Week 15 – How To Gain Mastery Over The Distractions In Your Life
Life will get in the way of our goals. So will distractions. Guaranteed. Distractions come from any number of areas in our lives such as unexpected events with children, link unplanned meetings and other priorities that are as important as your goals. Distractions also come from TV, social media and all sorts of other non-important things. Sometimes, we even let ourselves get distracted on purpose, when the going gets rough. During those times it’s easy to lose sight of the end goal which is to achieve your most meaningful goals. But it doesn’t mean your efforts towards reaching those goals have to grind to a halt. The key is to adjust your plan so you can focus on the right priorities. With a little more planning up front, you can adjust for the periods of your life when there are more things to do than there is time. For example, if you know that you will have to work extra hours at work over the next two weeks, you can adjust your activities to get what is most important done. This may mean that the only activities you focus on in these two weeks are the ones that involve your children’s school priorities and a few steps towards your goals. The other priorities can get shifted to when work calms down. We’re all jugglers of time and with a little bit more planning, we can keep focused on the right priorities without feeling overwhelmed or without giving up on our most important goals. Here are a few tips to stay on track.
- List all the priorities you have for work, family, your goals, etc. Rank them in two buckets – the first bucket is your urgent and important priorities, the second bucket is not urgent and/or not important. You may have to be ruthless in your decision about which bucket the activities goes in.
- Make a list of activities to set aside during busy periods such as watching your favourite show (tape it) or some chores that can wait. This will help you reduce the stress that comes from feeling overwhelmed and lighten your load.
- Take a few moments at the beginning of the week and add the urgent and important priorities into your planner. Avoid adding them all into one day. Spread them out throughout the week. At the beginning of each day, review your planner to see what needs to get done that day and focus on those activities. If there are any changes, make them.
- If your week is extremely busy, break down the actions from your goals into even smaller steps. Even if you only get 3-5 small steps done, you’ll still feel like you’ve made progress. You’re not going for quantity as much as consistent effort.
- At the end of the week, take a few moments to see what you were able to accomplish and appreciate your efforts. Take the activities that didn’t get done and move them into a time slot the following week.
When life gets too busy, focus on your priorities and get selfish with your time. That means saying no to things that are not priority, a challenge many face on a daily basis. Once the busy period passes, you can add less important activities into your week.
Dianne is a business and personal coach who helps individuals thrive as they successfully manage the dynamics of busy lives; and the author of a new book: If There Are No Limits… A guide to living with passion, purpose and possibilities. For more information, visit the her book page on this website.