When you only have a few hours a day, you need to be focused to get things done. But we know that’s easier said than done! In this episode, I share with you 5 simple strategies you can implement immediately to get rid of the distractions and help you be super focused!
Hello lovely, it’s Yasmin from Tiny Time Big Results.
Today we’re gonna be talking about how you can stop getting distracted and stay focused so that you can achieve your goals.
When you have a Tiny Time business, and you are trying to run a profitable business in 20 hours a week or less, one of the principles of making that work is around your productivity. But getting distracted is a huge obstacle So in this video, I want to share with you some really simple ways that you can actually get rid of the distractions and actually stay focused.
I recently published my first book, Tiny Time, Big Results, (you can get it here on Amazon now!) and I was chatting to a few people, and been doing different podcast interviews, and one of the questions that keeps coming up is how did you write the book, publish it, and market it in your Tiny Time? You’ve got three young children, how did you do that? And the one thing I’m really keen to emphasise all the time is that I’m not some kind of anomaly. I’m just like you. I have the same pressures. I have the same things that are going through my head because I think, “ooh, what’s that all about?” Shiny object syndrome, cat videos, you know I am very easy to distract. Super easy to distract, okay?
So it’s not like I have some kind of tunnel vision and I am always focused. That’s not true. And so I wanted to shoot this video because I really want to emphasise that this isn’t about having this innate ability to be focused. That’s not what this is about. This is about how you can stop the distractions, and stay focused even when you have got a mind like mine. A thought will come into my head, and I’ll want to Google that immediately. And it takes a lot of restraint to stop doing that.
And so in this video, I’m gonna share with you some really simple strategies that’ll help you to stay focused and put an end to those distractions as much as you possibly can!
The key thing here is focus. And productivity, for productivity’s sake, is useless. I’m keen to emphasise that you want to be productive doing the right things. So we’re going to assume for the purpose of this video that you are already doing, or focusing on the right things. The things that are gonna move the needle in your business, the marketing, the sales conversations, working with your clients, creating new content. We’re going to assume just for this video that you’re good in all of those things, or if you’re not, but just for this video.
Because what I want to do is work from that basis. So when you sit down you know what you need to focus on. But there are things that come into your world, into your periphery, and you want to stop them, and you want to create a little bubble around yourself so that you can get the work done.
So if you need to sit down and spend half an hour writing that blog post, or film that video, or create that new module for your online programme, then it’s really important that you actually do use that time effectively. Because it’s not about working hard, it’s about working smart.
Here are some really quick tips that you can use to help you to stay focused
1) Turn off your social media feed
So first of all, this one thing has actually made a huge difference in my life, I’ll give you a little caveat in a moment though. Turn off your social media feeds! Because that is the number one distraction, There’s always things popping up. Ooh, what are people talking about now? What’s on Twitter, what’s on Facebook?
I applied a Chrome extension on my laptop, and it’s called the Newsfeed Eradicator. So when you go into Facebook you can still check your notifications but you can’t actually see what’s in the newsfeed. Sometimes I go onto my phone to have a look at the newsfeed but that’s just me, so I’m just showing you that, you know, I’m not immune to this, but when I’m on the laptop and I’m working it stops me from scrolling. I’m sure there are probably other relevant ones for the other social media channels. Just take them off, you know, don’t look at them, that’s all you have to do.
2) Stop multitasking
The second thing I want you to do is to stop multitasking. Stop trying to do like two or three things in one go, okay? We’ve bought into this myth, especially as women, that we can multitask. Yes, we can multitask if we are doing a task that doesn’t require any brain power like having a cup of coffee or ironing and when you are doing something that is actually more value-add, you can multitask those two things.
However, if you are trying to multitask like, listening to a training, a recording, or this video, and you’re trying to do other things then it’s really hard for your brain to know what it’s going to focus on. So if it’s things that you don’t really have to think too much about, that’s fine, but when you are trying to get things done and you’re trying to create really valuable work and content, then be single task focused, okay?
3) Put your phone on airplane mode
Put your phone on airplane mode when you are working. I typically work between nine and 12 every day because the kids are at school and creche. This is one of the things I will do because my phone has this annoying vibration even if I turn the sound off, to let me know that a new email’s come in or something. And if you’re part of loads of WhatsApp groups you know how distracting that can be. So put your phone in airplane mode. That means that nothing can come in. And just for the time that you need to really focus.
4) Turn off your email
And turn off your emails. I read somewhere that checking emails constantly actually makes us more stupid. Set yourself specific times to check your emails, and stick to that as much as possible. Again this is something that I struggle with but it’s something that I know that when I have applied it, it works beautifully, and it stops me from feeling like some kind of addict, constantly looking at my phone. It’s not good, and I really don’t want that, and I don’t want my kids to see that either and unfortunately they have seen me do that too often, and so it’s really important that we’re modelling behaviour that we want to see from them as well.
5) Use a timer
The final strategy is to use a timer. This is utilising the law, Parkinson’s Law, which is something I mention in the book, and it’s about how work expands to fill the time allocated to it. So if you say to yourself, I’ve got an hour and I’m gonna write this blog post, you’ll take the hour, but if you said I’ve got thirty minutes to write this blog post you actually take thirty minutes. So using a timer is actually a really effective way of managing and enhancing your productivity.
If you sit down and say, okay, I want to create this module, I’m going to create the slides for it in the next half an hour, and you set a timer, and when it beeps, you say “great, happy days!”. I’ve actually achieved so much more in that time than you could have or you would have thought possible. Set the timer, and say, okay I want to work solidly for 35 minutes, then I’m going to take a 10-minute break, then do another 35 minutes. Honestly, the stuff that you’re gonna be able to achieve in those ‘supposedly’ tiny pockets of time will blow you away.
That’s it for me for today. Let me know how you get on. Please share your thoughts, your comments, your success stories, or the stories about how you get distracted very easily with cat videos as well. I’d love to hear from you, and if you think that this video would benefit somebody else, then please share it. And if you haven’t subscribed to my YouTube channel please do so.
Alright lovely, take care, and I will see you next time.
Love and hugs,