We live in a world filled with distractions and that can be especially challenging for entrepreneurs who have more roles to fill, more time demands, and fewer resources than they may have expected. And what are distractions? They are simply things that interrupt attention or pull us away from something that is more important to do. Distractions have likely been around since the beginning of time. As Christopher Columbus said, “By prevailing over all obstacles and distractions, one may unfailingly arrive at his chosen goal or objective.”
Why Successful Entrepreneurs Limit Distractions
The fact is that the most productive people get things done one at a time and those who focus clearly on results and avoid distractions achieve success. Distractions can be caused by noise, the omnipresence of smartphones, personal and email interruptions, clutter, hunger, anxiety, short attention span, and the temptation to multitask.
All these interruptions cause entrepreneurs to erode their ability to focus, may lead to poor judgment, or factual mistakes, all leading to poor performance. Distractions can negatively affect one’s mood. They can steal time and make efforts less efficient as well as less effective, creating stress in their wake. They can interfere with properly listening and communicating with others. In short, distractions can be productivity killers for entrepreneurs.
How to Overcome Distractions
Use these tips for entrepreneurs to overcome distractions:
- Set goals and break them into actionable steps to help stay away from distractions.
- Establish deadlines and time limits of all deliverables to keep you focused.
- Make to-do lists.
- Start with the most important tasks first.
- Manage email interruptions by limiting reading and reaction times.
- Manage social media interruptions by limiting and calendaring reading and reaction times.
- Adopt the healthy habits of drinking plenty of water and taking breaks.
- Avoid multi-tasking.
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