Do you remember when you were growing up and your parents would say: “Don’t interrupt when grownups are talking?”
Ever had your parents say “Pay attention to what you are doing?”
Now we ARE the grownups and somehow, we’ve forgotten those very basic rules of engagement.
We cannot pay attention to what we are doing if we are constantly battling interruptions. Better yet, when we interrupt others, we are disrespecting their need for attention. Don’t believe you fit into one of these categories? Think again!
If you have ever:
interrupted another person when they were speaking;
stopped daily tasks to answer digital demands – text messages, alerts, personal emails or social media;
walked into another person’s workspace unannounced or without a scheduled time;
checked work email or messages during family time outside of the office;
surfed the internet during a task, telephonic or video conference call;
answered a text message while driving;
interrupted a social event to take a call or answer a message;
sent, or responded to, an after hour message to a coworker or employees;
lost your train of thought mid-project or mid-sentence of a conversation;
answered a non-critical phone call mid-task,
Then you are living in a world of interruptions and distractions, unable to truly pay attention to what matters most.
You see, I believe distractions decay our ability to think clearly, remain focused and be productive. When we allow for interruptions – or become the interruptions – we are limiting our ability to pay attention to what matters most. As a result, we feel frustrated and stressed from our ‘crazy busy’ lives where we interruptions and distractions are costing us our ability to get anything of any real value accomplished.
I challenge you to pay attention. Become mindful of your daily distractions and interruptions – those you suffer from and those you create. You have the control to change how, when and what you focus on achieving. You have the control to change your demands of other people’s attention as well.
Become an Attention Ambassador in your workplace and demonstrate to others – Attention Pays.