A distraction is anything that takes attention away from a current task. Common distractions include background noise, text messages, ringing phones, and being asked a question or otherwise getting interrupted. Distractions happen all the time in everyday life… the problem is that they often threaten our performance. If you are distracted from your patient, the consequences can be severe.
- Pinpoint the problem. What causes you to be distracted? Is it fatigue, hunger, a Twitter addition? Figuring out the issue is the first step toward trying to fix it.
- Eat a good breakfast. Studies have found that eating breakfast can improve attention and concentration.
- Limit mobile devices. Manage alerts, alarms, and noise. Set aside a specific time to check your phone and try not to check it outside that time.
- Establish “No Interruption Zones”. Preparing a specific diet, arranging medication, or transferring a patient? Get in the zone by tuning everything else out until that task is complete.
- Be mindful. Pay attention to the patient and your purpose as his or her caregiver.