Work Home Distractions Blessing or Curse?
He walked right in, door wide open wearing only his boxers without a care in the world while the entire online video audience watched in disbelief.
That’s a typical day in my house. ^_^ Can you relate?
Work-at-home disruptions happen to even the most productive people.
For those who work from home, it is a balancing act, just like in the workplace.
Just recently, Professor Robert Kelly was being interviewed live when in come his children.
He handled it with grace, don’t you think?
Here’s a spinoff from his interview from a mom’s perspective:
That was pretty hilarious, right? Share it on Twitter so your friends can have a laugh break too.Check out this spoof on the Professor Robert Kelly #wah interview MOM style Click To Tweet
You might think you have the corner market on distractions while working from home, but I think Drew Goldberg of Hungry Partier (a travel blog) has a pretty amazing corner too. Distractions don’t prevent him from working.
I was just in a massive bus crash in India. It was the closest near death experience I’ve ever had. I’m writing this right now on my iPhone notepad, just an hour after my bus completely flipped over the freeway and rolled in the dust, somewhere in the middle of North West India. My hands are still shaking. I can feel my heart beating out of my chest. I just checked my pulse to make sure that I’m still alive. – Drew Goldberg
Kind of makes my barking dog, interruptions by family members, and phone calls a breeze. ^_^
Hey, beautiful. Check out the Quick and Easy Anti-Disruption Checklist I made.
Simply click on the image, fill in your email address, and within 10-minutes it will be in your inbox.
And if outside distractions weren’t enough, I have to deal with shiny object syndrome which is pretty much a self-induced distraction.
I’m getting better, really. ^_^
I have to admit that even though I write about productivity and getting things done, I am easily distracted.
Would you do me a favor? Add this to Pinterest.
Not only that, I procrastinate.
Did I just blow your mind?
Oh, but I do have periods of very focused work so I guess that helps. 😉
One of the reasons I’m such a productivity and time management junkie is because I need all the help I can get.
If I don’t have my lists and reminders, I’m lost in dreamland.
When you work from home you are bombarded with noise, distractions, and interruptions.
Well, you’re not alone. I asked a couple of friends to share what their top interruptions are and the common answer was children (and family).
Interesting, huh? Most people who work at home usually do it to be close to their family. ^_^
Q. What is your biggest source of interruption?
Family, Skype, and Social Media
A. David Leonhardt (President, THGM Writers)
When the family is around, it’s them. No question, they would be helpless without me to fetch things, answer questions, fix things….and all the etceteras you could think of.
When the family is not around, it’s probably Skype and social media. In a regular office situation, people have some social interaction, but everybody gets back to their desks and works on their screens.
When you work from home, both work and social are on your screen. Separating the two is very difficult. You almost have to turn everything off to keep focused. This is easy to do when I am writing a book; the most I need the Internet is to fact-check or look up information.
But for most other things, I find I need to respond to messages, seek input, follow up with people….in short, it’s hard to separate work on distractions.
SARA >> I’m currently taking a 30 day distraction challenge with my friend Angela Wills. One of the things we’ve committed to do over the next 30 days is not to be a slave to social media (Facebook specifically). For me, this means not checking Facebook on my phone and limiting my time to one session in the mornings and one in the evenings.
A. Philtrate (The Teaching Escape Guy)
Grandchildren – I help babysit an 18-month-old and am on the school run for 2 older grandsons. Between the baby crying and wanting attention my mornings are VERY difficult. I try to get up at 5 am, so I can get some work done before he arrives, but it doesn’t always work out.
SARA >> Late last year I started the Happiness Habit Routine by Michelle Reeves, The Joy Chaser. It’s geared toward busy mamas, but I’m sure busy grandpas can benefit too. Here’s a 5-day course to help overcome overwhelm.
Deliveries and Pets
A. priyaflorence (Blogging since 2003 for myself and my clients)
My biggest source of interruption is people ringing the doorbell at all times of day, usually for deliveries.
My dogs also demand my attention if I work for too long.
The little one will nudge me with her nose, insisting I give her some attention and not stare at my computer all day.
SARA >> I’d put a do not disturb notice on my door, as for the dogs, I’ve no advice as I have one too. They can disrupt our work, but give us love.
A. Eric Brantner (Founder of Scribblrs.com)
My biggest source of interruption (and inspiration, honestly) is my two-year-old daughter. Since I work from home, she often wants to come into my office to hang out and play with me.
Thankfully, my wife works a part-time schedule and is usually around to entertain her during most of my work hours, so these interruptions are often very brief and in many ways quite refreshing.
They remind me how lucky I am to be able to work from home and be around to watch my child grow up, and they inspire me to continue working hard to provide our family with a better life.
SARA >> Can’t get more perfect than a 2-year-old saying “Daddy, play”. You truly are blessed. ^_^
A.Joe Colling (Writer/Blogger/Spiritual Agriculturist) explains what many creative entrepreneurs go through on a regular basis.
So, my biggest source of interruption is my own mind generating ideas at a speed The Flash (comic book superhero) would be proud of! Although sometimes it is a burden to my current plans/goals. That’s it! 🙂
SARA >> My friend Kelly believes we are NOT helpless when it comes to bright shiny object syndrome. She’s created a great resource with a video and worksheets to help.
Plus, Jimmy D. Brown suggests that you set aside time each week for distractions. For me, I’ve set aside Friday’s. This is my first week and so far it’s worked. I just place my distraction emails in a folder and look at them on Friday. I’m sure this can be used for ideas as well. Evernote might be a great tool for you to use.
A. lyliarose (UK Lifestyle Blogger)
My children! That sounds terrible I know, but it’s difficult to try and work from home with a 22-month-old around all the time and my four-year-old outside of school hours.
I am employed in the evenings, so the only time I can work is when my children are here in the day time or at weekends. It’s as though they know as soon as I’m working and need all my attention when I am!
SARA >> I remember those days. Even though my little ones aren’t so little now, I still get interruptions but from my elders. ^_^
When my boys were little I did a lot of crocheting while watching them play. If I was on the computer at all, it was when they were sleeping or when my husband was home.
You’ll find something that works. One friend used different hats. When she was “at work” she wore her work hat and when it was time to play, she wore her play hat. It worked for a while. ^_^
My biggest source of interruption can vary depending on the day. I’ ve got very good at working during the hours my teen is at school, especially on very important projects. Because I work from home, however, I often have unplanned interruptions from my landlord, the maintenance person, friends calling because they know I’m at home.
Lately, one of my biggest sources has been my elderly and sick dog. She’s been very uncomfortable due to arthritis, is very spoiled and will only hang out quietly for a couple of hours before she’s bothering me to go downstairs for a walk.
Once there, she decides she wants to stay but I must continue working. This often ends in me dragging her back up the stairs with the promise that she can hang out with my daughter comes home.
THIS is how I get more quiet time once the teen is home. She spends time on her Kindle babysitting the dog and everyone is happy and I can usually get 2 hours of total quiet. 🙂
I’ ve gotten better a disciplining myself to turn off facebook, shutdown emails and now find these others distractions pop up.
SARA >> I’d recommend either setting time aside to take the 30-day distraction challenge or use a Chrome extension like Strict Workflow. It does NOT allow you to use any Social or distracting sites during your Pomodoro (25 minute work time). Having an older child who can help with your ill dog is a blessing.
8 Homeschooled Children
A. Alexander Doak (Founder of SatelliteTechnicians.com)
My single biggest source of interruption is eight active, homeschooled children when I’m working from home. Due to our current location in the world,
I’m able to work the night shift. This makes it easier for me to focus on work when everyone else is sleeping. Then the challenge becomes finding a quiet place to sleep during the day.
We worked hard to get where we are today. I recommend taking serious, physical steps to separate a home office from the home. Bar doors. Build barricades. Install locks. Then wear headphones while you are working to drown out the background noise.
Don’t feel bad that you are “ignoring” your family. Just make sure your work hours are limited and well-defined. Give your family the same kind of focus and attention once you are done working for the day.
SARA >> Sounds like you’re dedicated to providing the best life for your family. Yes, separating work and home life is imperative. I really like how you pointed out that it’s important to give your family as much focused time as you do work. VERY important in my book. ^_^
Mr. T and Molson ^_^
A. Burchisms (Stand Up Comedian, Blogger, YouTuber)
My two pets for sure! Molson (Dog) & Mr. T (Cat) are constantly looking for attention while I am working on the computer doing stuff for my blog.
Molson isn’t that bad as he is older and basically only interrupts me when he wants to go outside to go #1 or #2. So that’s just a quick and easy 5 to 10-minute walk and is a nice break to refresh my mind before I get back to work.
Mr. T, however, is very annoying and very needy. I used to work in my bedroom where my corner desk is where I had 2 computers set up. 1 desktop and 1 laptop. I was forced to keeping T in my room with me because I was having an issue where he was urinating near my front door to the apartment. Thus I didn’t feel comfortable letting him out of the room by himself. Of course, as most cats will do, he would meow constantly for me to open the door so he could roam the house. He would also walk in front of the computer to get my attention.
For a while, I would put him in his cage (He actually likes the cage and goes right to sleep) when he became too annoying. But recently I decided to purchase a Microsoft Surface Pro 4 and now I simply do all my work out in the living area where I can work and make sure he isn’t going to urinate in that one spot.
I’m happy and so is MR. T!
SARA >> Well it certainly looks like Mr. T and Molson keep you busy. I’m glad you found a happy medium to make them and you satisfied. ^_^
What about you? What is your biggest distraction when working at home?
Whatever the distraction, work around it. I believe this is the best part of working on your own schedule.
You can adapt.
You can work at nights, change location, put headphones on to block out noise (or pretend like you’re on a call), or work in tiny sprints.
My home life is so crazy chaotic sometimes I made a list of tasks to do in 15-minutes.
I just pull out my list and get to work when I have a few minutes to spare. I’m working on a 60-seconds list too. ^_^
Don’t forget to grab Kelly’s Bright Shiny Object worksheets and Audio. ^_^
Turn your Bright Shiny Object Addiction into Bright Shiny Object Management – Audio + Worksheets
Oh and Moms, if you ever get that age-old question, “what do you do all day”, answer with this video.
I’m joining the Sits Girls #TheSwayLife Saturday Sharefest