SOME OF MY GOOD FRIENDS would tell you that, if you looked up ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) in the dictionary, you would see my picture.

Very funny! But hey, what are friends for?

I have to ADMIT: Sometimes harnessing my energy IS a challenge. I used to be easily distracted by multiple opportunities. So completing any project took extreme focus and accountability from someone other than me.

But that’s all changed. I’ve learned how to not be a victim of (imagine scary music playing) -

The “Distractor Factor”

What were we talking about? (Just kidding.) It takes self-discipline to stay focused on completing a task or achieve a goal. There are more opportunities for you and me to be distracted than in any time in history. And that’s this e-zine’s –

FYI Takeaway: Discipline over self and outside distractions is paramount and foundational to your success. It’s imperative that you control the flow of external static and internal static. It’s necessary that you realize who or what is creating “the noise” in your life; the “scary music” and do not allow it to happen — or at least minimize your exposure to the occurrence.

Distractions are everywhere. And they affect every one of us at some level. I hear about distractions all the time in my seminars and training sessions within every industry imaginable. So it’s not just select situations.

Of course, technology has a lot to with it. I know for me, part of the challenge was controlling the gadgets. But it’s more than just the Blackberry (aka, crackberry). Its email, instant messages, texting, social media, Twitter, Face Book, YouTube, LinkedIn. And its phone calls. And ESPN. And it has a human face as well. Its business, family, friends and even strangers. Putting it all together –

It’s life. And has Frank Sinatra would sing, “That’s Life.” And I’m saying, “Get over it,” or better yet –

Master The Distractions.

I’ve implemented some simple strategies and set up some personal rules and guidelines to help me stay focused throughout the day.

FYI ACTION IDEA: First, I strongly recommend that you prioritize your time and then compartmentalize it. I’ll explain my compartmentalization strategy in a minute. I also want to encourage you to establish personal guidelines and rules that you abide by throughout the day.

To illustrate these distraction avoidance strategies, I’ll bullet-point a handful of my rules on a “typical day” and also show you how I compartmentalize my time so I can be more productive.

NOTE: When I say “typical day” I’m referring to an office day. My rules are changed slightly when I am out of the office giving a keynote speech or facilitating a training session.

Here are some personal guidelines and rules:

  • Wake up every day at 4:30am - Workout / Write / Breakfast with family. (Personal Time & Family Time)
  • Don’t read email or turn on cell phone until 8:15am (Only exception: A previously scheduled contact.)
  • 8:45am - 6:00pm - No personal phone calls, emails, errands — for example, Bank / Cleaners / Post Office (Money Time).
  • Don’t answer my business phone or cell phone during Money Time unless it’s a scheduled call.
  • Don’t return personal emails or personal calls during Money Time.
  • Don’t answer my home phone or cell phone during breakfast or dinner with my family. (Family Time)
  • 6:30pm - 8:30pm is (Family Time) - no cell phone / emails / business.
  • 8:30pm - 10:30pm - (Personal / Private Time).
  • 4:30am - 8:00am on weekends is (Personal Time / Private Time).
  • 8:00am - 11:00pm on weekends is (Family Time / Social Time).
  • No cell phone on Sunday. (Family Time)
  • No computer on Sunday after 8:00am. (Family Time).

I appreciate that this approach is personal. Your needs and plans will undoubtedly be somewhat different. But I’ve found this type of structure, discipline and regimentation works for me. I’m not saying it will work for you or that you should do this specifically. This is how I choose to set up my days and weeks. It has taken me a long time to realize what is most productive for me in terms of personal effectiveness, family harmony and business productivity.

A friend of mine once observed, “If your life is not out of balance, your check book will be.”

Funny? Well, I get it. However, I don’t agree. My check book and my life are balanced and doing quite well.

I have rules and guidelines in reference to other areas of my life as well: Nutrition and exercise … Spirituality …Mental health … Finances … and more –

All aligned with my goals. For me, this structure and compartmentalization blocks out distractions that would otherwise pull me off course. If your goals are clear, then I suspect a strategy like this will enable you to steer more directly toward success.

If you’re committed to your success and want to eliminate or minimize the Distractor Factor in your life, I encourage you to work up your own version of these personal rules, guidelines and compartmentalization strategies and apply them to your life.

Make It Your Best Year Ever!

Author's Bio: 

Eric Taylor is the Chief Inspiration Officer of and founder of New Jersey based Empowerment Group International. He delivers more than 100 energized and interactive keynotes, workshops and seminars each year to corporations, associations and tradeshows. He is the author of the Energy Passport, Co-creator of the Best Year Ever! Success System and Co-author of The Complete Sales Training Encyclopedia. To get complete details about Eric’s background, his products and services, visit Eric Taylor’s Blog and review Eric Taylor’s Profile.