Thursday, May 21, 2020

How Do YOU Deal With Distractions?

So much to do...
by Gayle Leeson

Today, it's rainy and quiet. It's a perfect time to get work done. And, patting myself on the back just a little bit here, I feel I've been productive. I'm satisfied with the amount of work I'm getting done.

Yesterday was another story. I was distracted by everything.

Distraction 1: I needed to work on social media posts, which made me decide I wanted a social media planner and tracker, so I spent at least an hour (probably more) looking for the perfect planner that would meet at least most of my needs and that I could have on hand right this instant. I found one on Etsy for $2.99 and downloaded it. Then I printed it out, three-hole-punched the pages, and loaded them into a binder. Do I adore binders and workbooks and planners with forms I can fill out to make me more organized? You'd better believe it! Do I often forget I have them and/or neglect to use them? Another resounding yes! But this one, I actually worked in, so that's a plus...right?

Distraction 2: My daughter let me know her best friend's cousin had her baby. Sweet! The cousin's poor mom (best friend's aunt) sat in the parking lot for hours! She couldn't go in because of the Coronavirus rules. I don't know if she ever got to go inside to see her grandbaby or not. Feeling all the feels for a woman and her daughter who I've only met on two occasions but who are very nice, I  wondered if there was anything I could do to help. There wasn't. :(

Distraction 3: Finally got around to working on social media. Yay, me! Went to find funny images to post because I love making my readers smile or laugh (that's even better). When I'm distractable, though, I can sure spend a lot of time finding funny things. And giggling.

Distraction 4: Whew, I'm ready for a break...and that game I've been playing will reward me if I win the next level... Yeah. I'm ashamed to admit it, but I do that. I tell myself I'm helping to keep my brain sharp.

Distraction 5: Watching TV with my family. Who IS that actress? I know I've seen her somewhere before. What have we seen her in? Nobody knows. I grab my phone and look her up. I learn she was in Criminal Minds. I make an announcement to the room. No one else cares.

Distraction 6: Email. I'm deleting all this mail that isn't absolutely necessary. Wait. Goodreads wants me to be aware of a book recommended by an author I like? Well...I should at least check it out...see what it is. I mean, I liked his book. Maybe I'll like this one too. Minutes later, I order the book from Audible.

Distraction 7: A (former?) reader was angry with me on social media. He claimed he sent me a card and that I marked it Refused. I never received a card from this person. Did he send it to the wrong address? Was it delivered to the wrong address by the mail carrier? I didn't do anything wrong. Why am I letting this person upset me? I keep apologizing for something I had nothing to do with and that is out of my control. Why do I even care that he refuses to accept my apologies? 

So, tell me, what distracts YOU? And how do you overcome the distractions to continue working or whatever it is you're doing?


Tom Burns said...

Some distractions, like people interrupting during working hours, are unavoidable. I just have to decide whether to handle them tactfully or not. However, as an indie author, social media activity is a must - i just have to be careful that marketing doesn't eat into writing time. The way to do that is to schedule each activity, then stick to the schedule. Easier said than done.

Gayle said...

Good advice, Tom!