you need time to concentrate on a particular task, block it off in your schedule and let colleagues know that you are not available until a certain time. Turn off your phone and your email notifiers. Shut the door. Book a meeting room just for yourself.
- Take control of technology, especially social media and email that are enticing in nature.
- Put an end to the interruption of a chatty co-worker by being social at break times and lunch hours which will minimize social visits during your work time.
More Tips to Avoid Interruptions At Work…
- Be realistic in planning the time it takes to complete various tasks. Many of us are good at under-estimating the time tasks take and over-estimating the amount of work that we can accomplish in a given day.
- Prioritize your daily to-do list and if you do get interrupted ALWAYS go back to where you were before the interruption. Try to regain and gather back your thoughts and ideas from the point where you left off.
- Watch for your own personal interrupters. A messy desk, hunger, thirst and curiosity all get in our own way of being as productive as we can. Organize yourself prior to starting your focused time, not during it.
If you have some strategies to share – comment on this posting!