On my smart phone, I used to be inundated with different kinds of pings every few minutes. Initially they were all sound and visual alerts.
Now I have these two bad habits. One I get distracted extremely easily and two I keep saying Yes a lot. I think the second one has to do more because of my stupid EGO. Anytime someone talks about how valuable my input is, I end up saying yes. With Alerts on your cellphone its a double whammy.
The Alerts first of all disturb you and take your attention away from whatever you were doing and second , quite a few times you end up reading the message the alert is showing (which means you are saying yes to reading the message) because it seems to be something important.
About three weeks back or a little more, I read the book Indistractable by Nir Eyal. One of the things with all these Apps that you use on the phone is that the moment you down load an App, by default the settings allow Alerts to appear. Initially there’s one App , then another and then there are another 20 and all of them are pinging you. You don’t realise the damage these innocuous things cause.
Coming back to the book, Indistractable, Nir, simply asked to go to the settings and to switch off the alerts. It took me less than 3 minutes to switch them off – if you. know where to go and do it. Initially for the first few days I was very anxious that I might miss out on something important when the phone didn’t ping.Over a period of the next one week, I got used to my phone not ringing. Now I watch for my SMSes or WhatsApp messages every 3-4 hours. Nothing before that. For some specific sender’s, I have got the alerts still active, but of rat e rest its gone.
What I realised was that each time I saw my phone , I got pulled into something or the other and then before I know, I have already spent another 10-15 minutes on non-essential activities.
Each time I was saying YES to looking at the alert and then the news and then something else, I was saying NO to my concentration, I was saying NO to finish what was important rather than what was urgent for someone else.
This doesn’t mean I have become super effective. Hardly. But this has taught me to start eliminating as many things which cause me to say YES to things which are so called urgent.
At the end of the day, you are, the results you produce. If you end up saying YES to these unnecessary items, you will end up saying NO to getting your results. You will not be able to chase your dreams because you will end up chasing multiple rabbits going in all directions.
Till next time then.