Decided to revisit a post from my old blog Just, this is because I have been very distracted lately and I am 6 blog post behind. I am not giving up however I really need to manage my distractions.
Today I wanted to focus on how distractions can get in the way of getting our important jobs done. My problem lately is that I am always so busy yet I don’t get the jobs done that I want to get done. I usually start my day with a to-do list of six important tasks or activities I want to get done. However recently I have noticed that I am allowing distractions to get in the way of completing my list.
I think the first question to ask is what are the distractions? Well for me they are the following:
- · Housework
- · Children
- · Internet
- · Phone calls
- · Walking
The second question to ask is why I allow these distractions to interrupt my productivity in achieving completing my to-do list?
Well I feel guilty if my house is a mess. I also guess I am concerned about what people might think. They may think that I am lazy if my house is less than perfect. The other distractions I actually enjoy, it is just the randomness and timing of them that is the problem. There is also the issue of moderation. Many times the problem is that I over indulge in some of these activities like housework and the Internet.
Third Question is what are the possible solutions? For me it is a case of managing my distractions and having more control over them. Some of the strategies I hope to apply from today onwards are as follows:
· Giving housework a set amount of time e.g. 1 hour a day and setting specific tasks e.g. floors Tuesday, Bathrooms Wednesday, Shopping Thursday, and Ironing Friday etc. That way I know that the work is getting done and will not feel so guilty.
· Phone calls; I will respond to social calls in the evening. I have an answering machine and voice mail. I could also let family and friends know that this is my preference. This will eliminate the distractions from phone calls during the most productive part of my day.
· I will check email briefly in the morning for 15 minutes responding to urgent emails. Then allow myself time in the afternoon to check emails. This also will eliminate distractions from the most productive part of my day.
· The Internet, I will allow myself some time during the evenings to enjoy the Internet, social media, and podcasts. However it will be a choice between watching TV or surfing the Internet.
· Children. Well I consider my children beautiful distractions. So the best option for me is to be doing my work during school hours. It is also that I focus on making this time the most productive, so eliminating distractions from this time of the day will allow me to get my work done.
· Walking, I love walking and have a tendency to over indulge in it. I will make this my reward. I will allow myself 1 hour a day to take my dog Miss Popularity for a relaxing walk. After all if managed correctly walking can clear my mind, rejuvenate me, and even assist me to have fresh ideas.
Ask yourself those questions three questions:
1. What distractions in your own life stop you from doing the activities and work that you want to be doing?
2. Why do you let those distractions into your life?
3. What are the possible solutions?
I don’t believe we can eliminate all distractions from our life, but we can certainly manage them in away that suits our lifestyle and allows us to be more productive and achieve our goals. With a combination of self – reflection and problem solving skills we can all manage our distractions.