Wednesday, January 5, 2011

On Distractions

I have a lot of trouble staying focused, largely due to the fact that I work on a nice computer with full Internet access in a very laid-back work environment. However, my lack of productivity is a constant source of frustration and stress, so I've been working on turning myself into a more focused, productive worker.

I made three major changes in my work life that have made a massive difference. First of all, I cut my coffee habit cold turkey. Like, completely. It was less rough than I expected, especially since I'm still allowing myself to have a cup in the morning (before work, none during), and every once in a while I'll sneak a coke during lunch (I also drink tea all day). I noticed immediately, however, that I was far less irritable and distract-able. Besides that, I've freed myself from the caffeine roller-coaster that often resulted in frustration and many hours wasted.

Next, I started keeping a Google Docs TODO list, that I keep open on my browser at all times. It doesn't necessarily keep me focused exactly, but it does allow me to get back on track when I do get distracted. The other benefit of the TODO list is that if I think of something I need to do that's not directly related to work, I add it to the list, rather than breaking my concentration and starting a massive Internet-tangent on a whim.

The last step was to start running during lunch, which gives me the perfect chance to clear my head and come back to work refreshed and focused. Not much else to say about this other than that it works.

Also, I'm only about 1/4 of the way through book 2, but I'm making great progress on it. Hope to have another "COMPLETED" update sooner rather than later!

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