I used to have this idea that I could only work if the house was completely distraction-free. I remember not even being able to focus if I could hear my youngest during nap time while the other two were at school. Instead of working I would spend nap time distracting myself and then get frustrated and angry with myself for not getting work done when I had my chance.
It was really holding me back.
I’ve noticed it with my clients too. They think they we can only work if they have an hour of focused time. Or that if they get interrupted all the things they’ve done to that point are a waste of time. They think they can only work in their office when the kids are napping.
This is really holding them back too.
One client told me she hated when she couldn’t complete a project in one sitting. Even when she had a big project to work on she felt like she needed to complete the whole thing in one go. If she didn’t and had to stop for some reason she felt like she was always starting over and all the work she had put in was a waste of time.
Her children are home with her full-time right now and she wanted to cultivate relationships with them by always being available for them, but this meant she was never able to have that time to work on her projects.
We talked about how her all-or-nothing approach wasn’t working for her. We talked about what she wanted to be doing instead and how she could think about it differently.
She changed up her morning routine and now has two 40-minute work blocks each weekday morning.
This has changed everything for her.
She said she had a 50% success rate in not getting interrupted the first week and I was so proud of her.
I was proud of her for:
- Recognizing that 50% was positive
- Not getting upset with herself for not completing tasks in the amount of time she thought they would take
She recognizes now that she can build on the work she accomplished previously. That she has a lot of to-dos floating around in her head that she wants to get out. That she is continuing to do tasks that she doesn’t want to do anymore. That she’s not doing things she enjoys.
We’re still working on those things, but the progress she saw in the ways she thinks about herself in such a short amount of time was amazing.