This March I have created a yearly plan for the first time of my life. I felt tremendous energy and excitement, because I’ve finally realized and shaped my goals and they became more tangible. Finally I could envision them!
However, as it often happens, once you choose your path, the Universe starts tempting you to leave it by sending you other offers. Every now and then you are getting offered Eve’s apples which seem to look far more attractive than your own kiwis or whatever you have there on your chosen path. You immediately become covered with a fog of a new idea and nothing seems more perspective and shiny as this new opportunity! This is *huge*! – that’s all you can think about at that moment.
Does that sound familiar to you?
I’ll tell you – I experience it all the time! If you are an easy starter, this may become quite a challenge! By the way, there is a scientific background behind this one called a “fear of missing out”. In a nutshell, it’s the fear that we have made the wrong decision on how to spend our time, as “you can imagine how things could be different”.
So, how do I personally fight a temptation?
My recipe of saying no to new distracting ideas:
When I am getting a new idea, I am immediately writing it down, and then put it on the “shelf”, some place where I store all my ideas. I am telling myself – I won’t lose anything if I just postpone its implementation, until I reach my current goal. Thus I am putting it to the queue of the next goal ideas. And it makes me work on my current goal even with more effort. Because I can’t wait to implement the next one!
Here is a couple of tips how others say no to distractions.
Immediately agree to the new opportunity so that it becomes the new priority, as Tim Harford suggests in his article. You have to start working on it today! Yeah, that’s no typo! You are throwing away everything you have worked on before and start from the very beginning. Now, this is meant to scare you out of going for it. If it doesn’t scare you, then give it another chance!
And the best one which I will definitely use myself is:
Just say to yourself “I don’t do the distraction thing”. This approach was actually been scientifically tested on women. The power of “I don’t do this” statement is so immense that it hugely wins over “I can’t do this” or any other helpful phrases. With this weapon in your hands you will successfully beat back distractions in 80% cases, as opposed to just 10% if you choose to say “I can’t do the distraction thing”.
Be wise, say that you don’t do that and it will become a reality!
So, what about you, how often are you getting distracted from your plan?