In a recent post, I talked about ways to handle distractions that come from everyone else. One of our biggest sources of distractions though, comes from within our own heads.

We have a tendency to do it to ourselves. We let distracting thoughts, emotions and shiny new ideas get in the way of focusing on the work at hand.

I see this happen a lot when people don’t have clarity on their goals. It’s pretty easy to get caught up in the heat of the moment when you’re not sure where your priorities are.

You’ve been there before. You start the day by checking your messages and reacting to whatever fires or emergencies they bring. You read a great article and get caught up planning out how you would execute what you read about in your life. Someone else gets a win and you get lost in your thoughts about why you’re not pulling ahead yourself.

When it comes to getting out of your own way and kicking inner distractions to the curb, start by figuring out where you want to put your energies in the first place.

A good place to start is with the Franklin Covey Productivity Pyramid®.

The pyramid teaches that our Governing Values act as a foundation for everything we do and serve as our guide for how we prioritize the things that we allow into our lives. I love the concept because it helps to make sure that goals are grounded in beliefs that are important to us. As you move from the base of the pyramid up, you plan your long term goals, intermediate goals and daily tasks from there.Productivity Pyramid

Unfortunately, I’ve seen too many people get stuck at the very top of the pyramid. They let daily tasks run away with them, and never check back with their goals or values to make sure that their daily actions match what they value.

Getting Funnel Vision

My clients get a kick out of the following the exercise. Imagine the pyramid is turned upside down. Then think of your Governing Values as a funnel and imagine that your activities have to “filter” through your values. Would your daily actions pass the test? Can you match the things you’re spending your time on to a long term goal or governing value?

Pyramid Funnel visionNow this exercise only works if you’ve actually taken the time to figure out your values or what I call Viewpoints. If you need help with that, we’ll tackle that in another blog.

For now, just be sure to ask yourself if the things you are going to spend your time on can be tied back to your core values.

Don’t let things get on your calendar if they don’t help you reach your goals, are tied to your passion or support your vision.

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Nicole Chamblin
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Nicole Chamblin

I’m Nicole Chamblin, a productivity “coachsultant”, the Chief Visionary and owner of Visions Productivity Solutions. Through onsite consulting, virtual coaching and live training sessions, I love teaching ways to more effectively manage the 3 Ts™- time, team, and tasks. If you’re a small business owner or a department head of an established business that has never taken the time to put in place back end administrative processes to improve productivity, efficiency, communication and collaboration– I can help.
Nicole Chamblin
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