When we first started Hudson Rickman I used to get really up tight over distractions.
You know the sort of thing?
- Neighbours dropping in for a quick coffee which lasted an hour.
- Sudden unexpected shopping trips because we have run out of things
- Phone calls which go on and on when all you want to do is to get on.
- Home type tasks which you have agreed to do and they take much longer than expected.
All of these are major distractions.
But what about the smaller ones.
- Clutter on your desk at home which distracts you up to 10 times in a day.
- The unexpected TV program that you must just watch
- The washing machine breaks down and you have to sort it.
- The dog falls sick and has to go to the Vets
These are just a few of the distractions we all face when we work at our home based business – I am sure you can come up with many more.
So how did I learn to stop worrying and love distractions? (with apologies to Peter Sellers).
I guess it was a necessity. I found as I am sure many of us do that distractions were becoming an irritant and I was allowing it to stress me out. This grew until I sat down one day and took stock of what was happening. I then set about trying to resolve the problem, and after a few milliseconds realised a home truth.
There is no solution to this problem in term of stopping it – you have to learn to live with it (and love it if you can).
When I look back on my long corporate career I know for a fact that I learned to live with exactly this situation in that world. The boss would phone and ask me to go see him immediately. A crisis would occur and I would be designated to get it fixed. My dog could also get sick and need the vets. Even my beloved Granddaughter was in an accident and as Mum & Dad were not in the country I had to go and sort it – fortunately she was okay.
So If I could do it in my corporate career why not in my home business environment?
The realisation was that I should expect to have distractions every day – period. So then the issue was how to incorporate them into my daily routine so that I still managed to get done what I set out to do. By the way this does not mean that the daily schedule suffered to incorporate the distractions – no I had to find way to do both.
So I lengthened the working day a little and this allowed me to have those distractions and get done what I needed to do. I got so used to it in the end that the working day got close back to what it was originally.
The other points I would make are:
- We all say that we should take breaks every so often to avoid stress. What if those distractions replace the breaks we need – same time element so why not.
- If you learn to love those distractions then the stress levels caused by them will drastically reduce – that can only be a good thing – right?
- What I am doing is mentally adding up the time as I go through the day and incorporating the distractions as well. As long as the work gets done and my day doesn’t become overly long I am fine. The order in which things get done is not important – it’s just a case of getting it done.
- Finally you need to get to the stage where distractions don’t have that label anymore – they are just part of the day routine – so no stress and you still get your work done – great right?
Hope this helps. It was only when I was writing this that I realised what has really happened to me. I have learned to stop worrying and learnt to love distractions, and still get my work done. What more could I want?
Yours in business
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