in Productivity

Do Better Work By Ignoring Everything and Everyone


This is a topic that has been covered extensively by much better writers than myself, but I figure I should write it down just so I can get the thoughts out of my own head.

There is too much going on to be an effective worker.

Information OverloadThese days there are simply far too many distractions in our lives.  E-mail, social media, and phones are the biggest culprits.  Combined, they probably interrupt us far more times than we’d like to count in a single day.

Why is this a problem?  Because our brain’s can’t really multitask.

Sure, we can do multiple things at once.  But that doesn’t mean that were doing either of them very well.  When it comes to performing a task strangely well, every single time we are interrupted we lose our place and our brain has to switch back to the task once the interruption stops.  It’s been said that frequent interruptions during work can lower your IQ by around 20 points.  When you doing important, high skill work, even a drop of 10 points would be enough to be a serious problem.

What’s the Solution?

You Need Quality Alone Time!There’s really only one way to solve this.  You must give yourself some uninterrupted time during the day where absolutely nothing will distract you.

  • No e-mail
  • No phone
  • No social media
  • No online chat
  • No chatting with coworkers, no browsing websites.

Nothing at all but the work.

It sounds like torture, and it is at the start.  As time goes by, you’ll find that you get FAR more done in FAR less time than before…and the work is better.

Don’t Become a Recluse

I’m not saying that you have to ignore everyone and everything all of the time.  No – only when you need to get things done.  After your productive time is over, you can do whatever you want.  Socialize with friends, go outside, exercise, watch TV, load up Facebook – whatever you want.

Tools for Ignoring Everything and Everyone

Here are some of the tools that I use to make this happen for myself:

I’ve tried and tested a lot of different methods for productivity, but this is my current stack.  It’s very simple and it is very effective.  Do what works for you, but I suggest at least trying this out.