Beating Distraction, Interruption and Procrastination
The Trifecta of Focus Killers: Distraction, Interruption and Procrastination, and the Work-Changing Habit that Eliminates All Three
Giving something your attention. It sounds simple, doesn’t it? All you have to do is turn off all the distractions and focus. Easy, right? The trouble is it’s usually not that simple. We live in a work world that is FULL of distraction and interruption. That gives us plenty of excuses for procrastination. Fortunately there are ways that you can go about beating distraction, interruption and procrastination.
The ding of a new email arriving in our inbox or the messy desk that must be tidied now (DISTRACTION). The chime of a text from a colleague with a question about work (INTERRUPTION). Or even the temptation to just pop in to social media to see what’s going on (PROCRASTINATION).
Each pulls us away from our focus time, sometimes combining in a grand time vortex conspiracy! It goes like this – you’re procrastinating about a task you aren’t excited about doing. Or maybe feeling a little stuck on. So when that new email or the question from a colleague arrives, you’re more than happy to abandon the undesirable task and focus on the easy alternative.
Repeat this cycle inserting different and various distractions and interruptions. Then it’s easy to see why that yucky tasks sits on your to-do list for weeks, sometimes even months. There’s no shame in admitting to struggling with procrastination. Almost 90% of us do.
Focus Bubbles: A Work-Changing Habit That Eliminates All Three
The solution is simple. Build a Focus Bubble around those tough tasks to protect your time and more importantly, your attention.
What is a Focus Bubble? And how it will change your life
What is a Focus Bubble, you ask? It’s simple. It’s a virtual meeting held over Zoom facilitated by a productivity expert designed to give you 60 or 90 minutes of solid focus time.
Maximize your Focus Bubble by:
Place a regular bubble appointment in your calendar to tackle those troubling tasks. That way you can silence the nagging voice reminding you that task is looming because you have a plan to tackle it.
Let the people around you, whether family or colleagues, know that you are in a meeting. If you work in an open office or at-home, put a sign on your door or slip on headphones to signal others you are in a Focus Bubble.
Honor the time with intentional planning. Come to your bubble with a concrete goal you intend to accomplish during the focus time.
Try habit stacking to add a new positive habit, like drinking water or turning off all telephone and email notifications for an hour. Don’t stop with just one. Once you’ve established new habits, keep going!
This Article is by Richard Green, CFO of Think Productive North America.
Our Master Ninja, Dawn O’Connor is host of the Focus Bubbles Community and Chapter Chair of Calgary Women President’s Organization. Want to try a Focus Bubble? Improve productivity by beating distraction, interruption and procrastination? Use the code NINJAMOVES to try your first Bubble for free!