Pay Attention!

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Pay Attention!

Entrepreneur Magazine, Sept. 2014, article by Joe Robinson

Chronic interruptions-of the digital and human variety-are assaulting our concentration. E-mails, phone calls, text messages, other people, and more are bombarding us with interruptions all day long (and all night as well!). Here are a few quotes from the article:

“Chronic intrusions shrink attention spans, drive stress by burning up mental and emotional resources and trigger mistakes. An interruption averaging 2.8 seconds-say, one of those blinking notifications in the corner of your computer screen-can double the risk of error.”

“It’s the newest addiction. There are in-patient centers now for people with technology addiction. Marriages break up.”

“The more interruptions one has, the more they erode the self-regulation equipment…Interruptions shred the ability to self-regulate everything from checking e-mail to consuming Hagen-Daz or Jack Daniels.”

“This is why technology is so addictive. It can destroy the ability to control impulsivity, which means more frequent message checking and web browsing and shorter attention spans. That, in turn, leads to more distractibility and less ability to see tasks through to completion-exactly the sort of symptoms psychiatrist Hallowell began to see in the ’90s in patients who thought they had attention-deficit disorder.”

So what does one do to overcome, or at least lessen, this tendency to get distracted? Before I answer that, I’d love to hear from all of you. What do you do to cut down on distractions, both digital and human? Share your ideas with me, I’ll condense them for next week’s blog, and I’ll include other ideas that were in the article. Oops, gotta go, my phone’s ringing!

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Brad Warren, business coach, seminar leader, author, and speaker
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