Concentration: 4 tips to stay efficient despite multitasking

Juggling between different subjects, receiving phone calls while answering a text message… The daily life of the entrepreneur and the stress that accompanies it are full of opportunities to lose track!

To improve your concentration, it is essential to clear your mind. Advice from Xavier Delengaigne, trainer and co-author of the book “The toolbox to improve your memory and concentration”, published in September 2021 by Dunod editions.

#1. clear your head

Every entrepreneur has an interest in improving his concentration to be more efficient in his daily life, but also his memory, in order to boost his creativity. But that’s often easier said than done, there are so many distractions.

“There are two kinds: external distractions – someone passing by your desk or a notification on your laptop – and internal distractions – like thinking about something you should or should have done then. that you are in the process of making another one, sums up Xavier Delengaigne. A simple way to avoid this is to clear your head. »

This advice is based on a cognitive phenomenon identified by researcher Bluma Zeigarnik that we retain unfinished tasks more than completed tasks. She realized this by observing restaurant servers who had no trouble remembering orders and forgot them as soon as they were served. To prevent ongoing tasks from polluting your mind, simply write them down in a diary or task manager. “People don’t use these tools too much. However, it’s a good way to free your mind and focus on one task at a time”, adds the trainer in knowledge management, communication and mind mapping.

#2. Take breaks

The other secret to staying focused better and longer is to agree not to overdo it. “Human beings are not made to remain attentive for long: in general, no more than twenty minutes. It may therefore be relevant to opt for methods of work time sequencingsuch as the Pomodoro method – “tomato” in Italian – and which uses a timer, most often in the shape of a tomato.

The principle is simple: we divides work time into 25-minute intervalsseparated from each other by 5 minute break during which we do nothing or something that has absolutely nothing to do”, explains Xavier Delengaigne. Longer breaks are of course also recommended, just to get your head off the handlebars… something that entrepreneurs don’t always do, especially in the creation phase. “However, it is during these phases of rest that the brain takes time to store information. It is also at this time that he finds solutions, so it is essential to alternate moments of concentration with moments of wandering. »

#3. Create routines

To lighten the mental load even more – and therefore promote concentration and memory – it is also recommended to set up routines at the beginning or end of the day, as many great entrepreneurs already do.

“Many people start the day by reading their emails: it’s not a good thing at all. Better start with plan your day and waiting until the middle of the day to do things like processing his inbox. The human brain is not made to store too many elements, but to have creative ideas. It must therefore be relieved with, for example, routines. »

In the same logic, these routines make it possible to preserve your decision capital. “We all have decision capital every day, assures Xavier Delengaigne. Be sure to keep it for important decisions and not to start it as soon as you wake up to find out how you are going to dress! »

#4. Organize your time

In short, to be more efficient, you have to better organize your time. “A bit like Elon Musk with his technique of Timeboxing : this consists of divide your day into different blocks of time where each block corresponds to a specific task. By blocking time slots in this way, you can better manage the balance between personal and professional life, respect your working hours, and allow your mind not to mix up several things at the same time. » A welcome mental relief in the era of the multiple solicitations of our attention.

“The toolbox to improve your memory and concentration”, Xavier Delengaigne (in photo) and Cyril Maitre, Dunod editions, September 2021, 208 pages.
– Photo DR

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