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Indistractable: How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life

“In the future, there will be two kinds of people in the world: those who let their attention

and their lives be controlled and coerced by others and those who proudly call themselves


Are you trying to focus in a world that constantly diverts attention? Here are some tips that can help.

Indistractable: Learn how to cope with the underlying discomfort that makes you look for distraction.

Distraction is a coping mechanism that the brain created to avoid pain and discomfort. Since people are never satisfied or happy for long, distraction is always there.

Distraction can make you feel like you are powerless over your behavior. Instant gratification is an important part of a distraction’s appeal. This is why planning in advance can help you control your choices and attention. Overcome distraction by managing unpleasant feelings better. Learning to manage your time really means learning how to manage your pain. You need to make your tasks less vulnerable to distraction and develop self-compassion.

Trying to actively suppress a distraction or compulsion may even make it more powerful. The acceptance and commitment therapy includes a four-step approach.

First, recognize the internal sensation that creates the need for distraction. What unpleasant feeling or thought are you trying to repress, soothe, or avoid? Second, write down that thought or feeling, assigning a date and time. Third, consciously explore the sensation of that internal trigger.

Notice how vulnerability to distraction increases when transitioning between one activity and the

next. Everyone struggles with distraction during transitions from one thing to another. It’s important to take responsibility for our actions without causing the toxic guilt that can make us feel worse and lead us to look for even more distractions to avoid this shame.

Apply a “10-minute rule:” allow yourself to indulge in a distraction in a period of 10 minutes.

By then, you will probably move on, and you will no longer need the distraction.

Plan how you’ll spend your time to track whether you reach your goals.

“Timeboxing” identifies what you need to be doing every hour of your day. A timeboxed value-based schedule helps you pay attention to what’s important to you without wasting time on what isn’t.

The cure for impulsiveness is forethought. Planning in advance ensures you will follow through with your daily tasks.

Plan your calendar, keeping in mind your personal values – not according to what you have to

do, but to why you have to do it. Schedule timeboxes to align with your values for yourself, your work, and your relationships. Take 15 minutes weekly to review how and when something

distracted you from the schedule. Decide if you should modify your timeboxes to better reflect your values.

Synchronize your schedule regularly with other stakeholders – including colleagues and managers. Timeboxing fosters a productive workplace and mutual trust. Align schedules at intervals that are convenient for both parties and adjust your schedule when you need to.

Discover the best way to fight the distractions of everyday life, consistently connect with your leadership team, and predictably turn them into highly engaged employees. Book a complimentary appointment for us to discuss at or call me at +1 (604) 943-0800.

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Inscape Consulting Group
Greg Nichvalodoff, BSc. BM (Honors), MBA, PCC, CMC
Office: 604.943.0800
Mobile: 604.831.4734