After an eight hour workday, you’re exhausted. You go home and you can barely muster the energy it takes to heat up some Tyson chicken nuggets in a that filthy microwave. You know this feeling. Oh, your microwave might be spotless, but the fatigue — it is all too familiar.
To top this, you got absolutely nothing useful done at work center. You feel guilty for delaying your pet project or some long term assignment. These tasks will be delayed leaving you scurrying at the deadline like a roach after the light has been turned on in an old abandoned house.
What has happened? You have been inundated. You are being constantly tasked. For some reason, the IT department has decided to install software on your computer designed to constantly distract you.
I learned early in sports that to be effective — for a player to play the best he can play — is a matter of concentration and being unaware of distractions, positive or negative.
— Tom Landry
Imagine that you are a boxer. Your job is to take down your opponent. In order to do that, you must attack, block, and dodge — an exercise of concentration on one task. Now, what would happen if during your match, your kid entered the ring and asked for dinner. Maybe it’s not your kid. Maybe it’s a colleague asking you to sign a form. The easiest way to dispatch them is to address their needs promptly, but it puts you in a horrible position.
At work, you’re a fighter. You need to punch your opponent in the mouth, but you are receiving friendly-fire. You need to stand up and eliminate the distraction.
Close Outlook and Be More Productive
I have yet to see anyone be rewarded for a quick response to an email. It’s small-time to do as such. Do you think executives answer inquiries within five minutes? No. They usually have a lot in the queue. Also, quickly responding degrades quality. If you wait to look at the email, you’ll be less inclined to rush in your response.
“You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks.”
― Winston S. Churchill
Only check your email twice a day.
- Two hours into your day.
- Six hours into your day.
It’s okay. Nobody will hate you.
Distractions leave you feeling depleted. It’s time for you to starve the distraction kittens and feed the focus tigers. Become a better you, become more mindful, and release your best work into the world.