Tea Tuesday: How To Deal With Distractions
the office life
I’m writing this post to you from my beautiful home office, after I’ve finished my morning routine, which consists of yoga, meditation and journaling.
Having a morning routine is so absolutely crucial in starting your day off on the right foot and with a full cup, so you’re better able to handle situations that get thrown at you and better able to navigate any distractions that might come up - trying to deter you from achieving your goals.
It’s funny, I always thought the “office life” wasn’t for me because I was so unfulfilled at my 9-5 job. But now, I’m technically sitting in an office. The difference is that I’m doing what I LOVE and I wanted to make it a place that I would love being in, love working in, enjoy spending time in, and able to get really focused and accomplish everything I set out to accomplish. I could legitimately spend hours in here, and I do sometimes haha.
A friend told me the other day that I should go into interior decorating because my office was “Pinterest-worthy but not too Pinterest-y” and I thought that was just the best.
Today, I want us to work through dealing with distractions because we literally live in a society, in an environment where we’re constantly being targeted and stimulated and pulled in every which direction.
When I asked my followers on Instagram what they struggled with the most when it came to trying to achieve their goals, staying organized or managing their time to get work done, the answer was overwhelmingly and consistently distractions.
So I wanted to do a post about whats worked for me and whats worked for some of my clients because figuring out how to deal with distractions has helped me:
a) feel way more calm and not like I’m running around like a chicken with my head cut off
b) to deepen and strengthen my relationship with myself and with other people. Particularly, Matthew, my partner. And of course, my friends.
and C) has given me the opportunity ta’ get 👏🏼 shit 👏🏼 done 👏🏼
Like starting a podcast and ranking Top 25
Like leaving my 9-5 job and starting a successful online business.
Like having my hands in multiple little pots and contributing to my community, without all the overwhelm that usually comes from feeling like I’ve spread myself too thin.
How to DEAL WITH DISTRACTIONS…
1. Create Before You Consume
A lot of us, the first thing we do in the morning is check our phones. And I get it, it’s right there, it’s easy. You probably use your phone as an alarm clock. So of course it’s the first thing you touch, and then social media is just another tap away.
15 minutes later, you’re rushing around because now you’re late for work.
First thing when dealing with distractions is dealing with the Kiiiiiing of all distractions - ya cell phone.
I personally don’t sleep with my phone in my room anymore. It stays right here in my office charging and on airplane mode, until AFTER I’ve “created” ie. done my morning routine and gotten a work-task accomplished.
And you might be asking, Well how do you wake up in the morning then, Carolina? Well my good friend, I have the privilege of waking up when my body is done sleeping - so I don’t actually use an alarm clock anymore.
BUT - that doesn’t mean you can’t go to the dollar store and buy a small alarm clock to replace your phones alarm clock.
Saying that, is you trying to justify and make an excuse to not make these temporarily uncomfortable changes in your life, that are ultimately going to benefit you tenfold.
And your unwillingness to be temporarily uncomfortable is why distractions keep getting you.
Because when it comes to dealing with distractions, it really boils down with dealing with the temporary feeling of discomfort. Being pulled in one direction (the distraction) but making the uncomfortably choice to stick to what you’re currently doing instead.
So in the morning, instead of doing the regular consumption on your phone, do something of substance for yourself - that’s the importance of having a morning routine.
Clearing your mind and filling your cup with peace and intention, connecting with yourself, or connecting and creating a bonding memory between another human or your pet.
2. Set Yourself Up To Win
The absolute best way to deal with distractions is to try and predict them, and set yourself up to win in avoiding them.
Continuing on with your phone. Notifications? Turn. Them. Off.
You don’t need to know every single time someone likes an article you shared on Facebook, or a photo you shared on Instagram or when someone DMs you.
It’s unnecessary, constantly keeps you checked into your phone and keeps your ramped up waiting for that attention to come in. When you keep side-eyeing your phone waiting for that gratification, you can’t possibly immerse yourself in whatever task you have at hand, because a part of your focus, a part of your attention is somewhere else.
Turn them off. They’ll still be there an hour from now - I promise you.
We literally live in a world of distractions - pings, dings, pokes, buzzes, ads - I can’t even watch a 3 minute comedy skit on FB anymore without being interrupted and distracted by an ad - turn the pings and the dings off. You don’t need them.
But what if you miss something really important?
I can pretty much guarantee that almost anything can wait at least an hour, if not a few. You can check your phone for 5 minutes every wake-able hour and only be on your phone for an average of an hour and a half. Before I did this, I was spending 4-5 hours on my phone EVERY SINGLE DAY.
That’s more than a part-time job!
Do you know what you could accomplish in a month with an extra 4-5 hours every single day?!
But again, worrying about missing something important is an excuse and a justification you’re telling yourself to not make difficult and uncomfortable changes that are ultimately going to better your life.
And if it really can’t wait an hour… they should be calling you. We shouldn’t be texting or emailing emergencies. I think that’s something we can all agree on.
3. Understand Procrastination
The first thing you need to realize is that all procrastination is - is fear of taking action.
It’s a form of self-sabotage. “If I don’t do this right now” or “If I do this instead” then I won’t have to do that thing that kind of scares me a little, makes me uncomfortable, intimidates me, I don’t know how to do etc....
That’s essentially the logic of procrastination.
So when you avoid your to-do list to do the dishes instead… it’s just fear, and it’s just excuses. Because maybe you don’t know the result of something, or you don’t know how something is going to turn out. When you watch Netflix to put something off, that’s a fear of taking action. We procrastinate things that will be beneficial to us because of discomforts and fears.
We have unfortunately, as a society, become more comfortable being miserable and complaining about things, than we are taking effective change and improving our lives and taking action that will better our situations.
We have so much more time during the day than we actually think we do, but we waste so much of it: on our phones, putting things off, and doing other things that we didn’t actually plan on doing.
It’s self-discipline to stick to a plan. It’s self-discipline to take action. It’s self-discipline to start something. And self-discipline all starts with your mindset.
You just have to do it.
When I was still at my 9-5 corporate job, I would literally have to trick myself to get out of bed because I was avoiding the discomfort of having to face the fact that my job wasn’t making me happy.
And some people might be saying, Well I’m not ready. It’s going to take too long to figure this out. It’s going to take too long to change my mindset and to implement these steps.
BUUUUUUUT the longer you take to figure it out, the longer you take to start to change your mindset, the longer you take to implement these steps… the longer it’s going to take for you to see the benefits. The longer it’s going to take for you to see the results. The longer it’s going to take for you to feel the positive change that is happening and aligning within you.
So why not.
Why not make this your first step: Stop procrastinating dealing with procrastination.
Something I want to say about this: it’s hard. Okay, these are daily choices you have to make. It takes a tremendous amount of commitment and re-commitment and keeping yourself accountable and have extra support if this is something you really struggle with, and you know help is needed.
And the power of your mind, the power of your mindset is what sets you up for success or for not-so-success.
There are still times where I’ll be in the middle of creating something or doing a task and I’ll get this itch to pick up my phone… and my hand will reach for it and I have to make the very difficult, conscious decision to say No and put my hand back down and get back to my task.
But the more times I do it, the easier it becomes. Because I’m building that strength, I’m building that willpower and that mindset. And I’m increasing my positive evidence, my positive reinforcement.
The more I say no to my distractions, the more I make the sometimes uncomfortable and hard choice to say no to my distractions, the more rewards I get in the long run.
Solution: clarity college
I had a client who working with me, helped ease her anxiety waking up in the mornings and going to her job, and figured out what she really wanted. Now she trusts herself to work from home, AND she had the confidence to ask her employer for that possibility! Now she gets to take her dog out for multiple walks throughout the day and STILL gets the job done.
I had another client message me a few months after we stopped working together, to tell me that I was “literally magic for helping her not only cope, but thrive in law school” and how our work together helped her set herself up for success and how she’s getting all theses offers and opportunities in her field because she was able to ease her mind, focus and take amazing action that got her places.
In Clarity College, we break it all down.
First, we get really clear on what it is you actually want. Then we figure out whats holding you back, what stories are you telling yourself, and how are you getting in your own way.
After we know what we’re working with, we start to rewrite your story. Improve your confidence. Give you the tools and routines necessary to deal with distractions and overwhelm and be able to take that knowledge = resilience throughout your life, even after we’ve stopped working together.
And we end off with creating an action plan for you to live that BIG + free life, I know you’re craving.
Because I’m here to help you start from ground zero, and rebuild a solid foundation that’s going to take you far past anything you could have imagined for yourself, and will create a sustainable way for you to ditch the overwhelm and say no to distracting situations.
To take advantage of this life-changing program, all you have to do is apply for a consultation call with me below, be willing to get uncomfortable and see if we’re a good fit together.