‘I thought that clock-watchers were those people who don’t have enough to do and were just longing for the day to end so they could go home,’ declared Julie as she was settling in to a recent coaching session, ‘but since I’ve got this new job, I seem to have become obsessed with time. I’m forever checking the clock, working out how much time I’ve got between meetings or how long I’ve got to write my report.’
‘What happens then?’ I asked.
‘It’s a downhill spiral. I decide I’ve got too little time, so I stress out about that, I start to try to work out a better way of doing things, then I beat myself up mentally for not having enough time, then I realise I’ve just wasted 15 minutes worrying about how little time I have and how pointless it is to start now as I’ve got a meeting in 20 minutes…’ Julie stopped to draw breath, ‘See what I mean? I am driving myself to distraction.’
I shared with Julie a Sam Levenson quote I’d seen recently: ‘Don’t watch the clock. Do what it does: keep going.’
‘Yes – that’s what I need to do: stop being distracted by how little time I have and make the most of the time I do have,’ she laughed. We spent the rest of her session working out how she could stay focussed and make the most of her time.
Perhaps clock-watching isn’t an issue for you. Maybe your distraction is the noise of the children playing whilst you working on your distance learning course. Do your social media accounts entice you away from your spreadsheets? Most of us have something which distracts us and we can’t deal with it until we recognise it.
Today’s pebble for you to examine: what’s your biggest distraction and what can you do to tackle it?
What do you think?
Turning over pebbles is the blog of Thinking Space Coaching.
If you’d like to make progress in your work and life, why not email me to see how we could work together?