Thursday, June 24, 2010
Tips to Stay Focused
This is mainly how I get things done that matter to me. This is how I write and publish books and blogs, make a living writing and translating, practice sports and raise my kids, plus spend time with my friends and loved ones or keep in touch with those who are far away.
Still, sometimes I feel I don´t have time enough to do it all and do it all well. I´m teaching myself to prioritize and streamline my life even further, so that I´m not swallowed by the constant barrage of distractions of modern life.
Following are just a few tips I use to keep my focus and get the important things done, while not forgetting to enjoy downtime too.
- Turn off my phone when I´m working, or simply don´t answer it unless it´s an emergency call concerning my daughters! Small but constant interruptions add up and make it more difficult to concentrate.
- Set time aside on my planner to work on the different projects I´m handling. I´m my own boss, and a good boss sets expectations for his or her employees, right? I also block time to spend with my kids and friends.
- Turn down too many social invites when I realize that short-term satisfaction will undermine the long-term satisfaction of getting my book written or meeting a deadline with a client (and getting my paycheck!)
- Be protective of my “alone” time. I consider walking or running on the beach just as important for me as eating or drinking water. It´s non-negotiable.
- Be protective of my energy and steer clear of energy drainers: people or situations that suck it out of me. If inevitable, then I do something to replenish it asap!
- Keep a vision-book in which, amongst other things, I write down my achievements on a daily and weekly basis. I´m not anal about it (I´m anal about few things if any), and it helps me stay focused on the positive.
- Block time to pay bills, get an oil change, doctor´s appointments, etc. on the same day. That frees my other days up to do my work.
- Make sure I have time to enjoy my friends, dancing, laughing or being silly with my kids or hanging out with that special someone. Life is too serious as it is!
How do you stay focused?