If you are a business owner, you will know all too well how easily it is for a small distraction to have a negative effect on a whole days work.
The trouble is, distraction is all around us. In this modern day world, literally everything seems to designed to distract us from the task at hand.
Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE technology. In fact, I would not be in the position I am in today if the world had not embraced the internet, and the fact is, technology does us a lot of good.
Business, Medical Care, Transport are all things that have hugely moved forward through the development of technology.
However, one thing that does cause a problem with technological advances is the fact that we are always ‘plugged in’.
Ask yourself, how many times per day do you check your Facebook?
How many times per day do you check your email?
And unfortunately, as entrepreneurs, we can be even worse, because we are constantly checking our sales figures as well as our social media!
There does not seem to be a place now, where we are simply ‘unavailable’, and while in one sense this is a wonderful thing, in another sense, it’s really scary!
This is why I wanted to write a post today about the topic of distraction.
My Tips for Combating Distraction
Set Yourself Working Hours
Decide on a schedule and stick to it.
If you only have two hours per day to work on your business, that’s fine, but make sure you dedicate that time entirely to your work.
This has multiple benefits. For a start, you will get more done if you dedicate set time, secondly, the people who treat their businesses like a job, tend to experience more success.
It’s very easy for entrepreneurs to think ‘I’ll do that later’ as they have no boss breathing down their neck. So it’s very important that you get into the habit of set working hours that you dedicate to the task at hand, just as you would a job.
Turn off the TV!
This is one I am guilty of!
I quite often would work with the TV playing in the background. I used to kid myself that it helped me, however, the truth was it was an unnecessary distraction.
Much of the time I would find myself having to go back and repeat the work, which is not at all productive. It meant jobs were taking twice as long.
Now don’t get me wrong, I love movies, and I religiously watch Coronation Street. I am not saying all TV is wrong. There is just a time and place for it, which is not during working hours!
Thank You For the Music!
Music is an interesting distraction.
For me, that is exactly what it is, a distraction. The reason for this is that I cannot help but sing along!
However, I know plenty of people who put tunes on while they work and they feel it helps.
My advice would be to try and pick music that has no lyrics, and is just the tracks not the radio, as you may find yourself listening in to the latest song lyrics or the conversations taking place on your favourite radio show.
Friends and Family
Now we all need time with our friends and family, and that’s great. It makes you feel good and it makes life more enjoyable.
However, sometimes, even your loved ones can be a distraction. (Don’t worry they don’t mean to be!)
Sometimes, you just need to be disciplined enough to say no. So for example, if someone asks you out for lunch, but it’s during your working hours, ask them if they can do an early evening instead.
Sometimes our friends and family don’t understand how hard we work as entrepreneurs. They see us working from our home office or working the hours we choose and think we have the ideal lifestyle. What they don’t always comprehend is the hours of grind we have put in to get where we are, and continue to put in every day!
Now, you shouldn’t judge your family for this, if you’re not in the same position then why would you get it. However, sometimes, we need to try and explain to them why we are doing what we do, and how hard we have to work to maintain our business.
Technology isn’t always a Good Thing!
Technology is both the greatest and worst thing to ever happen to us!
We have become lazy as we can now order anything on our smart phone and we have become switched off from the world, because the world is now on Facebook!
Technology is also the biggest distraction we face today!
Whenever you see that little red notification of a new email or message on Facebook, you simply have to check!
I found this was setting me in a pattern for the day of constantly checking Facebook, as if I had commented something on a morning, I wanted to see replies to it, and so I would keep logging onto it, and because it is so easy to do on a phone, it’s something we have almost become subconsciously wired up to do!
To combat this problem, I actually moved the social media and mail icons from my home screen to one of the screens I have to swipe to visit. That way I can’t see the little red numbers beckoning me to leave my work and look!
I hope that this has been helpful it combating distraction in your work.
Don’t forget to comment if you have any questions and you can follow me on social media on the links below!