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On distractions

I usually have detailed plans for my week in terms of what I'd like to be doing when and what I'd like to accomplish by the end of each week.

However, there are times of day when I get distracted and end up spending some time doing completely unproductive things (like browsing social media, for instance).

Initially, I used to try and find ways to curb all distractions so that I would never be distracted and always be doing what I had planned. However, I soon realized that's an ideal that is simply not practical to achieve. That's not how our minds work.

Distractions happen and trying to completely prevent them is almost a fool's errand. I'm yet to come across someone who has successfully done it for a consistently long period.

That doesn't mean there is nothing we can do about it though.

Distractions come in two types. For the lack of a better analogy, I'll call them benign and cancerous.

The cancerous distractions are ones that harm us the more we engage them. These could be distractions that lead to addictions like gambling or they could be detrimental to our mood and overall mental setup by enhancing our comparative streak (social media have been proven to do this).

And the benign ones don't harm us (and might even be beneficial) like going for a walk or playing an engaging game (like Chess).

My approach now is not to try and prevent all distractions (and fail). Instead, it is to channel these distractions to be benign and not cancerous.

Managing our distractions is as important as managing our schedule when it comes to productivity.

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