Manage Distractions


In a Nucleus Research study, 77% of employees check social media at work. While many people sit at their desks feigning productivity, staying focused so you can engage in the deep focus that will be required to be successful in a remote environment takes know-how.


Staying focused in a world full of distractions can be difficult, learning to do so on your own without the benefit of inquiring eyes can be particularly tricky. Our brains crave distraction. In fact, when we engage with something novel we’re actually rewarded with a hit of dopamine. It’s easy for our focus to get fragmented into a thousand little must-dos. Distractions don’t just eat up our time, they can also diminish our sense of meaning in life. As our focus becomes more and more divided, it’s difficult to articulate at the end of the day what we used all our time for.

We have to take steps to ensure that we’re creating safe spaces for our productivity. What does that mean? How would that look?

Turn your phone off, I actually mean off not just on silent. If that’s not feasible then turn in on silent and face down. I have my Mac set up, so I can get important text messages through my laptop, freeing me to keep my cell phone off entirely. Phones are wonderful sources of information but they are our greatest source of distraction. The constant blooping and blonging evaporate our productivity faster than almost anything else. To set yourself up for success, remove that distraction from the equation altogether or substantially minimize it.

Use a DO NOT DISTURB sign – communicate with those in your working environment that you’re in work mode and shouldn’t be disturbed for anything that isn’t an emergency. You can also put this on your calendar and direct messaging app so people in your org know it’s not a good time. 

Website Blocking- If you’re struggling with the self-discipline needed to ensure you don’t end up with countless open tabs and hours of lost time, it’s time to call in help. Thankfully, you’re not alone. Productivity apps abound. These are great tools to help put necessary restrictions in place to keep you from heading down the rabbit hole. If you know you need these kinds of tools and don’t get them, you’ll only have yourself to blame when deadlines come calling. It’s not our faults that will destroy us, it’s failure to admit and change them that does us in.