It’s easier than ever to find yourself distracted or scattered. Work suffers because you’re constantly distracted by emails, other projects, or the latest news developments. Nobody knows the feeling of distraction better than those with ADD and ADHD like the author of FASTER THAN NORMAL, Peter Shankman. But, despite his ADHD, Shankman has achieved incredible feats, becoming a CEO, runner, skydiver, podcaster, Ironman triathlete, and a dad. Now, here are a few of his hacks to help you get more done than you ever have before.
Clean and Simple Environment is Mandatory. It’s not just those with ADD or ADHD who have trouble working in a cluttered environment—it’s easy to be distracted by small trinkets or eye-catching objects in your workspace that can throw you off the task at hand. Take some time to clean up your desk or station of anything but the essentials.
Organize Your Life around Deadlines. Face it—when you say you’ll finish something “soon,” most of the time that project falls off your radar. An easy way to make sure all your projects are done (and done well) is to make deadlines for everything, no matter how big or small.
Work Backward. You have your deadlines set—now what? To be as productive as possible, use your deadline as a starting point and work backward to plan the various steps along the way that will ensure you not only meet your deadline, but meet it with quality. For instance, if you know that research will take you substantially longer than creating a presentation, plan for that so that you’re not caught off guard and have to cram the research portion.
Outsource the Small Stuff. We understand that many of us don’t have assistants we can hand off small tasks to (although, if you do, make sure to utilize them!), but we have helpers in many shapes and forms. If you’re a parent, teach your kids how to do their own laundry so you’re not saddled with using your precious time on something they can do themselves!
Compartmentalize Tasks. Even with strict deadlines and diligent planning, many of us are distracted by the mere thought of not doing some other task. This anxiety is a top culprit of taking us away from the task at hand. By compartmentalizing your tasks and projects, you can alleviate this anxiety. For example, carve out an hour in the morning to do nothing but answer emails and an hour after work on your next presentation. You may feel distracted by your presentation while answering emails, but you’ll soon find comfort in knowing that you’ve already set aside time for each task. This way, you’re concentrating on your presentation and your emails are still getting answered.
These tips were taken from FASTER THAN NORMAL, available at these retailers: