My theme for this year is “slow down and simplify.” As I’m walking through that process, I’m trying to find ways to change the pace of my days. I’m finding that I’m often too reactionary and doing a lot of “work” without getting enough things complete. So, I’m taking a step back and rethinking the pace of my day.
Here are 3 ways I’m slowing down today:
- Minimize distractions. Usually, I have slack, our internal communications chat, open all day, it’s distracting. I also have gotten into the bad habit of flipping over to my email often, just to see if something has rolled in that needs my attention. Both of these habits make me great at feeling like I’m getting work done when all I’m really doing is distracting myself with communication and avoiding the real work that needs to be completed. So, today I will only be communicating during work breaks only, allowing me to focus on the important tasks in front of me.
- The Pomodoro Technique. This is a productivity method where you focus intently on something, allowing zero distractions, for 25 minutes. Then you take a 5-minute break. You do this process four times, and then you take a longer 15 – 30-minute break. The beauty of this technique is that there is no task switching and thus no loss of productivity. It forces a deep focus that tends to produce better, and faster, work. This is the app I will be using.
- Planning my work. This morning I won’t dive into my work, email, slack or otherwise. Instead, I will look at what I need to get done today, make a plan and then begin to execute. This will set me up to be proactive and thoughtful as I move into my day. I choose not to be reactionary today.