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SpecialistMichael, MS, CSCS
Category: General
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Experience:  Senior Information Specialist
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How can one get momentum back once they have lost it? Thank

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How can one get momentum back once they have lost it? Thank you for your assistance.
Hello. Can you define me momentum, perhaps as in drive to do something?

Can you give me a bit of history on the situation.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Like at work, I sometimes get interruptions of many different sorts. (For example, a meeting) Next, once I get the interruption over with, I usually have lost the momentum I had which was helping me by giving me the desire to work, and it's hard for me to get back into the groove of working again; I end up feeling like NOT working for the rest of the day, in other words. I think the same thing happens to football teams. When a football team falls behind, makes a drastic misque, or gets severely penalized, they sometimes kind of like need to get momentum back to play as good as they were before. Thank you.

The football analogy is a good one.

I guess that you also don't like meeting in general. When i work in environment that require meeting i always ask the manager to announce them one day in advance or to put in just before or just after the lunch time or just before going home. I also ask them to email me information when possible so i can check on it asynchronously.

Email can also be something that can get you out of your momentum swing. I only have sound notification of email that have "urgent" in the title. Many study showed that email, meeting and coworkers constantly interrupting you can really be counter productive.

The best way is to reduce those interruption to a minimum and make sure the don't last long.

Getting an office with a closed door really help and being able to work from home help even more to reduce distraction.

One way to be able to pick up where you left it is to never really forget the earlier task even when in a meeting.

There is also physical trick like sleeping enough each night. Keeping in good shape (especially physical endurance). Not eating too much (because digesting take of lot of oxygen and can make us slow in the afternoon.

Do not take too many task at once, it will be easier to come back to it. Split your day of work in many small task and try to end those at preselected times. Keeping it as some kind of games with yourself help to keep the attention.

Try to have a station where you can work both up or down and change from one to another from time to time.

Try to arrange your task of the day by their length. Put the smaller one close to the meetings. If you get interrupted in one of those it will be less painful to resume them because they will be almost done. They will also do a catapult effect (i always seem to work faster when i reach the end of something) that will drive you far into the next task.

If the task is complicated, take some note of what you are doing and plan to do in the few next step and why you were doing it that way. When you come back, read back the last 4-5 line of notes and all the things should come back to your mind really fast and put you back into the same momentum. At least you will not feel having to redo work (re-thinking) what was already done

I would not include coffee in this. Coffee is a band-aid solution that only last for sometime until the body learn the trick and counteract it.

Lastly (and bit extreme) change to another job that you are more passionate about.
Martin, Engineer
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Its Mike here again, hope all is well.


I too have had to battle with the loss of momentum, both in a larger sense in my business when I was injured, sick and when a close family member was in a really nasty accident a couple of years ago.

The easiest thing for me is to actually get into a habit, a pattern. Execute this habit each and every time its time to get serious with work or whatever you are trying to focus on

For example if you look at every single high performance athlete, they always have a physical warm up preparation coupled with a mental preparation both before the tournament, game fight, etc.. AND before the specific event, play, round, whatever the case.

I think you need to get yourself a checklist to re-establish your focus once you get pulled away. Whether it be a physical checklist, a mental checklist or a group of activities to physically almost train you to say "OK we are doing this group of activities, time to get back to work".

SpecialistMichael, MS, CSCS
Category: General
Satisfied Customers: 508
Experience: Senior Information Specialist
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