Recent studies have found that the average person spends about half of their waking hours thinking about something other than what they are currently doing --and that mind-wandering often makes people unhappy. Equally important, the interruptions of modern life prevent you from doing your best work and weaken your ability to tackle the most challenging projects. Scientists call this "deep work," the work that is most closely linked to our purpose and ultimate success.

If you have a "busy mind," schedule "focus time" with zero distractions. Set your schedule so that as often as possible, you can focus entirely on the task at hand. If you have an afternoon meeting, answer emails in advance. If you have an important project to complete, move to a quiet space and turn off your phone. The more you can create distraction-free work time, the more you can cultivate your attention and achieve great success.

Remember: Perfection isn't necessary. If you do this 80 percent of the time, you'll reap the benefits. Tweak the process as you go; consider adding buffer zones between the blocks of time in your schedule to keep your head from spinning from too many back-to-back activities. Be realistic and ask, "Am I really being productive, or am I just busy?"


Published on: Oct 17, 2018