Working in a World of Online Distractions

We are glued to our computers and other tech devices throughout the day simply because we do not want to miss an update or alert.

With uncertainty and ambiguity, there is a human desire to be sure of something. We will keep our laptops and mobile devices switched on to learn more, do more, see more because it creates a feeling comfort and safety. These behaviours are very toxic and will only make us more paranoid. Having recovered from a life full of anxiety, I can assure you that these pings and dings all day long is a sure way to panic.

I totally understand the difficulty if you are working from home and managing kids, puppies, partners, home-cooking, home-schooling, online webinars, fitness workouts, webinars and online dates with friends and family.

With this sort of change that came out of nowhere, it is only normal for us to to know we have something right, something that works and for many of us, that is being updated with the latest news on the virus, the economical and financial impact or health reports and statistics.

These high levels of ambiguity makes us hypersensitive, where the brain signals to the body, there is a threat.

We are living in such a period of panic, that little bits of isolated information can easily turn into threats, and fears, maybe even phobias.

For instance, I used to love food shopping, and now I absolutely hate it. I don’t enjoy it and I try to work with having to maintain social distance whilst looking for a bargain or finding ingredients to a new recipe I’d like to try.

So what would I suggest as a psychologist and entrepreneur who needs a routine to survive and manage anxiety.

1. Learn to work with distractions.

Know them, befriend them, Entertain them so you can Control them.

What is it that you like doing when you are wasting time or procastinating?

Is it worry, engaging in gossip, scrolling through tik tok or quotes on instagram, or becoming obsessed with online gambling and/or stock market figures?

Put them in as a reward after a power hour and set a time limit.

2. Go unplugged from your tech devices

Throughout the day you can turn your mobile on “Do Not Disturb” and your while WFH on your laptop you can block sites like YouTube and or Facebook.

3. Plan your day

So make sure you know what your priorities are and try to knock them off as early as you can, so you can spend the rest of your day doing something meaningful, creative or income-producing.

4. Get to bed early.

Develop a routine that allows you to be worry-free before resting your head on your pillow.

I strongly advise picking up the habit of mindfulness meditation before bed, light conversations, cuddling, light reading or mindful colouring.

5. Get into the habit of working out in the morning.

Morning workouts aid the release of serotonin- the happiness hormone, which is needed to fuel the most creative hours of the day.

Be good to yourself and prioritise your rewards and play time. If you have a hobby or are excited by a new course or activity, use it as a reward for the labour you put it.

So just before your big win, get some painstaking work done and focus on your big project.

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