1-Sentence-Summary: Indistractable explores a universal topic of interest: how our modern gadgets and technology distract us from work and cause real concentration issues, impacting our performance and even the quality of our lives, and how we can address the root cause of the problem to eradicate it.
Read in: 4 minutes
Favorite quote from the author:
Have you ever caught yourself getting distracted at the smallest things? It could be a pop-up notification on your phone, and you ditch your focus on work completely at that insignificant stimulus? The problem with the little gadgets is that they’re supposed to make our life easier, and while they do so, they also cause a series of other problems, like distraction.
While it doesn’t seem like such a big issue at first sight, distraction can seriously impact our work performance, consume our precious time, and alter our work-life balance. Therefore, to increase productivity, have more time to spend with your loved ones, and target your focus better, Indistractable by Nir Eyal comes forth with a series of solutions for this concerning issue.
For now, let’s explore my three favorite lessons from the book:
- Define your internal triggers and master controlling them to tame distraction.
- To achieve your goals, you must plan your week ahead and include plenty of quality time with those around you and yourself.
- Hack the distractions by using self-made pacts.
It’s time for us to explore these lessons in detail and focus on the important part of the summary: what do these three little titles really mean? Let’s see!
Lesson 1: Keep distractions in control by observing them objectively and assessing them
We all get distracted – there’s no question about that. While you may think that your phone or other gadgets you own may be the cause of your distraction, it’s all rooted deeper inside you. In fact, your triggers wired within are the reason you look for distraction.
Let’s put it this way: if you didn’t have your phone, you’d probably be counting the books on the shelf, staring blankly at the wall, or finding anything that keeps you procrastinating. Therefore, your internal triggers distract you. As such, to eliminate them, you just have to recognize them first. Next time you feel like giving in to a distraction, write down how you feel and what’s the reason for your lack of focus.
Could it be anxiety, anger, boredom, or anything else? Identify that emotion, then you’ll be able to let go of them. How? Psychologists suggest visualizing them being carried away by a force, like water, or wind. Diminish them in your mind, and your body will follow. You can also try making your tasks more engaging by setting a record time to finish them, or try a creative way of doing them. This way, you’ll be less prone to indulge in your social media.
Lesson 2: Use timeboxing to set intervals of work and increase productivity
You might’ve heard this before, but planning is an extremely important step on your way to success. Without a strategic approach, how can you know if you’re on track or not, or what are you trying to achieve at all? For this reason, timeboxing is a great approach to achieving goals. Essentially, it implies that you allocate a specific time frame to accomplish a task each week, and try your best to avoid distractions in that specific time.
Let’s say you’re writing a book, but fail to coordinate your time and end up procrastinating more than you actually write. Now, if you timebox correctly, you save that part of the morning from, let’s say, nine to twelve, to write and not do anything else. Timeboxing implies allocating specific time slots to accomplish a task. Frankly, this doesn’t necessarily guarantee that you’ll actually accomplish everything you set for yourself, but actively trying and knowing when it’s time to work, instead of just waiting for sudden bursts of inspiration, is definitely a step forward.
How to start? Ironically, the first time you’ll plan is some quality time for yourself. Caring for your well-being will ensure that you don’t miss the most important part: enjoying life and resting. Too often, we forget to do these things, forgetting that life is made to be lived as humans do, not as highly-effective machines do. Moreover, if you have your needs checked, chances are you’ll be more productive in your actual work. Therefore, grab a pen, create a weekly schedule, and make sure to plan some quality time with your family, friends, and yourself.
Lesson 3: Making little deals with yourself can help you stay on track, as long as you keep them
The author discovered a powerful way to stay on track – self-made pacts! Although this little trick can get a bit uncomfortable at times, it’s a sure way to successfully complete your tasks, but only as long as you keep your word to yourself. So, what’s the catch? Give yourself a fine! That’s right – every time you get off track, miss a gym session, go a working day without work, and so on, the author burns a 100$ bill. Well, that’s a bit out of my element, so I suggest donating it, but you get the main idea!
Now, there are other ways to ensure that you stay on track. Study/ Work buddies are a great option! Talk to one of your friends and meet somewhere to have a productive session. If they’re not up for it, you can always find committed individuals online, on websites like Focusmate, which pairs you up with a random person to study together. Moreover, commitments made jointly and publicly are proven to make people stick to them more than promises you make in your mind, so that’s just a bonus!
The third way of making a pact with yourself is through the identity pact, meaning that you commit to living up to your best self and a positive version of yourself. Make it a point to define yourself as a great version of your future self, without using negativity. For example, let’s assume you don’t eat meat. Instead of saying you can’t have meat, which builds temptation, say you’re a vegetarian, and you opt to not have it. See how much of a change that does? Good! Now, build an image of yourself in your mind that’s indistractable, has a remarkable focus, and is very consistent, instead of focusing on the negative aspects.
Indistractable delves into the area of self-improvement and talks about the devastating effects that technology, our indispensable devices, and the urge to procrastinate have on our life. By optimizing the way we work, balancing our personal and professional lives, and learning a few effective practices to combat distractions, we can become more productive and efficient, while still having time for self-care. From small acts of change, like organizing your desktop and email, to changing the way you think and manage your time, this book will teach you all there is to know about becoming indistractable.
Who would I recommend the Indistractable summary to?
The 30-year-old person who wants to learn how to optimize their time and change their mindset for the better, the 20-year-old who feels as if they get too easily distracted by their phone and can’t focus on their studies, or the 37-year-old concerned parent who wants to educate their children right.
Last Updated on October 5, 2022