Minimize Online Distractions

Ok, guys, it’s about to get honest…

I’m easily distracted by shiny things. No, no, wait. That’s true, but not what I really want to confess. The truth is, I am easily distracted by online things.

Facebook, Twitter, favorite blogs, Twitter again (you know, in case anything new is posted), the Disney blog, checking blog stats, Twitter…again. Whether on my phone or on the computer, I find myself drawn to distractions.

Chances are I’m not alone in this. I know in my circle of friends its kind of a running joke that we all have ADD – always checking the iPhones or “multitasking” as we like to call it. And, I know that my writer friends probably struggle as I do to balance working on the computer with playing on the computer. Creative people tend to have several different strands of thought going at all times, dealing with distraction is just part of life.

Recognizing my own limitations, I don’t try to completely remove online distractions. Instead I try to minimize them and use them to my advantage. Utilizing a distraction as a reward for work completed allows me to indulge in a bit of social media while ensuring that my work gets done too.

One idea to minimize online distractions would be to use a timer. Set it for 30 minutes or an hour then work diligently until the timer goes off. At the ding, take a 10 minute break to browse social media or check your favorite blog.

Another option – what I do – is to set a specific goal such as “I will complete one blog post before reading the Disney World blog.” Or whatever grown-up, sophisticated blog you read.

If you find you have a hard time sticking to your goals or to the timer, ask a trusted friend to keep you accountable for the time you spend online.

Do you struggle with online distractions? What have you done to minimize this?

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