Dealing with Distractions

distractions focus productivity Nov 22, 2022

It's easy to become distracted. But unfortunately, distractions are all around us. They can come in the form of people, things, or events. Sometimes, they are hard to avoid. Other times, we willingly allow ourselves to be distracted. But, no matter how it happens, distractions can prevent us from reaching our goals and completing what we set out to do. This blog post will discuss some tips for dealing with distractions so that you can stay focused and productive.

Overcome distractions to get things done

Distractions can divert our attention to them instead of doing what we must do, such as finishing our daily work and responsibilities. They can be in the form of objects like cell phones or TVs, the people we like to chat with, or events like eating or sleeping at unnecessary times. Some distractions may not be so obvious, such as constant worrying about the future or past, and can still distract us despite their intangible nature and primarily residing in our minds. Whatever form a distraction takes, its purpose remains the same: to move you away from what you must do and thus affect your productivity.

Distractions are not inherently wrong by themselves. Instead, they are activities and things that can give us fun and fulfillment, provided we do them at the right time and not when we are doing more important tasks. Unfortunately, they become a detriment when we insert them during our daily schedule when it's not time to do them. As a result, we waste time and may end up rushing through things we are supposed to finish earlier. It can eventually affect all our later tasks and may cause us to miss deadlines and lose opportunities when we get delayed. When such things happen, we give ourselves more reasons to get stressed and incur headaches.

Considering the adverse effects that so many distractions can bring, we must learn how to deal with such things, so we can finish what needs to be done and make good use of our time to do other things. However, there are some things that we can do to help us manage distractions and not let them eat our time and affect our productivity.

1. Take them away or make access difficult

If what's distracting you are objects like cell phones, you can do something to avoid getting distracted by them. For example, in the case of cell phones, you can turn off notifications, put them in silent mode, and place them somewhere that requires some effort to reach, making it bothersome to get them whenever you feel like it. The main idea with physical distractions is to make it less convenient for you to come and use them, thereby lessening the instances of getting distracted. If it's a person who can distract you, tell them not to disturb you during specific times, so you can be in the zone and focus on your work.

We also mentioned above that some distractions are not so obvious, such as problems that keep our minds occupied over something, preventing us from focusing. If such things distract you, try to resolve whatever issues or concerns you may have, so they won't creep into your mind while doing something important like work.

2. Build discipline and self-control

Distractions happen because we allow them to, and by themselves, things that can distract us won't suddenly beg for our attention and come to us. It is we who will enable them to become a distraction. Since the urge comes internally to distract ourselves, what can help us combat it is to develop discipline and self-control. It may not be easy to build these right away into your character, but once you do, you can control yourself from getting distracted even if the temptations are right there beside you.

3. Lighten or lessen your workload

We might get distracted because our workload may be too heavy, and many things are on our to-do lists. We can eliminate distractions by focusing on only the most essential tasks on our schedule and leaving those with later deadlines to be finished later. See if you can lessen some jobs, especially those that may not matter much to your goals. The problem with taking on a heavy task or doing too many things simultaneously is that we may get overwhelmed and tired, and when these set in, we can have the urge to distract ourselves so that we can maintain focus on what we are doing. Limit yourself to what is within your capabilities, so you can focus more and keep distracting thoughts away.

4. Set time for breaks and leisure

When we start to engage in distractions, it can signify that we are already tired. Therefore, giving yourself time to rest and do something for leisure can help you renew your energy and maintain focus once you get back to work. You can accomplish more by giving yourself a break because you need to keep your momentum and motivation steady, and breaks help you achieve these. You prevent yourself from getting too tired. Without breaks, distractions take form, and you may give more attention and time to these instead of doing what's essential.

5. Challenge yourself

Boredom is another reason why someone engages more in distractions. Maybe you feel like your task is too easy, or it seems too automatic so that you can give away your attention to something else, like distractions. Perhaps taking on more challenging projects will help if such is the case. When faced with challenging tasks, our minds need to focus more, and we must use our skills and knowledge to accomplish them. We focus more on what we have to do, and there is no room for distractions; otherwise, we may fail at our most challenging tasks.

6. Keep yourself healthy

Sleep deprivation can affect our concentration when working, which can lead to diverting our attention to distractions. We may also need to distract ourselves to stay awake because we may feel too sleepy due to a lack of sleeping hours the previous day. So we must get good quality sleep every day as much as possible, so we won't feel drowsy and keep our attention on what we are doing. It is also an excellent idea to keep ourselves healthy all the time because if something aches while we are working on something, that will become a distraction that can prevent us from finishing what we must do.

Eliminate distractions as much as you can

Distractions are everywhere. It's up to us to decide whether we will like to be distracted or focus on what's more essential. There is a right time to engage in pleasantries and leisure, and it's not while doing work and other important responsibilities that we have. We can do them after we finish our daily work and responsibilities; by that time, the things that distract us can no longer be considered distractions. They are now things that can make us feel happy and fulfilled. We must control ourselves to do them when free and not when we have to finish something first.

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