They say the first step in solving a problem is to identify it—so let’s pin down a major problem that threatens everyone’s productivity: Addiction feeds.
Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, dating sites, and even email are all part of what I call your “attention-addiction feeds.” They suck your energy and time which could have been used for some productive to work.
Ever notice how your mind itches to check Twitter when you’re transitioning between one task at work and another?
Your brain gets little spurts of dopamine and serotonin whenever some one pays us attention.
The human brain also produces happy drugs when we’re busy accomplishing a task.
When we’re between productive tasks, anxiety creeps in as these hormones dip.
You may even feel physically shaky!
To fix that withdrawal instantly, your brain wants to take the path of least resistance.
Clicking over to see who’s retweeted you, messaged you, or otherwise given you a shot of attention is easier than beginning a new task.
How do you stop yourself from reaching for the easy fix?
You need to use manual override to make your brain quit pushing you to take the easy way. Paradoxically, this often means giving yourself regularly scheduled breaks.
Plan breaks for the interim between tasks—breaks that give you pleasure without your Twitter feed’s ability to drag you into an infinite number of distractions.
Use the restroom, drink, or eat between tasks, instead of waiting till these become pressing necessities.
Going to the kitchen or bathroom when you’re immersed in a rewarding task is a distraction at the very time when you should be able to rely upon the least possible amount of willpower to concentrate!
Don’t keep Facebook or Twitter open; the blips letting you know a fix of attention is coming are too distracting. Cut off the attention-addiction feeds and reclaim your productive time!