The topic of this week’s #lrnchat session was “FOCUS”.
I always find looking at the questions that are used to loosely guide the chat as a nice way to see the overall theme of the chat. Here are the discussion questions that were presented to the group:
Q1) How do we deal with pressures that distract us from the thing we’re supposed to do?Q2) When is the right time for a guilty pleasure? When does the guilty pleasure become too much of a good thing?
Key Learning Points
In today’s fast-moving world, multi-tasking is constant. Most people do not have the luxury of working or thinking about a single task or topic exclusively for any length of time. Usually, we are revewing e-mail, conducting phone calls, sending text messages, and having lunch, all of which are peripheral things we do while working on the primary task at hand.
- Dedicate (and publicize) time on your calendar where you should not be distracted. The publicize part is critical – it only works if people are aware of it.
- Complete the task in an environment away from the source of distractions. For some, that me be working from home or at a different office. For me – it’s Starbucks, the ultimate white-noise.
- If you’re like me, and suffer from SOS (Shiny-Object-Syndrome), eliminate the sources of shiny-object distraction, whatever they may be. As an example, if I need to focus more, I turn off the notification pop-up on TweetDeck, which appear every time a tweet appears in one of my search columns.
- SIDE NOTE: (Your visual for this point should have me standing on a soapbox…) I could have mentioned the Outlook e-mail pop-up, as it was once my biggest SOS source. That is it was, until I came to the realization that I could turn it off… and leave it off. If you haven’t done this already, I highly recommend it as a productivity booster. If the issue is important and requires your immediate attention, your phone should ring.
When it comes to FOCUS, I think the greatest factor – and most common theme during this discussion – is Self-Awareness. If you have not taken the time to ensure you know what your priorities truly are, then you are left to react when circumstances throw your balance completely off. That’s where focused discipline comes in.