014 Indistractable

014 Indistractable

0014 Indistractable
By Nir Eyal (300 Pages, 5 hrs 15 mins Audiobook) ⭐⭐⭐½

 

 

“How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life.”

 

  

Summary

Some days when you have to finish a task or project, it seems that the world is against you. You know you have to concentrate and complete your work, but after several hours have passed, you are almost where you started.

We live in a highly connected world, and our schedules are very tight, but every piece of technology that helps us in our work suddenly becomes a distraction. Our phone rings, the click of a clock, the sound of an incoming email or message, even the noise outside our window is a perfect excuse to drive us apart, and we find ourselves wandering and daydreaming. Looking at our computer screen, we click on a webpage after another.  

Perhaps we just don’t find the correct attitude to start our project and look for any excuse to procrastinate. Have you ever wonder why does this happen?

Nir Eyal, in his book “Indistractable,” goes deep into the reasons why we are distracted, and where do we get the need for distraction. A straightforward methodology to help us focus and some tools to stay away from distractions. These examples can be used at work, school, or home, and change our distraction habits into the Indistractable mindset.

 

Ten Lessons Learned

 

1.- Say What?

Daily in our life, we surround ourselves with variable distractions, and contrary to popular belief, many times, we just don’t realize we are shifting our attention. We blame our smartphones and other digital devices, but even if we place them away, we’ll find something to distract us.

 

2.- Why do We Get Distracted?

The origin comes from internal and external causes, like the buzz of our phone, a chime from a clock, our aching back, cold feet, or anything else that takes our attention. These situations are not what keeps us from doing what we’re supposed to do; they are just triggering that spring or click the traction or distraction. It means that our brains, like the brains of our ancestors, learned to seek some action to feeling pleasure or uncomfortable and then pull us towards or away our goals. 

 

3.- How to Tame our Triggers.

Like in the jungle, if we’re not aware of our surroundings. The triggers might haunt us, meaning that if we’re not aware of them, they can control our time and before we realize found ourselves doing something else, like answering emails, looking at Instagram, or play with our cat. So, the first thing we can do is take notice when they happen and have a little journal to write what triggers them (pain, the phone, a noise, or a popup window).

 

4.- Keep Your Triggers Locked.

Now that you know what made you distracted, then you can do something to fight them any time they jump. If it is a recurrent thought or something worrying you, acknowledge it and then place it aside. Another way to get rid of them is to find some activities that make your task more fun, or give yourself some reward or prize when you finish or a penalty for not doing them.

Be aware of you’re little voice in your head telling you: You are like this, and you’ll never change! When this happens, then mentally talk yourself into positively changing the message, like if you were talking to your friend.

 

5.- Timeboxing.

Almost two-thirds of Americans don’t keep a calendar, are you one of them? Having a daily plan does not assure you that you will end all your tasks, but it sure helps. 

The best way is to plan your day and divide it into small blocks of time of 30-60 minutes. Many authors recommend writing a list of the activities you have planned for the next day, and in the morning, schedule them into your timeboxes. This way, you’ll have a map of what you have planned for today. 

Some of the best ways to be more productive in these slots or timeboxes are to have resting times after each one, for example, 10 minutes resting after each 55 of work; or rest for five after 25 minutes working. But be sure to stand, stretch, and hydrate yourself. 

 

6.- Me, You, Them.

The author recommends that the firsts blocks are for you to take care of you and have all the stamina to do the rest; plan your exercise, meals, and your interest or hobbies. The next set is for relations; with your partner, schedule some time to have a date at least once a week, and time for a couple’s mini-vacation at least every quarter. Plan an hour or two to spend time with your kids to play or just to chill out and talk. Instead of the common practice, plan your work blocks at last. 

Divide your time at work also into priority slots, making sure that you set a couple of periods to work by yourself, to maximize your performance and productivity. Whenever possible, be sure to isolate yourself from distractions, a time to answer email, and a time for meetings, try to make the people in your office know your plan and help you stay focus.

 

7.- Office distractions.

Now it is common to have an open space office, which seems like a good idea to connect and promote creativity. But it is also full of distractions and waste time, creating costly errors, especially if your job requires to be highly concentrated. Think of a doctor in an operations room or a pilot landing a plane, have a sign or something that tells others that you have to focus all your attention on the task you’re doing. 

Avoid the emails, messages or WhatsApp, by separating them into different categories; the ones you have to answer the same day, and the ones you can go to during the week, and establish block time to attend them.

 

8.- Other Office Distractions.

Avoid endless meetings whenever you can. At Amazon, they have a policy stating that before anyone sets a meeting, they must inform the attendees of the agenda, and a briefing document, with the problem, the possible solution, and why they are invited.

Also, if your job requires you to be informed about new technologies, articles, or other matters, set a slot of time so you can be undistracted. Make sure to have your working place arranged.

Clear your computer screen of all the clutter, and rearrange your smartphone screen to have the Apps you need at first and the rest on other screens. It will help you to avoid the temptation to open Facebook, Snapchat, WhatsApp, and other social media you don’t need for work.

 

9.- The Road to Freedom.

Find ways to help you commit to your goals, like “Self-control” that blocks Apps in your cell for a preset time to help you stay on track; also “Focusmate,” that enables you to connect with study buddies, search the Appstore or Google Play Store to find other applications to help you. 

Talk to friends and commit to paying a fee if you don’t finish some tasks. This way, they will be on the look, and you’ll be motivated to not paying the penalty. And last use Identity pacts, that is a recommitment to a self-image. Start identifying your self like Indistractible, and modify your behaviors. Adopt rituals like Repeating mantras or other routines to help you stay away from distractions. 

 

10.- Teach others.

To help your kids to become Indistractable, stop deflecting the blame, take control, and help them balance the time they spend on technology. 

Set slots of time together for them to use their devices, help them identify their triggers, and have the autonomy, competence, and relatedness. 

Learn to postpone distraction for 10 minutes; instead of jumping right into it, don’t let yourself be distracted, staying on task, and the road to success.

This summary is intended for educational purposes, not as an alternative to the book.

If you are interested in a copy for yourself, click http://bit.ly/My100BoksProject005  👈

 

If you want to know more about the author, go to https://www.nirandfar.com/

 

 

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