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Clutter Video Tip: How to Get Focused and Be More Productive

 Kodak and Canon have all the luck- they have buttons and dials for focusing. For the rest of us it’s a bit more difficult to stay focused on our task without interruptions. There are so many things in our lives interrupting us- kids, phones computers… It almost seems like their job is to distract from anything that closely resembles productivity. So, today I am discussing how to focus and how to be more productive. Zooming in on this advice will help you to get things done. And there is nothing negative about that!

(Click here to watch on YouTube if you can’t see the embedded player. Or watch the video at http://bit.ly/TCDFocus.)

Transcript:

Hi. I’m Lorie Marrero, creator of the Clutter Diet book and on-line program, and on today’s Clutter Video Tip we’re going to talk about distractions. And I want to share with you my productivity proverb to help you with that.

Now, I believe that distractions are the single biggest enemy of productivity. We are inundated with distractions, more than we ever have been in history. If you want to get verification of that you can just watch the Mad Men show. Look on their desks. There is a glaring absence of one very giant distraction machine, and that is a computer. All they have on their desks are clunky old rotary phones and some papers, maybe an ashtray and a glass of bourbon, but really their biggest distractions were their secretaries. They had tons of time for focused creative time, which is what they do there at their ad agency, and it was remarkable how much more they probably got done in a day when they weren’t drinking and smoking and carousing.

So, really think though about all the things that are beeping at you all day long, and think about which of those things you can control and which you cannot. So, I’d like to share with you something that really inspires me every day. When I went to Italy a couple of years ago on a dream vacation, I really wanted to see the statue of David by Michelangelo. And everybody knows this statue, it’s iconic, it’s a very calm study of the human figure, and it’s a beautiful site to see. But a lot of people don’t realize that there is another David statue in Italy. And it was carved by the sculptor Bernini. And I am a huge Bernini fan now because instead of this calm study of the human figure, he has this dynamic guy who is in action. And I just love his face. I mean, look at this face. It is the epitome of focus and determination. So what are the things that make him focused? Think about it. Priorities and presence. He knows exactly the most important thing that he needs to do right now. And that is to defeat the giant that is standing right in front of him. And he’s got to aim this rock and this sling, and he’s got to do it exactly right, because he’s probably going to have one try. And he’s very present because he’s clear about that priority, and he cannot allow any distractions to mess him up. So every day I look at that face – I actually have that on my wall in my closet on my little motivation board – and this really helps me to get clear and think about what my priorities are for the day. So priorities and presence. Those are the recipe for strong focus.

So here’s my productivity proverb that I think will also help you. If you’ve heard of the Serenity Prayer, it’s kind of like that, it’s like my version of that. “I will improve my productivity when I manage the distractions I cannot control, stop allowing the distractions I do control, and stay present enough to know the difference.” So I hope that’s helpful to you. I hope that motivates you and keeps you focused during the week. And if you’re needing some more time in your day, I can hopefully help you with that too. We have our free report, 30 Ways to Find Time to Get Organized, on our Free Tips page at clutterdiet.com/freetips.

See you next time, and may you always be happy and grateful for having more than enough.

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