We live in a world where we are expected to do several things at once without going crazy. This concept is pretty crazy. If we’re only giving part of ourselves to a task, how can we expect something to be done quickly or executed flawlessly? That’s the problem with most work environments today, but this is especially true for writing.
I too, have focused on several things at once when I’m supposed to be writing. The next thing I knew hours and went by and I hadn’t completed anything. By that time I lost interest too. Here are a few distractions that take away from my writing time.
Social Networking: Facebook, Twitter, Reddit. I go to check it for a second and the next thing I know I’ve wasted at least an hour. While I enjoy interacting with others on social networks, it can be hard to walk away sometimes. You want to see what the next tweet or comment will be. I guess that’s what they mean by fear of missing out. However, you’re not missing out on too much because the comments and conversation will still be there when you get back.
Email: I’ve stopped mid sentence to check my email. Usually it’s just junk mail, but sometimes it’s important and I’ll stop whatever I’m doing to get the information they need. That wouldn’t be so bad if I decided not check my social networking accounts after I checked my email.
Snacking: Have you ever got up to have a snack and then not return right away? Me too. Grabbing a snack usually leads to nap time or…
Television: Some writers (myself included) like to have the TV on for background noise. At times it can be a major distraction. If a good movie or show comes on, you’ll be tempted to give that your full attention instead of writing.
Cell phones: Text messages and phone calls can be a big distraction. You take one call and the next thing you know you’re making a million more to friends and relatives. The same goes for text messages. And of course your phone happens to have games and your social networking accounts on there as well. It’s a vicious cycle.
What are some distractions you deal with as a writer or in other professions? What do you do to combat them? Sound off in the comments below!