WORKPLACE / JUL. 30, 2014
version 2, draft 2

Distractions Are More Powerful Than You Think

I worked in a gaming retail store through most of my life. If you want to talk about distractions, you are talking to the right guy. The fact that I was surrounded by my hobby was hard enough, but the fact that the store had displays with the latest games made things even worse. Fortunately, I never really let them distract me much from what I was doing.

In your own line of work the distractions can come from a number of places. You put all of your focus on one thing and all of a sudden something else has caught you off guard. There isn’t a hard and fast rule about looking at the bigger picture. You can’t read a book and know how to do it. Instead, you have to practice.

Keeping the big picture as your focus allows you to see everything that is going on. As you can see in the video here, the man is so focused on one thing that everything else is slipping by him. As an audience, we can see everything going on. Why is that? We are looking at the big picture. We are sitting farther out and we can see everything that is happening. Even then, we are still caught off guard by some of the actions that take place.

Your personal life can also cause distractions while you are at work. Make sure that you have a way to separate your personal and work life to ensure distractions are at a minimum. In time, things will become clearer. Whatever is distracting you with your personal life, be it a new love interest, busy school schedule or family matters, keep those out of your mind while at work.

The biggest thing to remember is that the further you step back from an issue, the more of it you can see. Imagine a project as a mountain. If you are too close, focusing just on the individual parts of the mountain, you are going to miss the entire thing. By standing far from it, you can see each piece of that mountain and see just how you need to climb it.

Some of us need “distractions” to keep us focused at work though. Things like items on our desks or some music in the background. Make sure those items are in the background and don’t take up your attention. Doing this ensures that you are surrounded by the things you enjoy, without causing you to lose the big picture.

Distractions can be dangerous to your career. Just like in life (texting while driving), not focusing on the task or tasks at hand can lead to negative consequences. Look at the big picture and focus on the individual points that need to be focused on and you will find much more success in your working career.


Image Source: YouTube

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