The world is full of distractions. Especially in the day and age of the internet and technology, our sources of entertainment are limitless. We have video games and television shows, we have the internet and social media, and we have easy access to the newest craze online. If we let ourselves get distracted, it will take us a long time to finish our work. Sometimes, we also procrastinate knowing we have enough time before the deadline. How to focus on writing and free yourself from interruptions? How do you keep your attention from getting diverted to something else?
How to Focus On Writing: 4 Easy and Practical Steps to Follow
1. Remove distractions
What better way to avoid distractions than removing it in the first place? Turn off the TV if you get distracted by the noise. Close all chat windows and social media. Turn off your phone or put in on silent mode.
I like to listen to music when I work but when I need to think, research or write I opt for instrumental music or peaceful piano music. I still get my dose of soothing melody, but at least the words in the lyrics don’t distract me.
If you live with other people, let them know to be quiet at certain hours or to keep the noise down when they are near your workplace.
Some people get distracted by their pets. You may also arrange for someone to look over them while you are “in the zone” and working on your story.
2. Start a routine
Although it is good to have a magical moment when inspiration suddenly strikes, it is better to have a routine. Write at a specific hour of the day. Start a routine and respect your schedule. Setting up a routine trains your mind that at this certain time, you need to write something or work on a project. In time, your body will automatically work as programmed and it will not be too hard to focus on writing.
Meditation has many benefits in the holistic health of the body. Most importantly, meditation helps sharpen your concentration and boosts the brain’s ability to focus. Meditation helps keep your mind off the unnecessary so you can give more attention to what matters most. If you want to focus on your writing, meditate first. Clear your head from worries, distractions, and toxic thoughts. Open your mind to allow ideas to come in.
4. Walk away
If trying to focus becomes too tough, walk away. Take a walk, watch a movie, dance, grab a bite, or take a nap. Have a break. Play with your pet. Walk away from your desk and allow your mind to wander somewhere else. If you find yourself too stressed out to write, give yourself a breather.
A crammed brain does not make a good writing condition. Walking away can help reboot your brain so you can focus better the next time you start writing again. In short, allow yourself to get distracted for a short time. But be aware of it and most of all be aware of the time you entertain distractions. Give it a limit.
Imagine how many stories you could write or articles you could finish if you don’t get distracted in one day. How many minutes have you wasted checking on social media or your emails before you start writing?
Temptations are everywhere and even the best of us fall under its trap once in a while. No one can help you when other things seem to be more appealing to do than writing. You are the only person who can stop yourself from procrastinating. Help yourself get your focus back so you can do what you are supposed to be doing in the first place -writing.
Somehow listening to music while doing a task never works for me. I try, but then it ends up distrating me even more and takes me down the rabbit hole of finding more music. Walking away definitely works. Gives a fresh perspective and makes some space for new ideas.
Rajlakshmi recently posted…Mayurasana | Peacock Pose Practice
Every point made here is so relevant. For someone who struggles to make time for doing what I love, writing, these are something I need to practise more.
I try to follow these steps. It usually helps me but I also get easily distracted by social media. This is an area that I am struggling with.
All very handy tips for writers to enhance their focus, particularly, at a time when distractions reign large and the mind wanders off at the first instance! I follow all of them, on most days. Can vouch for consistency as one of the best habits for writers to imbibe!
Thanks for sharing this wonderful post with us, Corinne.
Esha recently posted…Time | #FictionMonday
I follow each of these points when I sit down to write, at the same time every day, with the notifications switched off. Even if I can get 500 words done, I feel content that I did not waste my time. It has become a habit now and I feel like it’s an accomplishment!
All of these are valid points, Corinne. The external noises are a serious distraction for me, but I can work with it if I get some solitude sometime during the day to recharge. With COVID though, I can’t get rid of the sounds at home. Writing is becoming a luxurious activity. 😀
Vinitha recently posted…Fiction Monday – 12
Personally I cannot work when listening to music, I get too absorbed in it. But all other points definitely help. I really need to follow them.
Dashy recently posted…Abstraction