How do you feel about last year? I'm sure there were more things that you wanted to accomplish. The top of a new year is the time when we all write our long list of new years resolutions. While well intentioned, distractions often end up causing us not to complete much or any of that list. Today I want to discuss 5 ways of keeping a lid on distractions! Hope it helps!
Make Yourself Unavailable
Phones are unequivocally distracting. With every ping and ding, we end up checking our phones every 5 minutes (or less sadly). This has led to us being one of the most distracted generations ever! It's hard to get stuff done when you're distracted every few minutes. So whenever you're working on your business or goals, make yourself completely unavailable. Set your phone to only receive calls/texts from your significant other during this time. All other notifications should be turned OFF. This way you're 100% into working when you're working. Designate a few time slots to catch up on messages, but when it's time to get back to work, unplug yourself from the phone! If you don't have a significant other or anyone that needs to contact you frequently, then turn the phone off completely while working. Don't be a slave to notifications. They'll still be there after you get work DONE. This will work wonders for your productivity!
Say No ALOT, A WHOLE LOT!
There's no shortage of people wanting you to do something. While it's great to help others the problem comes when you take on more than you can actually follow through with. When you over-obligate yourself, you end up being distracted from getting YOUR stuff done. Time is a valuable resource that we can't get back. So, make sure you don't get the short end of the stick by spreading yourself too thin! Many times, a NO is appropriate even if you don't feel too nice saying it. Stop worrying about being "nice" and fully evaluate what is attached to that YES before you give it. If you feel pressured by someone to give a yes, ALWAYS tell them "let me think about it and I'll get back with you later." That way you have time to really evaluate if you're able to do what they're asking and how it will affect you. Then, get back to them with an appropriate answer. Don't just give a yes under pressure to be "nice." There isn't anything nice about agreeing to something you can't or shouldn't do. If you're not careful, you can waste a lot of your precious time being tied up in things that have no lasting value for YOU.
Keep Your Circle Tight
When you're serious about accomplishing your goals, you have to be very careful of who you hang around. If you associate yourself with unmotivated people, you will eventually become unmotivated. There's nothing more distracting than being in a circle full of people who have no ambition. Your circle needs to be full of people who are as serious or MORE serious than you about getting goals accomplished. An effective circle should sharpen each other and push each other towards greatness. If you're doing ALL the sharpening and pushing, it's time to find a new crew. You can only go so far lugging around dead weight. Honestly, sometimes you may need to be alone for a season and there's nothing wrong with that!
Don't Tell Everyone Your Goals
When you're excited about your goals, it's very tempting to share them with everyone. The problem is everyone isn't going to be excited about you accomplishing your goals. Frankly, some people don't want you to succeed. The minute you start going hard for your goals, they'll go equally as hard at bringing every distraction possible your way. That may even apply to some of the closest people to. That family member that you've been close to since childhood may be unhappy with their own lives and seek to keep you unhappy with yours. So keep a lid on it! If you're gonna say anything, just give them a glimpse but not the whole picture. Sometimes it's best not to say anything at all. Work hard and let your success do the talking.
Clean Up Your Social Media Timeline
An easy way to deflate your motivation is by browsing through negative social media posts. While there are alot of positive people to follow (including myself @officialtjonez), there's a plethora of negative people posting all their problems on social media. Then you have the overly opinionated type who thrive on debating with others. Then you have those who are jealous of you and post subliminal (or not so subliminal) comments under your posts. Have you ever been caught up with these types lol? It's a drain and a waste of time. The more you feed into that stuff the more it will distract you from what you need to be doing. It's amazing how you'll randomly stumble upon a negative post about the EXACT goal you are trying to pursue. So I highly encourage you to go through your timeline and unfollow/delete anyone who isn't adding something valuable to your social media experience. If their posts or comments aren't encouraging you, motivating you, inspiring you, making you laugh, or anything else constructive, cut them off fast! One negative post or comment has a lasting effect on your whole day. It will stay in the back of your mind and influence your decisions. You get out what you put in so be very intentional about the type of content you allow yourself to consume via social media.
Bonus Tip: Focus on Accomplishing Just 5 Main Objectives Daily
Goals can contain a plethora of variables and it can be distracting trying to focus on too much at one time. So, I highly recommend breaking your goals down into just 5 main objectives that you can accomplish daily. This way everyday you are getting SOMETHING done. Personally I use the notes app on my iPhone and list my 5 objectives in a checkmark format. I'll schedule 2-3 days at a time and then check off each thing as I complete it. For instance, my 5 objectives for today were to take a rental car back, finish writing this blog post, finish one instrumental, shampoo the carpet in my studio, and catch up on emails. Of course I have more things to do, but these are the main 5 priorities that I have REQUIRED myself to get done today. I've taken the car back and now I'm finishing this blog post! 3 more things to go!
I hope this blog post has been helpful to you! Distractions have caused us all to miss out on opportunities to get things done at some point. But, that's the past and this is now! Forget about what did/could have happened and focus on what you're going to do now. Kill those distractions and grind like never before! Much success to you! -Tone