Distractions are everywhere and a successful day is based off how well you can minimise them and how much progress you can make towards your goals. I’m always looking for ways to decrease these distractions and recently I discovered a tiny tweak that will send your productivity through the roof!

How many people listen to music while they’re working?

I’d say majority of people. Especially us younger people who like to create. Writers, designers, drawers, and coders, we all love our music and can’t live without it.

It makes us feel comfortable. It blocks out the unwanted distractions. With music, we can get more creative. It inspires us and motivates us. It’s what keeps us going and keeps us pushing.

In the past whenever I was writing, I would put my headphones on and listen to music. My go to was generally ‘Candy Shop’ by 50 Cent. I like it because I like lollies.

I’m kidding.

My go to is actually Michael Buble or Alison Wonderland, depending on my mood.

I thought by doing this I was eliminating all other distractions and focus more on writing the article. Which makes sense, especially when my dogs around. Without the music to distract me I would constantly go and play with him.

The other day I was sitting outside and I got one of the best ideas I’ve ever had in my life.

I don’t know what came over me. It was like a force I couldn’t fight.

I decided to take my headphones off.

I became immersed in the noises around me. The birds singing, the trees swaying in the wind and the Sicadas making that weird constant bug noise that they make.

But something else happened.

Idea’s were coming by the truck load. My writing was better and I was completely mesmerised by my work.

I finally got my Flow back.

Encouraging Flow

To be completely honest with you, flow is something I lost for the past few months and shit, did I miss it!

Flows that thing you get when you completely lose yourself in the task at hand. Where nothing else matters and you lose track of time.

You start work in the morning and all of a sudden you find out you’ve missed lunch. You were so focused you forgot to keep track of time.

It’s the best feeling in the world.

It shows true productivity and true focus.

Creating An Environment That Encourages Flow

These are the things I do to encourage flow and ultimately increase productivity:

  • Positive surroundings — I know. I sound like a mum starting up a home nutrition business but it’s true. Where you do the work, heavily effects flow. You need to be comfortable with where you are. That might be a home office, outside, the beach, your car, wherever you choose you need to feel comfortable. A few things to look for are; good lighting, quiet and neat. Mess is bad and so is dark.
  • Love the work — An obvious point but also an overlooked point. You’re not going to reach flow cleaning the kitchen (unless you enjoy that). You need to love what you’re doing, and I know I harp on about it but it all comes down to working on something you’re passionate about.
  • Switch off your devices — Just turn your phone off. You don’t need it and you won’t miss out on anything but I also want to extend this further. Turn off your internet. You don’t need it to write. You don’t need it to draw and you don’t need it to design.
  • No multitasking — For anyone who’s been following me, you’d know I hate multitasking. Anyone who says they can do it is either stupid or lying. By trying to do it, you can never fully focus and will never get the sensation of flow.

To increase the possibility of reaching a state of flow, you need to have ticked all 4 of these points. Without them, you’ll never experience it.

If you’re like me and you love to listen to music while working, for one day, don’t. Just give it a go and see what happens. You will become more immersed in your work. If you break it down, listening to music and working is multitasking and you’re trying to focus on both at the same time.