This page is the only one open on my computer screen. Internet is off. My cell is on silent on the other side of the room. All of my attention is on creating something useful for you.
Focus requires discipline. As the famed personal finance guru Robert Kiyosaki defines it: Follow One Course Until Successful.
In a keynote speech about the Third Metric, Arianna Huffington discusses the dangers of multitasking: "you think you're being efficient, but actually you're being stupid." As Arianna points out, we now have scientific evidence proving we cannot multi-task.
What you're really doing when you think you're multitasking is shifting your attention from one thing to another at an astonishing pace. While it's fascinating we have this capability, it's not exactly the best use of our mental faculties. When, instead, we Follow One Course Until Successful, we actually accomplish more, better and feel less stressed.
Take email, for example. As Brendon Burchard defines it, our inbox is simply "a nice organizing mechanism for other people's priorities." Yet, this is what most of us start our day with -- other folks' priorities. Personally, I only check my email after I have completed my own priorities. This practice alone will significantly improve the quality of your work and your life.
So here's our challenge to you: FOCUS -- Follow One Course Until Successful
Today, right now, or as soon as you can, eliminate all distractions for the time it takes you to complete one of your priorities. Select something small to start out. Next, put a "focus session" note on your door, turn off the wifi, unplug the ethernet, silence cell notifications and schedule FOCUS time in your calendar so others will not disturb you. Worried about missing something on email? Set an auto-reply telling folks that you're not available from (time it takes to complete your task) and to call if it's urgent. Or just say you're in a meeting, which you are: a meeting with yourself.
Maybe a pedicure is your priority today. That's OK, too. You also need to focus when taking care of yourself. Eliminate distractions even when resting. Really relax and be present at that pedicure. No texting, email checking, business calls.
When you rest, you rest. When you go, you go. - Arno Ilgner
Leave a comment below letting us know how you eliminate distractions and set yourself up for FOCUS. What neat tricks or tools do you use to help yourself?
Edited by Suzanne Pinckney
Follow Cortney McDermott on Twitter: www.twitter.com/CortMcDermott