Experiment with doing less
With the Easter holidays coming up, you might be among those with a short workweek this week. Or next. Or both.
But even if you don’t have any days off, I’ve got a challenge for you. This week: take part in an experiment.
Many of us have stuff in our lives that distract from what we think is truly important. And maybe you’ve tried to make a change at some point, or maybe you’ve managed to mercilessly scrap things from time to time. After a while, the bad habits can creep back in.
But just think: having less to do. How great would that be, right? So today, I’m not adding something to your already busy week, but quite the opposite: Give yourself room to not do something. And if your workweek happens to be shorter than usual, even better.
I see two main categories:
1. The big distractors
When you get stuck at work, what do you do? I can rattle off my whole list: check Twitter, Slack, email, Telegram, the news, GitHub. I’m sure you have your own set of go-to apps and websites you find yourself using far too much.
And I’ve got my excuses at the ready, because they’re all really really important for staying on top of things.
Whether that’s true or not, I’m going to do things differently this week. As part of this experiment in doing less, I’m going to recommit to keeping my email inbox closed during the day, except for the scheduled blocks.
The challenge here is simple: Eliminate one of the big distractors from your week. (Tip: A browser extension like StayFocusd lets you block certain websites, to make things easier.) It could be a specific site you cut out or some other habit. So, pick your poison and join me this week.
2. Still important, just not this week
The big distractors are clear enough, but this second category can also be incredibly freeing. I’m a big fan of doing a Friday recap, where you look back over your week and make plans for the week ahead. Always involves prioritizing some important things over other important things.
But you can also look at it the other way around: You now know that you won’t be able to work on all your big projects this week. Instead of feeling like you’re running behind all week, you could decide to postpone them for a week (or longer).
The challenge here is also straightforward, but may require a little more thought up front. What 2 or 3 things will you consciously decide to park for a week or so?
For instance, I set myself the goal of reaching out to one new person every day and introducing them to GRIP. But given what’s on my plate at work and the upcoming move, I know I’m not going to get to that, so I’ve scrapped it for this week. Making choices like these gives you some breathing room.
Tell me about it
I’m eager to hear what big distractor you’re doing without, and what important work you’re temporarily postponing, so you can focus this week on what matters most. Want an extra nudge in the right direction? Email me and I’ll help you stick to your plan.
Have a good one,