If you work in agency PR, then you know you are constantly pulled in a million directions as important client needs tend to pop up when you’re in the middle of working on something else. Being able to switch gears and get back on track is important to optimizing productivity and meeting client deadlines and requests.

Everyone has their personal tricks to help stay on track throughout the day, but here are a few ideas in case you find yourself struggling to be productive:

  • Take a short break. In a 2008 University of Illinois study, they found that the brain’s attention span drops after a long period of focusing on a single task, which leads to decreased focus and stalled performance. Brief diversions actually are proven to significantly improve performance.
  • Work as a team. More minds, more input, more ideas are generated. Teamwork instills a bond between your coworkers and allows you to expand on each other’s ideas to proactively reach the best solution. If you’re stuck on a project, or suffering from writers block, pick a coworkers brain to help generate some ideas you may not have thought about before.
  • Exercise during your lunch break. Exercising is a great way to relieve stress, increase your energy and refresh your mind. Plus, numerous studies have linked exercise to mood elevation, increased collaboration and productivity enhancement. If you don’t have time for a full-blown workout, take a walk down the street. Take a breath of fresh air and get that blood circulating.
  • Spend less time on meetings and more time executing. Meetings can easily be a time suck, leaving you little time to accomplish what you discussed in your meeting. Try to keep meetings to a minimum and discussions short, so you can use your time to achieve the results you were looking for.
  • Turn off the distractions. In the digital age, it is so easy to get distracted. The ring of a cell phone, ping of an email, the light up on your phone begging you to peek at a tweet. Flip your phone over and check them periodically throughout the day. Or, when you’re working on a project make it a point to finish what you’re doing before you check your email inbox, even if you see two, three or 10 emails come in. Better yet, turn off the notifications on these devices.

These are just a few things that help increase my productivity. What are some things you do to help stay focused to make the most out of your workday?