Nothing is more frustrating for a blogger than to be held captive by distractions. Unfortunately, the nature of the industry and the flexibility that comes with working remotely is often highly conducive to distractions. Figuring out how to deal with them can make a huge difference.
3 Ways to Beat Common Distractions
As humans, one of our innate weaknesses is our inability to focus on one single task for a long period of time. Evolutionarily speaking, things have gotten worse. You’ve probably heard the statistic that humans now have shorter attention spans than goldfish. Yikes!
The good news is that you’ve also been blessed with a brain that can make choices and implement strategies for self-improvement. If you want to kick productivity into high gear and become a more efficient blogger, you must develop a plan for beating the common distractions that plague you on a daily basis. Here are some suggestions:
1. Ditch Your Smartphone
Your smartphone is a magnet for distraction. As soon as you see it light up or hear it buzz, you’re immediately drawn to it. Sometimes you just pick up your phone to see if a notification has appeared, even if you don’t see or hear any signs of an incoming message.
As a blogger who depends on long, uninterrupted periods of focus, the smartphone can be a death sentence. So here’s a contrarian idea: get rid of it. Nobody is suggesting that you go off the grid, but you could certainly benefit from replacing your smartphone with a more traditional flip phone.
Flip phones – such as the new Samsung Rugby 4 – don’t pose nearly the same level of distraction that today’s iPhones and Androids do with apps, social media, and the like. By using a flip phone during the workday, you can avoid unnecessary distractions. Give it a try and see what you think.
2. Find a Private Place to Work
It may be trendy to bring your laptop to the local coffee shop and spend your day pecking away at your keyboard while a barista brings you a never ending supply of caramel lattes, but public spaces aren’t ideal places to work on a regular basis.
Coffee shops, malls, and even public libraries can be very distracting. They’re great for an occasional change of scenery, but you need a private place to work. Your house or apartment is a good start, but distractions can be present here, too. What you really require is a dedicated room in your home where you can shut the door and be alone.
3. Log Out of Your Email Account
Just like your smartphone, email can be a big distraction. Every time you see an email notification pop up on your desktop, you click it and see what’s going on. Without realizing it in the moment, you’re killing your train of thought.
In order to combat the constant ringing and dinging of your email inbox, go ahead and log out. Instead of being constantly logged in, schedule time in your daily planner to check and respond to email. This might be a 20-minute block in the morning and afternoon. Outside of these blocks, you stay logged out. As a result, you don’t have to deal with going back and forth from writing to checking emails (the vast majority of which aren’t time sensitive).
Don’t Let Distractions Rule Your Day
Distractions can derail you as a blogger – if you let them. Talk to the most successful bloggers in your industry and you’ll discover that they’re masters at time management. They know how to set themselves up for success and rarely fall victim to costly distractions. If you can learn how to do the same, success will become much more attainable.