In the past, I used to do quite a lot of social networking while working. I would have my notepad program (gEdit), browser (Icecat), and social network service desktop program (Gwibber) on all at the same time. I would switch between checking my Statusnet or Twitter for the latest news, researching an article, and chatting with someone. Obviously this is a recipe for disaster.
After reading Leo Babauta‘s Focus, I realized that my trigger was boredom and it made me click on Gwibber more than I was researching and writing a post. I had to do something else besides do those when I get bored so I did the following instead:
- Open all the sites connected to my research
- Removed all my accounts on Gwibber
- Changed the passwords to random ones using a password generator like KeepassX
- Turned off the modem
This way, I would be able to work on my articles in peace without any notifications. Even if I needed my modem to be on, the removal of my accounts from Gwibber made it less easier to access my SNS (instant negative feedback for the old habit). If I got bored, I’d get up, put a 10 minute alarm clock, then read a book or something (positive feedback for the new habit).
What do you do to make your work distraction-free?