How to improve productivity & get rid of distractions

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Whether you are a student or working professional, getting rid of distractions and improving productivity should be on the top of your list. 

We live in a distracted world. 

There are so many apps, movies or tv shows to watch. It seems we don’t have enough time.

We have probably stopped living and are in some kind of cruise control mode where we are just stuck in some kind of loop. In this loop, we are repeating the same things and we don’t have any AWARENESS about our lives anymore. 

We are spending hours on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Netflix, Youtube, Prime video etc. And we are not doing that rarely, we are doing it on a daily basis.

Take this simple example;

If you spend 4 hrs everyday on social media apps (Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, TikTok etc);

Yearly hours = 365*4

                    = 1460 hrs / year

Days in a year = 1460/ 24= 60.83 days in year

Nearly 2 months in a year.

Daily hours on youtube/netflix = 4 hrs.  Yearly hours = 365*4  = 1460 hrs / year.  Days in a year = 1460/ 24= 60.83 days in year.  Nearly 2 months in a year. #life #productivity

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I have used a conservative number for it. Now if you add Netflix, YouTube and other video services in it, we are probably looking at 4-5 months year.

Now if you add 7 hrs per day for sleep. 

7 * 365 = 2555 hrs / year

2555 / 24 = 106.45 days / year

Now if you add all of these, 4-5 months on social media & video services and now if you add nearly 4 months of sleep time (which is must have), we are loosing nearly 8-9 months every year on non-productive activities.

Off course, sleep is required so it is kind of constant but do we really need to spend 4-5 months every year on non-productive activities or apps. Imagine in next 10 years of your life, you will end up wasting 4-5 years on it. And in addition to sleep hours, you are hardly left with any time to do anything productive.

How to improve productivity & get rid of distractions

Now if you are looking to do anything meaningful with your life, you have very limited amount of time. 

Now to improve your productivity and avoid distractions, you should follow a disciplined life style and avoid distractions, that’s the solution. 

I know you must be cursing me for telling you something which you already know. 

It’s easier said than done, we are addicted to these apps and products and we can’t reduce or avoid them so easily.

Reason is, as a human we are conditioned to respond better when we have exact information instead of some high level sermon. 

By exact information, I mean data.

For example, earlier in post I gave you exact numbers of days you loose every year on social media or video apps. 

That is kind of eye opener for us.

In fact, I never looked at my life or daily routine till I looked at these numbers for me. 

For example, research shows that you can improve or develop proficiency in some skill if you were to put 20 hrs in it. But it is just for beginning. If you were to put 10000 hrs in something, you can be ultra competitive at it. I mean really competitive, like international standards.

So if you want to become a rocket scientist or international golf player, you will need to put approximately 10000 hrs but if you want to learn marketing, accounting, programming language or found your startup, maybe few thousand hours will be enough. 

You can read about this at -

But problem is as we are living a monotonous life on auto-pilot, we just don’t realise that we are wasting few thousand hours every year on these un productive activities. 

So in order to get rid of our distractions and improve our productive, we first need to identify where we are wasting our time. 

And not just some high level idea, but in terms of exact number of hours and days.

For this, I propose, you should use some tool. It could be a simple spreadsheet with some formulas where you enter data and it should calculate these numbers or even better, use some product or app to do it. 

I recommend using QuickurSelf. 

QuickurSelf is a LIFE fitness app.

Just as we use health/fitness apps for our physical app, we need a LIFE fitness app to take control of our life. 

QuickurSelf is a very good app designed to improve productivity and give us exact information we need. You add your daily activities and it will generate insights about your daily lives with charts and metrics in easy to understand format. 

You can also indicate the priority and associated emotional status of the activity. Over a period of time, you get to know whether you were happy, sad or neutral with the activities you do  on a daily basis.

To give you some sense, how you can add activities or what kind of information you will get, you can refer to these screenshot. Click on the image to increase the size of the image.

So to sum up, I will recommend you use such tools to develop a understanding of your life’s pattern. Information is key to winning this war.

And yes, you should treat it like a war. It is your life and if you are wasting 4-5 years in every decade of your life, you will have tough time in achieving your dreams or goals. 

Find out where you are spending most of your life and if it is social media app or video streaming service, cut down on those. 

Once you have exact information, in terms of years and days, you will have clear idea how much of your life you can take back if you were to cut down your time on those services. 

This is your starting point.

start using this app or some other tool, build a history. if you have access to data related to your life, you can make huge difference to your life and those around you.

Few interesting articles on improving productivty & avoiding distractions;

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About akhilendra

Hi, I’m Akhilendra and I write about Product management, Business Analysis, Data Science, IT & Web. Join me on Twitter, Facebook & Linkedin

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