Can Someone Please Tell Me How To Do This?

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I've recently found myself becoming distracted by non-work related things online (again). Things like checking email, WF, Facebook and just about every other site on the planet all have their time and place, but some days I waste way too much time there.

I visit these places with the thought of only doing so for a few minutes to give myself a break, but next thing I know I've wasted a lot of time. I used to be much more disciplined, but not as much lately.

I need to restrict myself during certain hours or at least until I get a certain amount of work completed.

I'm sure I've seen posts about this but I'm not finding anything.

Anyone?
  • Profile picture of the author seonutshell
    You are procrastinating. Massive problem but there doesnt seem to be a WSO for it....

    I set alarms on my phone when i give myself a break, and tell myself that no matter what, when that alarm rings im going to get back to work.

    I give myself 15 minutes every hour as thats a good work play ratio for me.

    The trick is to set your alarm for every hour that you plan on working, and set the snooze time for 15 minutes. Then when the alarm goes off, press snooze and take your break. AFter the 15 minute snooze period, your alarm will buzz again so you "Dismiss" the alarm, go back to work and wait for the next alarm to go off.

    try it its easy to set up and works like a charm.
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  • Profile picture of the author HeySal
    I find it easiest not to get distracted when I have a deadline. I you know when you have to have something done it's a lot easier to pull yourself back to work.
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    • Profile picture of the author lanfear63
      Reality check though. How many hours do you need to work a day to maintain your current/desired income?. Are you maintaining it? As long as you do them its ok and the net does not just open 8-5. If this is affecting your income though then perhaps you will have to tighten up a little.

      Reading an interview with Tony Marriot from a few years back, Oh I live in Greece and work on a laptop, work online but do 10 hours a day, 6 days a week. NOT living the dream in my opinion.

      If the distractions are your hobby/pastime then you are just slotting them in at uncoventional times.
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  • Profile picture of the author Sumit Menon
    Sometime back I used to use this program:
    Cold Turkey

    It looked very different from the screenshot back then but should essentially do the same thing.
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    • Profile picture of the author Joe Stewart
      Originally Posted by Sumit Menon View Post

      Sometime back I used to use this program:
      Cold Turkey

      It looked very different from the screenshot back then but should essentially do the same thing.

      This is what I was looking for. Thanks.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
    Determine how much time you want to spend surfing each hour (or other block of time) and set a timer. You still need the self-discipline to stick to it, but having that reminded can help.
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    • Profile picture of the author Joe Stewart
      Originally Posted by Dennis Gaskill View Post

      Determine how much time you want to spend surfing each hour (or other block of time) and set a timer. You still need the self-discipline to stick to it, but having that reminded can help.
      I've tried the kitchen timer in the past, as well as Dennis Becker's "Action Enforcer", but haven't stuck with it the way I should have. I think it would be much more effective in my online business vs my offline. The timer is still on my desk, actually.

      Thanks for the reminder.

      Joe
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  • Profile picture of the author Joe Stewart
    Originally Posted by seonutshell View Post

    You are procrastinating.
    Sometimes yes, but not always. I'm not afraid of hard work in any way. I'm just burned out and, honestly, some days it's hard to get going and easy to get online and waste time.

    This is the 6th and 7th time that I've started new businesses, both online and offline combined, since September, 2000. I've been wiped out by my own mistakes, the war in Iraq, the recession, the Google algorithm (twice, actually) and Google Adwords.

    My point is, I'm not a newbie, but I am starting over. I just get distracted and tired sometimes because I have that little voice in the back of my head that tells me something's going to happen again, is it really worth it, etc.

    The answer to those questions is that something IS going to happen again, but it's going to be positive because this time I know exactly where I made my mistakes in the past. I also know that it IS worth it because I've had fat checks and direct deposits showing up in my account and mail box every month before, so I know that it's real and that it works.

    Some days it's just hard to get back on track and start trudging back up the same STINKING hill that you've already climbed so many times before.

    You're right, I do procrastinate some days, but only because my mindset has been messed with a lot. I now it may seem a bit whiny, but I also know that there are thousands of affiliates and business owners that have given up on their dreams of independence and are working a 9-5 job again, if they're lucky.

    Fortunately, the word "q**t" is not in my vocabulary, so I'll just keep on plugging away.

    I just have to get refocused and I figured it might be easier if I remove the temptations, at least until I find my "groove" again. I hope that makes sense?

    By the way, I AM working every day. I'm just not working up to my potential or my expectations. I know that I can do MUCH better.

    Thanks for the tips.
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    • Profile picture of the author David Beroff
      One easy (and free) tool that I've been using is http://Toggl.com . I keep everything private so I can be completely honest with myself: I click in when I start working, and click out as soon as I stop, even if it's "just" to stand up and stretch or whatever. Sure, this ends up yielding a bunch of tiny segments, but they help me to understand exactly how much time I am honestly working.
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  • Profile picture of the author bizgrower
    How about a self reward system.
    Something like get through your list of the most needed things to do that day, then come here or Facebook or what have you. Or part of your list, then goof off, then part of your list, then goof off...
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    • Profile picture of the author Sumit Menon
      Originally Posted by bizgrower View Post

      How about a self reward system.
      Something like get through your list of the most needed things to do that day, then come here or Facebook or what have you. Or part of your list, then goof off, then part of your list, then goof off...
      I was thinking of making an app similar to this a year ago.. Would it work?
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      • Profile picture of the author bizgrower
        Originally Posted by Sumit Menon View Post

        I was thinking of making an app similar to this a year ago.. Would it work?
        I'm far from an app expert, but you never know until you try.
        I'm having a hard time envisioning it. Maybe explain more so others
        could jump in.
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        • Profile picture of the author David Beroff
          Originally Posted by bizgrower View Post

          Maybe explain more so others could jump in.
          Something along the lines of providing a reward for a certain, concrete amount of work accomplished. I think animal researchers may have a few of these devices left over from their various experiments. Hrmm....

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        • Profile picture of the author Sumit Menon
          Originally Posted by bizgrower View Post

          I'm far from an app expert, but you never know until you try.
          I'm having a hard time envisioning it. Maybe explain more so others
          could jump in.
          There'd be two types of tasks- Things you have to do, Things you like to do.
          When you complete things you like to do you earn self-assigned points which you can redeem for the things you like to do. If you fail to do a task by the deadline, points are subtracted from your purse. You can only do things you like if you have the required points.

          That's pretty much the gist of it.
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          • Profile picture of the author Kay King
            This is the 6th and 7th time that I've started new businesses, both online and offline combined, since September, 2000. I've been wiped out by my own mistakes, the war in Iraq, the recession, the Google algorithm (twice, actually) and Google Adwords.
            Joe -

            You are giving yourself excuses and at the same time you are procrastinating because you aren't sure you can do it again. I recognize it because I've done it, too.

            It won't help to block yourself from sites - you'll just find something offline that needs to be done "first".

            Look at your current business plan - is it something you can get excited about? Have you planned so it's not reliant on Google or another platform that might let you down?

            Start thinking about "starting out" rather than "starting over". As you build your business, look at it critically and be willing to make changes as you go if necessary. Adjust, adapt and keep going forward.

            Instead of setting times for distractions - set time for work. Identify a 4 hr period of time you will spend WORKING each day. Doesn't matter what you do before or after that time - but those hours are nothing but work. No exceptions, no excuses.

            It's better to have two period of 2-3 hrs a day - but one block of time may be all you can handle right now. You can spend 8 hrs sleeping, 8 hrs goofing off and being distracted, 4 hrs with family....and STILL have 4 hrs to work seriously every day. That puts it into perspective a bit.

            If you have a day and realize you don't know what work to do - sit and stare at the monitor or wall and THINK about what needs to be done to move forward.
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            • Profile picture of the author Joe Stewart
              Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

              Joe -

              You are giving yourself excuses and at the same time you are procrastinating because you aren't sure you can do it again. I recognize it because I've done it, too.

              It won't help to block yourself from sites - you'll just find something offline that needs to be done "first".
              You're partially right, probably 80% (or more). I know I can do it again, there's no doubt in my mind. I already have my plan in place and it's proven. My ego is bruised, though. I'll admit that. Unfortunately, past glory doesn't pay the bills.

              As I mentioned before, there are a lot of people that got wiped out by Google, the recession, etc in one way or another and a lot of them gave up and got a (perish the thought!) J.O.B. (Ugh).

              I guess that, more than anything, I'm just tired (and whiny). I really hate whiny! Shut up, Joe! LOL

              Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

              Look at your current business plan - is it something you can get excited about? Have you planned so it's not reliant on Google or another platform that might let you down?
              Yes, I am excited about both, although there are parts of them that I'd really like to outsource but I have no choice but to work them myself. I'd really like to be able to leverage what I've already accomplished offline during the past 1 1/2 years, but capital is an issue, so I have no choice but to wait.

              Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

              Start thinking about "starting out" rather than "starting over". As you build your business, look at it critically and be willing to make changes as you go if necessary. Adjust, adapt and keep going forward.
              Absolutely. I intend to test, track and modify as necessary every step of the way.

              Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

              Instead of setting times for distractions - set time for work. Identify a 4 hr period of time you will spend WORKING each day. Doesn't matter what you do before or after that time - but those hours are nothing but work. No exceptions, no excuses.
              Actually, I just started my new schedule today. I have a 6 hour morning schedule that consists of three 2 hour sets with breakfast and one 10 minute break in between. This is the same schedule I worked for many years and it worked very well.

              I then take an hour for lunch and then do 2-3 hours online.

              Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

              It's better to have two period of 2-3 hrs a day - but one block of time may be all you can handle right now. You can spend 8 hrs sleeping, 8 hrs goofing off and being distracted, 4 hrs with family....and STILL have 4 hrs to work seriously every day. That puts it into perspective a bit.
              That's my plan, to have 4 sets of 2 hours per day, 6 offline, 2 online. I also plan to rehire my VA next month part-time to help me repurpose content, do some research and some writing.

              Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

              If you have a day and realize you don't know what work to do - sit and stare at the monitor or wall and THINK about what needs to be done to move forward.
              That's exactly what I'm trying to avoid. I want to have a precise step-by-step plan in place for the online biz so there's never any question about what I or my VA should be doing. I've wasted a lot of time over the past few months being indecisive.


              Thanks so much, Kay. I really appreciate your input and your honesty. You're so brutal! LOL


              Joe
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  • Profile picture of the author barbling
    Action Enforcer.

    You can see an online version at The Action Machine Online

    For me personally, when I need to get stuff done, I just turn off FB/Skype/eMail and get things done. Blocks of intense action.
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    • Profile picture of the author Joe Stewart
      Originally Posted by barbling View Post

      Action Enforcer.

      You can see an online version at The Action Machine Online

      For me personally, when I need to get stuff done, I just turn off FB/Skype/eMail and get things done. Blocks of intense action.

      It's the "Rich Hermit!" :-)

      Actually, I own Action Enforcer and tried to use it more than once, but it really bogs down my computer. Don't ask me why, I have no idea. I just know that when it's installed and running my computer freezes up like crazy and when I remove it the thing works fine.
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  • Profile picture of the author kenmichaels
    ALL of my real world work that needs to be done on a computer gets done
    on a laptop with NO internet connection.

    First, that keeps private stuff ... truly private.
    Second ... nobody can interrupt me with skype ( my biggest time bandit )
    and there is no WF or FB or anything like that without internet.

    It is simply amazing the amount of work i can get accomplished when
    I just take all the toys away.
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    • Profile picture of the author Joe Stewart
      Originally Posted by kenmichaels View Post

      ALL of my real world work that needs to be done on a computer gets done on a laptop with NO internet connection.

      First, that keeps private stuff ... truly private.
      Second ... nobody can interrupt me with skype ( my biggest time bandit )
      and there is no WF or FB or anything like that without internet.

      It is simply amazing the amount of work i can get accomplished when
      I just take all the toys away.
      I understand. I have to be online so I have access to my primary supplier's website, my biggest competitor's (and supplier) site, my offline business email for support, sales, etc and my regular email in case my wife emails me. Try as I may, that woman won't leave me alone when I'm trying to work. If I don't reply to her emails within a reasonable amount of time, she'll just call. There's no escape! Arghhh! :-)

      I do stay off Skype, though.

      Thanks.
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      • Profile picture of the author David Beroff
        Originally Posted by Joe Stewart View Post

        ...and my regular email in case my wife emails me. Try as I may, that woman won't leave me alone when I'm trying to work. If I don't reply to her emails within a reasonable amount of time, she'll just call. There's no escape! Arghhh!
        Hrm. Perhaps we've just identified a significant issue here.

        Might it help if you confront the matter directly, demonstrating the consequences of her expectations?
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        • Profile picture of the author Joe Stewart
          Originally Posted by David Beroff View Post

          Hrm. Perhaps we've just identified a significant issue here.

          Might it help if you confront the matter directly, demonstrating the consequences of her expectations?
          This has been going on for years. I've tried every way you can imagine to get through to her, but most people with an "employee mindset" simply don't understand.

          Unfortunately, now that she's had so many health problems the past few years (and counting), I feel like I need to have the communication lines open. Still, I will let her know about it if it's not important. It can become very frustrating and is very disruptive.

          That being said, I have to give her one or the other and I'll take email over phone calls any day.

          I read somewhere that it can take from 15-30 minutes to become fully re-engaged in what you were doing when something distracts you. Sucks!

          Still, I can't blame all of my problems on her. This is mostly a "Joe thing".
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        • Profile picture of the author Kay King
          Joe -

          I'm brutal because I've been there. I had excuses - and many were valid - but excuses don't pay the bills.

          A bruised ego isn't fatal. As a person, you are more than the work you do - we all are. Having people tell you how great you are....doesn't pay. People criticizing you doesn't pay, either. That's why neither praise nor criticism should be taken too seriously.

          The "staring at the wall or monitor" eliminates the "don't have anything I can do right now so I might as well....goof off". Doesn't take long to get bored and FIND something that needs to be done.
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          • Profile picture of the author Joe Stewart
            Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

            Joe -

            I'm brutal because I've been there. I had excuses - and many were valid - but excuses don't pay the bills.
            You're absolutely right. I was really only teasing you about being brutal. I appreciate your honesty. Sometimes a good kick in the backside is worth a lot.

            Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

            A bruised ego isn't fatal. As a person, you are more than the work you do - we all are. Having people tell you how great you are....doesn't pay. People criticizing you doesn't pay, either. That's why neither praise nor criticism should be taken too seriously.
            Oh, I know. Although it's nice to have a pat on the back now and then, it really doesn't mean much. Much of what's happened is simply part of life's ongoing lessons. Live and learn.

            Sometimes it takes awhile to gather ourselves and shake off the dust, but those that are determined to reach their goals, that want something more out of life, those people keep on pressing forward.

            In the future I'll simply know better to not get in too much of a comfort zone. In the meantime, I just need to stay focused on my plan(s) and work them consistently 5 days a week (without being distracted). It'll be a lot easier once the momentum builds and some regular sales start coming in again.

            Thanks again.

            Joe
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